Proceedings of European Business Research Conference

Proceedings of European Business Research Conference
Sheraton Roma, Rome, Italy, 5 - 6 September 2013, ISBN: 978-1-922069-29-0
Managing and Designing (integrated) Human Resource
Development Projects: Subjective Concepts of HR
Development Professionals
Sina Fackeler
Corporate Human Resource Development (HRD) has
broadened its scope from a training provider to a business
partner, change agent or specialized expert. However, a global
study of Lawler III and Boudreau (2012) emphasizes that “the
kind of game-changing change” (p. 163) in Human Resources
has not happened yet. Although researchers (e.g. Poell 2012,
p. 2 f.; Garavan, 2007, p. 16 ff.) point out that HRD should
develop from a “tool-of-management” to a facilitator of all
learning and development activities, the progress of
implementing a coherent, vertically and horizontally integrated
system of learning and development differs across companies
and often requires improvement.
Therefore, HRD professionals should shape organizations
actively by pressing ahead with projects that emphasize a
holistic approach of HRD. To act holistically, HRD professionals
have to pro-actively integrate the strategic and normative
dimensions of the company as well as take over leadership for
all activities of learning and development in the company.
In order to advance the professionalization of HRD
professionals by developing a didactic design on the basis of a
thorough understanding of their preconditions and preknowledge, the research project firstly aims to describe and
understand the subjective concepts that guide the actions of
HRD professionals. On the basis of a case study approach the
empirical analysis focusses on the reconstruction of these
subjective concepts in around 15 problem-centred interviews
with HRD professionals by using a specific cognitive mapping
technique (flow chart technique) from June until August 2013.
This results in a classification of action patterns across cases
and the construction of an intersubjective theory that displays
the (implicit) pre-knowledge of the target group and develops
HRD theory further. By a comparison of the status quo in theory
and practice, recommendations for professionals and a target
group specific competence development can be given.
Sina Fäckeler, PhD Student at the University of St.Gallen, Flaschnerweg 4, 9008 St.Gallen,
Switzerland, Mail:, Tel.: 0041-767892434