Top 40

Power can be remarkably short-lived, as can be seen with our third list of
power players, clocking up 23 new entries. 
The dominant themes which influenced the Personnel Today team’s choices
were the rise of out-sourcing and eHR – with the major players and their
clients continuing to win serious business and make significant savings – and
the challenges of globalisation, which has helped many international HR
managers make names for themselves.

Profiles by: Caroline Horn, Jane Lewis and Sue Weekes

1 Nick Starritt (3)
Group HR director, BP

Despite
a little local difficulty over UK fuel protests last autumn, BP has had a
cracker of a year – announcing the highest set of profits ever made by a UK
company (£10m). A close associate of CEO Sir John Browne, Starritt has been at
the centre of the action managing the aftermath of three
"mega-mergers" within 24 months. This has meant assimilating 100,000
employees across the world into the new BP. Meanwhile, he has also had his
hands full shaping the company’s new-look HR function in the wake of the Exult
deal – as well as heading off teething problems. Nevertheless it has been
described as a meeting of two minds. Starritt remains ebullient about future
prospects, quoting CEO Browne’s dictum that "the best is yet to come".

2 James Madden (2)
CEO and president of Exult

Exult’s
continuing reign as the world’s leading outsourcer of Web-enabled HR process
management means Madden keeps his place at the top of the pile. This year,
Exult built on its initial deal with BP to win a further slew of contracts
worth an estimated $2bn – including a $1.1bn deal with the Bank of America and
a $300m contract with Unisys – and now supports some 350,000 employees
worldwide. The company opened two new processing centres in Glasgow and
Charlotte, North Carolina, and, with a staff count of 1,300, has itself
quadrupled in size over the past year. In June 2000, it conducted a successful
initial public offer and "established and sustained" a market
capitalisation of $1bn.

3 Vaughan Young (16)
Chief operating officer, e-peopleserve

As
chief operating officer at e-HR services provider e-peopleserve, Vaughan Young
is shaping the HR infrastructure of tomorrow and applying technology to totally
transform the function. His and e-peopleserve’s aim is to install e-HR systems
which rid HR of the drudgery and burden of administration and let staff get on
with the real issues, such as the war for talent and securing the right
compensation and benefits packages. That he can bring about major change is
writ large on his resume: while director of HR and development services at BT,
he led the transformation of personnel services, introducing commercial
principles and practices. "Yes, he is visionary," says a colleague,
"but he also has a practical aptitude for the day-to-day." Young is
currently building a global management team to lead e-peopleserve’s
internationalisation, making the company a worldwide force in the e-HR services
market.

4 Will Hutton (38)
Chief executive, The Industrial Society

Will
Hutton has succeeded in rejuvenating the Industrial Society as a true
campaigning organisation, driving issues such as corporate responsibility,
work-life balance and social equity to the fore and influencing public policy
at the highest level. Just over a year into his tenure, the society is also
enjoying financial security. But the former editor of the Observer, who is
described as an "inspirational leader" by colleagues, has plenty left
to do. The society welcomed the Green Paper on flexible working, but it
continues to press the Government to take a stronger lead in tackling the
culture changes employers must make when implementing flexible working
practices and new parenting rights.
The work carried out by its Futures division will help shape working practices
over the next decade. With such a successful first year in office, Hutton’s
influence can only grow.

5 Geoff Armstrong (7)
Director general, CIPD

Armstrong
heads up the CIPD, which represents the HR profession and has had a mixed year.
No sooner had the organisation achieved its six-year goal of gaining chartered
status than a debate emerged on how well it was meeting members’ needs over
issues such as training and development. The CIPD is now in the midst of
changing its professional standards so that they are more focused on business
management – updated standards will be introduced in mid-2002. While these
behind-the-scene changes continue, the CIPD will also be working to raise its
profile as it aims to encourage more HR professionals to become full members.

