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CAVE Up, Not Out & Down

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HR as a Business Partner

  • Format: Self-paced
  • Course Duration: 1 hr 5 mins
  • SHRM Professional Development Credits: 1.0
  • HRCI Business Recertification Credits: 1.0
  • Certificate of Completion (after passing quiz)

You’ve likely heard that YOU, the HR professional, are a strategic business partner. But what does that really mean? When your fellow team members mention the strategic direction of the company, where do you fit in?

Human Resources brings a great deal of value to an organization. The profession has changed significantly over the past 20 years. Today’s HR Pro is expected to not only wear multiple hats associated to an employee’s life cycle, but also act as a business leader, one who can guide an organization through and around a continually changing economic landscape.

The primary goal of this course is to help you understand what business strategy is and how you, the HR pro, can act as a mighty force multiplier in its implementation. After setting the foundation with key terms, the focus will turn to the importance of communication and explain what expertise you provide in People Development, Organization Structure and Change Management.

Take this course to better understand your value and role as a strategic business partner. As a result, you will lead your team and workforce to the successful implementation of its business plan and achievement of its key performance objectives.

HR Jetpack is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP. This program is valid for 1.0 PDCs for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP. For more information about certification or recertification, please visit

This activity, has been approved for 1.0 HR (Business) recertification credit hours toward aPHR™, PHR®, PHRca®, SPHR®, GPHR®, PHRi™ and SPHRi™ recertification through HR Certification Institute® (HRCI®). For more information about certification or recertification, please visit the HR Certification Institute website at
The use of the HRCI seal confirms that this activity has met HR Certification Institute's® (HRCI®) criteria for recertification credit pre-approval.

Title: CAVE Up, Not Out & Down
Module: Change Management
Duration: 1:57

CAVE people are not necessarily a negative group. Sometimes, CAVE people are more senior employees who have experience with peripheral norms within the organization. Because of this, they have real-world tactical knowledge of how change initiatives may be received and best implemented.

It is the best use of “CAVE energy” to find opportunities for them to provide feedback “up” and not “out” (or worse, “down”). Communication and feedback channels must be made available for the CAVE people in your organization.

It is unprofessional for managers to communicate opinions about change initiatives to their direct reports and other individual contributors. Complaining “up” is the only professional way to provide feedback on change initiatives. Negativity can become toxic when complaints go “out” and “down”.

This starts with you, the HR leader. During any change initiative, using words like “they,” “them,” or “the Home Office,” all communicate that you, the leader, are not embracing the initiative. If you don’t support it, why should your people, particularly the CAVE people?

During all change initiatives, it is imperative that you find opportunities for communication and feedback channels for all employees, especially CAVE people, for they are never silent. If you don’t give them an opportunity to provide feedback “up,” they will CAVE “out” and “down.”

You cannot avoid negative feedback or comments during a change initiative; it’s not a matter of if you will get them. But by proactively managing reactions to change initiatives, you can ensure a more smooth and successful implementation.

An effective change management strategy will be imperative as you implement your strategic plan. As an HR professional, you are uniquely qualified with your interpersonal relationship skills to do just that.

Instructor: Scott Pitts

Scott has spent nearly two decades in the human resources, learning and organization development professions. Scott has led multiple organizations and has taught hundreds of students on effectively creating and implementing business strategy, managing change, and designing effective learning solutions.

Scott is also an Associate Adjunct Professor of Training & Development, as well...

Scott's Full Bio

SHRM Recertification

HR Jetpack® is an official SHRM Education Partner recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP.

HRCI Recertification

HR Jetpack® is recognized by HRCI as an approved provider to offer credit hours towards aPHR™, PHR®, PHRca®, SPHR®, GPHR®, PHRi™ and SPHRi™ recertification.

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