Is HR Running The Company Now?

Dr Stuart Woolley
Published in
6 min readApr 30, 2022


Management faltered during the pandemic, now HR is trying to run the show.

Photo by Gustavo Fring from Pexels

We’ve all been under the thumb of relentless and ridiculous management doctrine from time to time whether it’s unreasonable work practices, unfeasible deadlines, or just being subjected to consistent waves of non-technical drivel and then being asked to ‘just implement it’ for the customer.

Over time we’ve come to adapt, too.

Mostly likely you’ve become an expert deflector of a micromanagement enabled project manager through deliberately tying them up with irrelevant and meaningless details (a.k.a. dead ends) so you can actually get some work done while they’re busy elsewhere.

Perhaps you’ve also realised that the product owner can’t even spell the word requirements let alone know what they are, or how they fit into any reasonable and sane software development methodology.

Most definitely you’ve learned to get your work done via leading the non-technicals by the hand to the land of milk and honey of elegant and effective solutions without falling into the quagmire of process overload — such as with the evangelist sirens that insist everything should somehow be ‘agile’ through and through.

Recently, however, something very strange has happened.

A Waning Management

Now that we’re all working more productively and efficiently from home, management effectiveness has waned so much it’s almost disappeared (i.e. they’re not half an intimidating on a screen, especially when you can mute / minimise / attach a comedy moustache or random ‘technical difficulties’ can all too easily cause calls to drop).

Are management still a force in the workplace any more?

Yes, I know it’s quite an assumption listing them as a force per se, but previously they were the ones who attempted to call the shots and most got on your nerves during an average working day by pacing around and thinking they own the place and absolutely nothing would get done without them.

Today, however, with the desperate attempt by business at large to get people back into the office, for some reason, the illusion of power over the workforce has shifted by large degree from management…



Dr Stuart Woolley

Worries about the future. Way too involved with software. Likes coffee, maths, and . Would prefer to be in academia. SpaceX, Twitter, and Overwatch fan.