6 Elizabeth France (-)
Data Protection Commissioner

France gains her place mainly as a consequence of the new Data Protection
Code she has pioneered, which aims to offer guidance to employers on the use of
employee personal data. Unfortunately, the code looks like raising more
questions than it answers. Slammed by the CBI as "unworkable",
opponents claim it will prove to be more than an unnecessary headache to
employers. Too focused on employee rights, they claim it will lead to
"unreasonable obligations". Particularly contentious are the extra
restrictions on employee monitoring and e-mail access. What is certain is that
if she sticks to her guns, France is bent on a collision course with much of
the profession.

7 Rita Donaghy (-)
OBE, Chairwoman, Acas

A former ground-breaking trade unionist in the growing areas of education
and white-collar work, Donaghy’s tenure at Acas may well see the arbitration
body regain the kind of public profile it has not enjoyed since the 1970s. A
natural chairwoman, she claims she was "born" for the job. Over the
past year, Acas has particularly boosted its role in the small business sector
with numbers contacting the body rising by 40 per cent. Its long-awaited
voluntary arbitration service, which should reduce the time and cost of
employment litigation, still needs more cash to deal with increased demand. But
Donaghy’s status as a leading New Labour light – she was formerly on both the
Low Pay and Equal Pay Commissions – gives her the clout to get it.

8 Michael Porter (-)
Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School

The fact that "sustainable competitive advantage" has achieved
cliché status shows the continuing global influence of this management thinker.
His Competitive Advantage: Creating and Sustaining Superior Performance is now
in its 52nd edition and has been translated into 15 languages. Many claim it
has transformed their understanding of what is meant by competitive advantage.
The strength of Porter’s work lies in his ability to dissect organisations and
show where the real value lies. This hands-on approach has found favour with
AT&T, Procter & Gamble, Credit Suisse First Boston, and even a couple
of heads of state. Regular speaking appearances on the CIPD circuit this year
have ensured a growing following within the HR community.

9 Gurbux Singh (37)
Chairman, the Commission for Racial Equality

Gurbux Singh has a deserved reputation for change and modernisation and his
first year at the Commission for Racial Equality has been no different. But
after 12 months of overhauling internal systems and management styles and
attending to the commission’s image, he is now turning his attention to wider
issues. He is not afraid to court controversy either, as shown by the furore
over the compact on race in the run-up to the General Election.
The new Race Relations Amendment Act came into force in April. "The public
sector now has a positive duty to fulfil certain criteria, including putting in
place critical measures to respond to race issues, and performance
measurement," says Singh. "That has huge implications for the human
resource industry." The commission will produce its own codes of practice
and will be responsible for enforcing the legislation.

10 Anna Diamantopoulou (10)
Commissioner Responsible for Employment and Social Affairs, European
Commission

A surprise appointment two years ago, Anna Diamantopoulou has been working
hard to raise her profile with a series of speeches that put human resources at
the heart of European growth and competitiveness. She says, "There is a
growing recognition that effective social and employment policies are vital for
workers and for business."

And she is looking for change, to "revamp and remodel our labour
markets and to modernise what we call the European Social Model." EC
directives over part-time work and fixed-term work, as well the proposal on the
European Information and Consultation Directive for compulsory employee
consultation, are all moves in that direction and could have a significant
impact on the UK labour market.

11 Bryan Sanderson  (-)
Chairman, Learning and Skills Council

Bryan Sanderson is the new head of an ambitious Labour initiative – the
Learning and Skills Council – which aims to improve the skills of Britain’s
workforce. There are currently around 6 million adults in the UK without formal
qualifications.

The LSC was launched in March but already has a high profile and Sanderson will
spend the next year building on that. "Improving staff training should not
be viewed as a cost, but as a real investment," he says. "Our
research shows that even a small increase in training spending can
significantly increase profitability for businesses both large and small."

In the coming months, Sanderson says, the LSC will be talking to
"learners, learning providers and businesses in order to change current
attitudes and create new opportunities".

