The Talent Economy Podcast

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Empowering HR to Transform Organizations

Season 2, Ep. 14

With ever-evolving goals in an always-changing corporate world, it can be difficult for a traditional HR approach to keep up. Employing strategies that revolve around numbers and data has allowed one company to stay at the top of its game, even in the face of an unpredictable work environment. In this episode, we speak with Melissa Werneck, Global Chief People Officer of The Kraft Heinz Company, about how analytics can translate to a successful HR blueprint.

Werneck joined Kraft Heinz in 2013 to implement a new performance methodology and integrated management system. She began her career as a logistics analyst with Ambev, before moving on to stints with Claro and Sadia. Before her time with Kraft Heinz, she served as Performance Senior Vice President and Chief People Officer of America Latina Logistica. She holds a degree in chemical engineering from the Federal University of Minas Gerais in Brazil and an MBA from the Federal University of Rio De Janeiro.

Werneck speaks about how her background in data allows her a more agile take on different performance metrics. She also shares with us the link she’s found between her first love, chemical engineering, and HR, and how it all has to do with turning raw materials into polished final products.

Some Questions Asked:

  • How did chemical engineering eventually bring you to human resources?
  • How does one measure inclusion? And what metrics are you looking at to make sure that people feel included?
  • What are some of the transformations that have started with HR at Kraft Heinz that you’re most proud of?

In This Episode, You Will Learn:

  • How adapting to a professional career in a language other than your mother tongue can teach honesty and humility in the workplace. 
  • The most important thing that rapidly growing organizations need to do if they want to get savvier about tracking HR analytics. 
  • The advantages—and disadvantages—of the hybrid work model that’s so popular right now. 

Links:

More Episodes

10/4/2021

Piloting a Program for Radical Flexibility

Season 2, Ep. 15
The last year and a half has caused massive changes in all of our lives, both personal and professional. What if a company decided not only to embrace those changes, but also to use them as a catalyst for large-scale evolution in the way we work and in the way we think about work? In this episode, we speak with Leena Nair, the first female, the first Asian individual, and the youngest ever Chief Human Resources Officer of Unilever, about what the company is doing to create a radically flexible work model—and the benefits that approach can hold for everyone involved.Nair heads a pioneering agenda for Unilever’s 149,000-strong workforce. Under her direction, the London-based company has achieved a 50/50 gender balance across global leadership and now offers a living wage across its supply chain. Her expertise has driven business growth to €50 billion. Nair began her Unilever career at Hindustan Unilever, where she became the first woman on the management committee in 90 years, heading HR. She was also appointed the first woman on the Unilever South Asia leadership team and was responsible for Unilever’s growth in five markets with a business size of around €6 billion. Nair has continued to redefine how big business can contribute to the environment and society; she has a reputation for putting the people at the heart of the business, driving growth, and taking risks to create a better business and a better society.Nair speaks about the unprecedented flexibility that Unilever is currently piloting with its workforce, how the company encourages its employees to be lifelong learners, and her push to continue valuing all the lessons learned over the last 18 months. She also shares with us the lesson Unilever learned about treating every country’s workforce according to the country’s own culture, and why it’s so important that the company continue to support its employees in every way possible, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.Some Questions Asked:What can you tell us about the program that’s allowing people to get an education while maintaining job security?What more can you tell us about how Unilever is imagining what will happen next?Unilever wants all its employees to have a future-fit skill set by 2025. What is a future-fit skill set? And how are you ensuring that goal is met?In This Episode, You Will Learn:How COVID-19 has forced employers and employees alike to slow down and take stock of the way we work.The ways Unilever strives to support its employees’ well-being—mentally, physically, and emotionally.How other companies can learn from Unilever’s gender balance and what they can do to achieve the same.Links:Leena Nair - at UnileverLeena Nair - LinkedInLeena Nair - in Time magazineLeena Nair - in Harper’s Bazaar magazine
9/6/2021

Creating an Employee Alumni Network

Season 2, Ep. 13
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8/23/2021

Recruiting With AI

Season 2, Ep. 12
As companies work to eliminate bias from their recruiting processes, some are turning to artificial intelligence to help them build a more inclusive workforce. In this episode, we speak with Suzan Morno-Wade, CHRO of Xerox, about how AI—coupled with an emphasis on building human connection—is helping the iconic company hire the best talent.Morno-Wade has been the CHRO of Xerox since 2018. She joined the company in 2016 as Vice President of Global Total Rewards, leading the company’s compensation and benefits strategy. She has more than 20 years of experience in HR leadership for global companies, including Hess, Quantum, Mitsubishi, General Electric, and Quaker Oats. In addition, she serves on the board of directors of A Better Chance, a nonprofit organization whose goal is to increase the number of well-educated young people of color in the United States. In 2019, Black Enterprise named Morno-Wade to the list of Most Powerful Women in Corporate America. She holds a Bachelor of Science in accounting from the University of Illinois.Morno-Wade shares why she believes it’s critical to quantify diversity and inclusion efforts, how the last 18 months have spurred organizations to better anticipate employee needs, and why she feels a responsibility to prepare people for change. She also discusses the decision to have employees return to in-person work and why she believes adaptability and resilience are the two most important skills in today’s business climate.Some Questions Asked:How did you become CHRO of Xerox?How does your work with nonprofits that are dedicated to educating young people of color influence your approach to your role as Xerox’s CHRO?How do you leverage employee resource groups to prompt real, significant change?In This Episode, You Will Learn:The innovative ways Xerox is leveraging cutting-edge technology in its talent acquisition efforts.How other people leaders can effectively use employee resource groups to cultivate honest, open communication that prompts significant change.How AI is helping to solve the issue of bias in recruiting.Links:Suzan Morno-Wade - LinkedIn