Class Year: 2018
Major: Management (Concentration in Human Resources)
Position: HR Business Partner I (People Supervisor)
I started thinking about my Human Resources career when I originally worked at a local savings bank as a teller after high school. Once in college, I was able to get an HR internship at TD Bank working in Employee Relations one summer and then returned to the same company to do an internship in compensation going into my senior year. This gave me a well-rounded set of interpersonal and analytical HR skills. In the fall of my senior year, my friend referred me for the People Trainee Program at Anheuser-Busch where I was hired in July of 2018. Four months into my career at Anheuser-Busch, I was promoted to the HR Business Partner role in our Oregon Distributors.
I became interested in human resources from a young age. I had always been told by friends and family that I worked well with people and that I should consider a career in HR. I also have found that I can utilize my analytical skills and people skills by working in HR, which is a win-win for me. I also had two mentors at Bentley who were a few years ahead of me and a professor who guided me down the HR path.
I find the most rewarding aspect of my position is being able to work with all kinds of different people. In my role as an HR Business Partner, I am able to interact with people at all levels of the business from our drivers and warehouse personnel to sales and marketing directors. I also am able to learn a lot about the business and how all these different functions operate to get our products to the consumer.
I find the most challenging aspect of my position is trying to manage the different needs and requests you get from people. You have to wear a lot of different hats in the HR Business partner role and they can change daily. Sometimes you need to give tough feedback to someone, while the next day you are promoting another person. You also have to manage and prevent turnover while you ensure your organization remains fully staffed by recruiting new hires. Managing all of these different factors can be challenging at times.
The most helpful advice I have for someone preparing for this career is being open and willing to accept new challenges. The beauty of working in HR (in my opinion) is that no day will ever be the same. Our world is growing at a faster rate, which means businesses and their needs are rapidly changing. In order to have a successful career in HR, you need to be able to adapt to show success in the midst of change. This may include mass re-orgs, layoffs, mergers and acquisitions, or a change in company strategy to name a few.
The Bentley specific resources I would recommend to someone pursuing this career are the HR specific courses. The HR concentration courses within the management major are very important to take if you want a foundation of HR skills that will set you apart from other candidates. While all courses were beneficial I think that it is most important to take MG 250 (Intro to HR Management) and MG 351 (Total Rewards). I believe that everyone at Bentley should have to take MG 250 because it gives you an overall understanding of what HR is, what people in HR do, and how this will impact you as an employee in the workplace. You learn the key components of recruitment, employee engagement, and HR strategy to name a few. In MG 351, you get a thorough understanding of compensation, benefits, and other reward systems at companies. This can be very useful for developing your analytical skills while also understanding how your salary is determined and what factors go into your overall rewards package.
The person that was most helpful in getting me where I am today was not just one person, but a handful of amazing people. It’s difficult pick just one person because there were three in particular who helped me get to where I am today. First off, Samuel Lerner (Class of 2017) always served as a mentor to me at Bentley as we were both in the HR concentration. He was the one that gave me the referral which allowed me to land this job at Anheuser-Busch, so I am forever grateful to him for that. He is still one of my best friends that I talk to almost every week. I also owe a huge thank you to Prof. Walker who leads the HR concentration at Bentley because she spent many hours outside the classroom coaching me on how to navigate my career towards HR and how to handle tough situations with employees. Lastly, I have to say thank you to Prof. Abbott for the coaching and development she did with me outside my major. Prof. Abbott was my gender studies professor and taught me to manage a large research project on my own and showed me that it is possible to tie one of my passions into my career. It is for this very reason that I try to execute diversity and inclusion or gender equity strategies at Anheuser-Busch. She is also the reason that I will likely go back to school to become a professor and hopefully open up my own HR consulting business one day.
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