12 Susan Anderson  (-)
Director of human resources, CBI

Susan Anderson has spent nearly a year as director of human resources at the
CBI and has been extending her influence on both a national and European level.
She has lobbied the Government to reduce the burden of legislation on small
businesses, and represented employers’ views during negotiations on the
National Minimum Wage and Part-Time Work Law. In Europe, she is involved in
negotiations over European directives on part-time work and fixed-term work.
She warns, "If the Government decides to introduce these, it will have a
significant impact on businesses as the UK currently has a more flexible labour
market."
The continuing pressure for new legislation – particularly in an election year
– will keep the CBI busy protecting the interests of employers.

13 David Ulrich (12)
Associate professor of business administration, University of Michigan
Business School

Named by Business Week as the world’s top educator in human resources, David
Ulrich continues to be a massive draw on the conference circuit because of the
clarity of his vision when it come to the future of HR. His comments that HR
professionals will be removed, outsourced and automated if a new agenda is not
defined ring harsh but true, being delivered at a time when many need guidance
as to how they can add greater value to business. As an expert in
organisational change, his vision is based on the HR department becoming a
business partner and a leader of change and innovation. But it’s not just
insight he offers, with attendees to events saying that they come away with
practical tools and techniques to put it all into practice. And they’re not
alone in this, with half the Fortune 200 having used Ulrich as a consultant.

14 Michael Moore  (-)
Director of HR operations Glaxo Smithkline

The year saw Michael Moore finally get his teeth into his greatest career
challenge to date – the long-awaited merger with GlaxoWellcome. He is now
responsible for devising and implementing HR strategy for the world’s largest
pharmaceutical company. Unsurprisingly, after two or three false starts, the
newly-combined company admits it faces a staff motivation problem, and Moore’s
first priority is to tackle this. His likely model will be the
Smithkline/Beecham merger undertaken a decade ago, which majored on the pursuit
of a completely new culture. Consolidating the company’s global reach remains a
preoccupation. But Moore’s policy of developing global awareness by regularly
moving the company’s 150 country managers around the world has paid dividends –
as has his "risky" decision to promote young talent to senior
positions ahead of the usual schedule.

15 Maggi Bell (20)
Business development director, Capita

Capita has spent the past year consolidating its position in the outsourcing
market rather than engaging in debates on outsourcing, so its profile has been
slightly lower. Having said that, the organisation has grown tenfold, and it is
for this reason that Bell makes it into our top 20 again. It now manages
between £120 to £150m outsourced HR services in the public and private sectors.
Capita has recently secured its largest contract to date, for the Blackburn
with Darwen Council. The shift to outsourcing shows no signs of slowing in the
public or private sectors. Capita will introduce an education portal in
September – a result of increased interest in performance in this sector –
while mergers and acquisitions in the private sector, particularly among
utilities, will keep Capita busy here, too. Best Value remains the driver for new
contracts, says Bell, but adds, "Both parties have to work together
effectively for outsourcing to work – it’s not something either party can enter
into loosely."

16 Peter Drucker (25)
Management thinker

Now in his 93rd year, the most respected management thinker of the 20th
century continues to make waves in the 21st. Although some have criticised his
work as over-simplistic and/or too dense for easy consumption, he remains the
master of the one-off phrase, or Druckerism. Moreover, his early pronouncements
on the advent of the knowledge economy – in which the importance of human
capital overtakes that of traditional capital and natural resources – have more
than come to fruition. If nothing else this should continue to bolster his
standing as the patron saint of HR. Over the past year Drucker, ever the
futurist, has switched his attention online, developing online management
courses in conjunction with Corpedia Training Technologies.

17 Helen Wilkinson (-)
Founder and CEO, e-lancentric

A pioneering member of the think-tank Demos, which had a major influence on
the Labour Government Wilkinson’s predictive workplace ideas and opinion
continue to make her an intellectual force to be reckoned with. She has spent
much of the past year setting up her online organisation, e-lancentric, created
to serve the needs of the country’s growing community of e-lancers. She also
aims to use it to build a knowledge bank about the "elancentric"
lifestyle to inform and educate business. In Personnel Today, she recently
wrote about the need for HR directors to prepare for an increasingly mobile and
remote workforce. She sits on the Demos Advisory Council and with her work, The
Dot Bombshell: Women, Technology and the New Economy, too, to be published by
the Industrial Society this summer (for which she is a research associate),
expect her to be stirring up debate over the coming months.

