PAHRA puts the 'resource' in human resources
Q & A with Michelle Malott, president of the Prescott Area Human Resources Association. For information, call 777-9401 or visit www.prescotthra.org.
Q: How did you get into human resources?
A: "It all started my second year of college after my first accounting class and I realized that I did not want to be an accountant. After looking at several different occupations, I decided that I would go with my top two favorites, psychology and teaching, and put them together and go into human resources.
"My first human resources job was with Safeway in 1994 as an intern and then I was offered a permanent position with them after the internship was completed."
Q: How big is PAHRA?
"PAHRA currently has 65 members representing human resources practitioners from major businesses and small organizations across Yavapai County. Members are professionals from diverse industries including government, higher education, healthcare, service distribution and manufacturing. It is anticipated that membership will continue to grow along with the ever-changing quad-city community."
Q: Why is PAHRA important?
A: "PAHRA enhances one's knowledge of human resources with bimonthly chapter meetings and special programs/seminars. It gives one the opportunity to network with fellow human resources professionals and learn of job opportunities in the community. Furthermore, someone can develop leadership skills by serving on the association's board."
Q: How has human resources changed over the past few years?
A: "In human resources, laws are continually changing and, if you don't keep up with these changes, your organization could wind up in legal trouble. Over the past couple of years, these laws have been changing at a rapid pace and the use of attorneys and consultants has become even more important as a key source of quick, accurate information.
"PAHRA is also a great source to tap into the expertise and referrals for these kinds of questions and any other that a human resources professional may have."
Q: What's something unique about PAHRA?
A: "PAHRA is unique in that we are the only group in Yavapai County that represents human resource practitioners. PAHRA became the sixth chapter of the Society for Human Resources Management in Arizona. This affiliation brings a more global perspective to human resource issues and provides members with additional resources. Our slogan is serving the professional and advancing the profession."
Q: What's something unique about you?
A: "For the past 15 years, I have worked doing video for the Arizona State Fair concerts with my husband. I have seen and met many famous people over the years and even had the opportunity to dance on stage with Tim McGraw."
Q: How are you handling the economy?
A: "PAHRA has taken the economy into consideration with low membership dues and even has a pay-as-you-go program that members can use. In addition, we have low-cost seminars that members receive at an additional discount."
Q: How many hours a week do you work?
A: "I work for the Yavapai-Prescott Indian Tribe as the human resources director and work between 40 to 45 hours per week. As president of the board of directors for PAHRA, I work 3 to 4 hours per week. As a mom of a teenage daughter in high school and sports, (I work) endless hours per week."
Q: If you could take a week away, what would you do?
A: "I would fly away to Maine with my husband and daughter, rent a convertible and a place on the beach and just drive around looking at the beautiful sites. Each night we would sit on the beach and gaze at the sunset and just relax."