Even Bolstad, Managing Director HR Norge and President Elect, EAPM

In early September, I had the huge privilege of being elected EAPM president. My tenure starts January 1st 2021.

Human resources, people management, personnel or organization – it doesn’t matter which title you have. What brings us together, is our common task, joy and commitment of building people and developing organizations. And to produce value even beyond that.

I entered the field of HR more than 20 years ago. For me the people side has always had a higher kind of value than most other fields. My initial fascination for the field, as an economist, had much to do with change and organization as tools for value creation. As formulated in an old slogan: “People mean business”. Later I become fascinated by the cross-functionality and complexity within the field, where dilemmas and paradoxes might be found in almost every strategy document and leadership challenge. In recent years I have become more and more engaged in the pure idea of doing good. HR could and should not only be an engine for profit, it should also provide workplaces where individuals can get job security and financial outcome, where they can thrive and develop. In sum, productive, profitable and good workplaces are building blocks in the kind of prosperous, inclusive societies we all want to build and be a part of. This puts HR in center of something which is far bigger than HR itself.

The EAPM has a huge potential in all these dimensions. And when I say EAPM, I primarily mean the joint capacity of individuals who are a part of national HR associations. EAPM is the arena which can link individuals to individuals, organizations to organizations and nations to nations.  All supported by a well-functioning secretariat. We must pull together in order to pull with force.

The last months have been especially challenging. Covid-19 is affecting all of us. As individuals, family members and colleagues. The virus came on top of already tough times with increasing distrust and where leaders with easy answers to complex questions gained power and popularity. Values and trust are under pressure.