18 John Monks (5)
TUC General Secretary

Another mixed year for John Monks, which sees him slip down the ranks. He
successfully challenged the Government on parental leave – the case is now
before the European Court of Justice – although his bid for a £4.50 minimum
wage failed.

He has made it clear there will be further battles over workplace rights for
staff. The TUC wants to see a number of changes introduced, including full
employment rights from day one, the extension of the Working Time regulations
to excluded sectors, and to ensure all staff are covered by the Employment
Relations Act.
Given that this is an election year, the recent raft of legislation aimed at
satisfying union demands is unlikely to abate – businesses are going to be
faced with a lot more in the coming months.

19 David Guest (28)
Professor of Organisational Psychology and HR Management, King’s College

David Guest’s move from Birkbeck (where he’d spent 10 years) to King’s marks
a move to public sector work and he is currently enjoying being in the thick of
it evaluating Tony Blair’s nurse consultant initiative. He is also working on
the second stage of the CIPD’s Future of Work programme, which looks at the
relationship between HR management and performance – findings are expected to
be released this autumn. Visitors to the CIPD conference at Harrogate this year
can see the fruits of another of his projects, which looks at HRM and
performance from the chief executive’s point of view. With his psychological
contracts work also continuing, expect this quietly prodigious academic to
wield considerable influence over the next 12 months.

20 Vance Kearney  (-)
Vice-president of human resources, Oracle Corporation Europe

Vance Kearney’s own special interest in systems and technology and how they
can relate to people management has ensured that the HR function in Oracle has
played its part in the now famous billion-dollar bottom line saving, espoused
in the press by CEO Larry Ellison when Oracle transformed itself into an
e-business. Kearney joined Oracle in 1991 as director of human resources and
now, as vice-president of HR Europe, he is a global HR executive in every sense
of the word, generally on a plane somewhere at least once a week.

Colleagues say he’s put the relevance back into HR (he also makes it fun,
they say) and with a straightforward and pragmatic approach has linked it
directly with business operations. Oracle’s implementation of an e-HR system is
already fulfilling the dream of a strategic HR department.

21 John Hofmeister (-)
Group HR director, Shell

In the aftermath of another record year for Shell, Hofmeister can
congratulate himself on the group’s successful merging of global strategy and
global organisation in 155 countries.

Change management of all kinds has been a major preoccupation this year and
Hofmeister’s ability to root out and capture talent has had an important part
to play. He claims a significant accomplishment has been the reorganisation of
the slimmed down HR corporate centre, now consisting of eight people –
"all global leaders in their own right". He also made progress
developing Shell’s global HR shared services centre – rolling out a $250m
SAP-based HR system – and successfully argued for a significant investment in
leadership education.

Most recently he has been working to ensure a seamless transition as
chairman Sir Mark Moody-Stuart hands over the reins to Phil Watts in July.

22 Julie Mellor (35)
Chairwoman, EOC

The issue of equal pay has become much more high profile as a result of the
Equal Opportunities Commission’s Valuing Women campaign. The Equal Pay Task
Force’s recommendations were hotly debated, and over the coming year the EOC
will begin implementing the Task Force’s proposals. Mellor says, "The
contribution of HR specialists will be an essential part of that process. I
very much hope that the Government’s women’s employment review will speed up
progress on equal pay and begin to tackle the causes of women’s concentration
in a small number of occupations." The outcome of the Government’s
consultation on work and parents is also expected. "Whatever conclusions
are reached, the question of how to enable parents to balance work and family will
be a priority for all practitioners."

23 Cary Cooper (26)
Professor of organisational psychology and health, Manchester School of
Management and deputy vice-chancellor, University of Manchester Institute of
Science and Technology (Umist)

The publication of two further books on workplace stress and a major report
for the EU’s European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Work
Conditions on Stress Prevention in the Workplace have ensured that the prolific
Professor Cooper remains the media’s favourite human resources academic pundit.
With over 80 books now published and a list of credentials that reads like a
litany, you’d think 60-year-old Cooper would start to take things easy. No
chance: he continues his Quality of Life survey work for the Institute of
Management and is currently involved in a project for HEFCE to evaluate all of
Britain’s business schools.

24 John Welch (21)
CEO, General Electric

Described by the New York Times as "one of the most successful managers
in the US", the now world-famous Welch has a bigger fan club than many
Hollywood superstars. He retains his place in the HR Top 40 by dint of his
continuing personal influence on how people are managed. Where GE leads, others
follow. This year, ominously, Welch’s previous emphasis on employee-friendly
policies has been replaced by a much tougher stance – no doubt indicative of
the prevailing economic situation. He has emerged as a strong supporter of
forced grading and now advocates identifying and removing the lowest performing
10 per cent of GE workforce on an annual basis. This Darwinian approach to
management is the only way to "raise the bar of performance and increase
the quality of leadership", he told shareholders recently.

25 Keith Handley  (-)
Change director for the City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council
and president of Socpo

Newly elected Handley owes his position at 25 for three principle reasons:
he aims to combat the growing recruitment and retention difficulties by
offering staff more personal development; Socpo will lead the way in adopting
the anti-discriminatory measures of the Race Relations (Amendment) Act; and he
has a key role in overseeing the expansion of the society’s membership to all
personnel officers. Declaring that Socpo has established itself as an
"important voice of the profession" on the national stage, he has set
an ambitious target to raise membership from 500 to 5,000. As part of this he
also wants to raise the number of black members, which stands at 5 per cent. How
well he meets these targets will determine whether he appears in this list next
year

26 Clive Newton  (-)
Global head of HR, PricewaterhouseCoopers

Last year, Newton gained plaudits for the fine balance he struck between
global and local considerations following the £8bn merger between Price
Waterhouse and Coopers & Lybrand. This year many of these preoccupations
remain – complicated, perhaps, by PwC’s decision to spin off its consultancy
business from its core accountancy activities. "In the old days, HR folk
did HR. Now we are having to get smart about multi-million-dollar IT systems
and become acute tax specialists," he says. The priority this year is to
fully establish the business as a global entity. With 36,000 employees in 57
countries, "this is a big stretch" – particularly the conundrum of
how you implement worldwide systems that are also legal and cost-effective on a
local basis. This also applies to sorting out the right reward structures for
PwC’s 1,500 partners across the globe.

27 David Bell  (-)
Director of people Pearson

David Bell is testament to the wisdom of Pearson CEO Marjorie Scardino’s
decision to put a "creative" in charge of the group’s main asset –
its content providers. A former FT journalist, Bell combines his role as
director of people across the group (which includes Penguin Books as well as
several TV production organisations) with his position as FT chairman. He
claims his key challenge is to develop a culture that entices creative people
to pursue their careers with the company – to make Pearson the best company to
work for in its sector and encourage diversity. As part of this process, he has
pioneered a share option scheme giving every employee a minimum of 15 shares
each. "Making people part-owners of the business has made a huge difference,"
he says.

28 Stuart Crainer (-)
Management writer and co-founder, Suntop Media

Business books have never been more accessible than since Stuart Crainer
started writing them and his work’s direct relevance to many of the issues
facing the modern HR manager mean his influence is now felt far and wide in the
profession. But there’s more to Crainer than books – well, printed ones anyway.
His company Suntop Media, founded with partner Des Dearlove, is providing some
of the best and most incisive business content on the Web. In January it
launched The Thinkers 50, which claims to be the world’s first ranking of
management gurus (see www.thinkers50.com) and they are currently working on a
joint venture with Capstone called ExecExpress, which will feature a series of
e-books and various web-based business content. Crainer is also contributing
editor of Ftdynamo.com and writes for the American Management Association’s web
site, Mworld. His next book, Firestarters, co-written with Dearlove, will
launch in July.

29 Susan Bowick  (-)
Vice-president of HR, Hewlett-Packard

HP has long enjoyed a reputation at the vanguard of HR practice – and the
strength of its corporate culture is such that HPers are said to be able to sniff
one another out in the most crowded room. Much of the credit for this must go
to Bowick, who reports directly to the CEO on fundamental strategies relating
to acquisition, divestments and employee expectations. Despite the strength of
the overall culture, she believes in the importance of maintaining a strong
degree of localism. "We seed start-ups with domestic HP management to
embed the HP way of doing things." But the recent downturn in US IT spend
has hit it hard, forcing lay-offs, and this year she may have to refocus her
considerable talent on further retrenchment.

30 Stephen Byers (1)
Secretary of State for Trade & Industry

Against our prediction last year, Stephen Byers has remained at his post in
the DTI, where he has spent the year furthering the Government’s decidedly
interventionist approach to employer/ employee relations. Once again, a chief
criticism levelled at Byers is his apparent reluctance to consult with those on
the frontline before taking action. Most recently he angered the profession by
embarking on a review of the laws on employee consultation on redundancies –
without consulting employer groups. Opponents claim that other Byers
initiatives this year, including the Work & Parents Green Paper and new
measures on directors’ pay, are similarly roughshod in their approach. Although
still considered a rising star in New Labour, Byers slips down the Top 40. This
year, surely, Tony Blair will consider that the time is ripe for a move.

31 David Murphy (-)
Vice-president of HR Ford Motor Company

Responsible for more than 370,000 employees in over 200 locations, Murphy
has been with Ford Motors all his working life. Having spent the boom years of
the 1990s tackling the manufacturer’s shift into more global procedures, he has
arguably got his work cut out this year dealing with the wider ramifications of
economic downturn. Supporters claim he is the right man for the job because of
his ability to counter difficulties by pushing through ambitious and innovative
HR policies. His response to the company’s problems with racial issues a couple
of years back was to link compensation directly to diversity progress "in
the same way as you would link performance to quality".

32 Ruth Spellman (14)
Chief executive, Investors in people

Ruth Spellman has continued to develop the profile of IIP in the UK and
abroad – and now hopes to establish it as the minimum standard across Europe.
By the autumn, around a third of the UK workforce will be working within an
IIP-badged organisation, including nearly 10,000 SMEs. Internationally, the
organisation has licensed agreements with the Netherlands and Austria, and
pilots are under way in France, Denmark and South Africa. As the organisation
approaches its 10th anniversary, Spellman aims to widen its brief by training
IIP assessors to provide business advice, and by developing new modules for IIP
clients based on best practice – starting with a recruitment module in June.
"We want to help businesses to manage their people and get all the
advantages that come from that," she says. But lack of evidence about
contribution to the bottom line sees her slip down the list.

33 Francesca Okosi (-)
Head of HR, London Borough of Brent

Francesca Okosi has already made it in to Personnel Today’s 21 to Watch
feature earlier this year and we make no excuses for her inclusion here.
Described as one of the most able exponents of HR in the public sector, Socpo’s
vice-president will gravitate to president next year – the first black woman to
hold the post. Previously head of HR at Merton and Havering, Okosi joined Brent
two years ago. Her main remit is to equip staff with skills to cope with the
massive change agenda inherent in public service modernisation. The aim for
Socpo is to continue to raise the profile of HR in local, central and European
government. "We want our foot in the door," she says. Her drive,
strong debating skills, and ability to hold her own in any circle make this a
likelihood.

34 Kathleen Barclay  (-)
Global vice-president of HR, General Motors

One of the largest and most globally diverse companies in the US, with
357,000 employees on 223 sites across the globe, GM has become a byword in
employee education. Katy Barclay has continued to build on this tradition. Over
the past year she has pioneered an alliance with Unext’s Cardean University to
offer MBA courses to 88,000 employees, as well as boosting the motor giant’s
e-learning capability. eHR has been a major preoccupation this year: Barclay
worked with Workscape to develop a global portal to give employees 24/7 access
to corporate information. She also introduced tools to assist GM’s
transformation to a performance-driven organisation. Her talent was recently
rewarded by her appointment as a fellow in the select US National Academy of
HR.

35 Linda Holbeche  (-)
Director of research Roffey Park

Holbeche’s research encourages HR practitioners to develop a strategic
approach to their work. This year she will add three more projects to her
existing portfolio with the publication of titles on mergers and acquisitions,
change management, and on developing a high performance organisation. The
institute also continues to publish Management Agenda.
But it is Holbeche’s support for a new strategic networking group for
experienced HR professionals that could grab the headlines over the next 12
months. "This will be a group of people with opinions and practice, from
different sectors, who will be able to share their experience about real issues
that occur when trying to introduce change into an organisation," she
explains. "I hope it will be an influential group that can act as a
dipstick on opinions and policies."

36 Federico Castellanos (-)
Vice-president of human resources, IBM

Federico Castellanos is living proof that a global vision for HR can come
true, as long as you communicate your message consistently to HR communities
around the world. Just over four years ago, Castellanos stated that he wanted
to change the image of the HR function at IBM because it wasn’t properly
supporting the business. The business had also become international while the
HR function was country-based. Today, IBM has one of the best working models of
global eHR and the EMEA HR service centre in Portsmouth is widely regarded as a
worldwide benchmark, serving 17 countries and 95,000 staff. It’s also managed to
achieve a 57 per cent reduction in HR operating costs.

37 André Van Heemstra (-)
Global head of HR, Unilever

Appointed last year, Van Heemstra is typical of the new breed of global HR
leader with a strong background in general management. Trained as a lawyer, he
worked at Unilever first in marketing and then in general management. Prior to
taking the group’s senior HR role, he was business group president for the East
Asia and Pacific Group. He claims his main remit at Unilever is
"transformational" – the essence of people management is to keep pace
with external change. Thus, formulating new strategies to get the work-life
balance right and to maintain staff loyalty have been as important this year as
driving through Unilever’s acquisition of Best Foods.

38 Hallstein Mork  (-)
Senior vice-president HR, Nokia

Very much a disciple of the Ulrich school of thought, Hallstein Mork has put
in place a strategic HR department that is entirely in sync with the company’s
business aims. He believes HR professionals should be change-agents and
business partners and has created a culture of openness in the workforce that
has seen Nokia become one of the most desirable high-tech companies to work
for. Like its products, the culture is leading edge (the company’s HR intranet
is called the Jazz Café) and it is increasingly moving towards self-service HR
tools to further empower employees and managers. When on the acquisition trail,
Nokia is as interested in the people employed at the targeted company as it is
in their products and technology. Many of its acquisitions have taken place
outside Finland, and there are over 2,400 expatriates on the Nokia payroll.

39 Paul Mckinley (-)
Head of resource and development, Asda

Paul McKinley heads up an HR team that has acquired a nationwide reputation
for staffing initiatives and its Stores of Learning concept earned it the Award
for Excellence in Training and the overall winner’s place in the Personnel
Today Awards last year. It continues to innovate, and in the last 12 months
McKinley’s team has introduced Belief Days, which enable staff to take two
unpaid leave days to celebrate a religious event not recognised on the calendar
and First Day Half Days, allowing parents to take an unpaid half day to take
their child to school on his or her first day. Additionally, there is
grandparents’ leave, which followed research that they are a parent’s first
choice when it comes to looking after children. This enables them to take a
long spell of unpaid leave to care for grandchildren.

40 Heinz Fischer  (-)
Vice-president of personnel, Deutsche Bank

Fischer has been a central player in Deutsche Bank’s policy of growth by
acquisition in the US and Europe – and is a member of the bank’s all-important
Bereichvorstand. Last year, Deutsche Bank’s acquisition of the US giant
Banker’s Trust saw it achieve the standing of the world’s biggest bank. In
recent months, it has been a major player in the consolidation of the internal
German financial services market. Fischer believes firms in the sector face a
particularly vicious fight for global talent, reinforcing the need to create a
strong and distinctive corporate culture. "Apart from ability, the most
important criterion for a rapidly expanding company is shared values. This can
be a big issue in acquisition, particularly one set in another cultural
context."

Comments are closed.