Veronique Bohle is the new HR director for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) at Sterling Commerce, a business integration solutions provider. Her core responsibility will be to drive the company’s HR strategy across the region.
Where were you working before and what were your duties?
Immediately prior to joining Sterling Commerce, I worked in a similar role for another IT systems integration company, BEA. My main duties were consultation on recruitment, and devising and implementing the corporate strategy for HR.
What will be the duties in your new role?
I will work closely with the staff and the board to achieve the company’s business objectives and further its presence in the EMEA region. My core responsibility is to devise and drive the HR strategy – a challenge I’m greatly looking forward to as it involves working with many different cultures and working practices in a constantly evolving environment.
What do you hope to achieve in your new role?
I will be working on a local level and individual basis with staff to develop and apply their own creativity, innovation and skills to support the company’s global ethics and values.
Which aspects are you most looking forward to?
Sterling Commerce employs very open, friendly and collaborative work processes where ideas, achievements and also best practice are shared and enjoyed on an international basis – I’m looking forward to working in this type of environment.
How will HR change over the next five years?
New and emerging technologies will greatly affect the way organisations communicate and deal with their customers and their staff – this presents a broad range of opportunities, and some possible threats, for HR professionals.
Who is your ultimate guru?
My bible is a book by Gerard Collignon on how to communicate, Comment leur dire… La Process Communication.
What is the best thing about HR?
Working with people at all levels of an organisation and from a multitude of backgrounds and cultures.
And the worst?
When expectations are too high (or too low), on either side of the employee-employer relationship. Ultimately, not only people, but also businesses suffer.
How do you fill your spare time?
I love to visit new cities. On my list is London, Prague, Rome, Madrid and Vienna.
What is the greatest risk you have ever taken?
I am always taking risks, but calculated risks with the strong conviction that it is for the good of the company.
What advice would you give to people starting out in HR?
Learn to understand people well and the needs of your business even better. Don’t be afraid of change. Always be willing to learn, follow your instincts and think laterally.
What is the worst office party you’ve ever attended?
One where people didn’t speak to each other.
Who would you most like to be stuck in a lift with?
With my boss – the senior vice-president of Sterling Commerce – because we always have so many things to talk about.
2004 – EMEA HR director, Sterling Commerce
2000 – Southern Europe HR manager, BEA Systems
1992 – HR director, Kontron Instruments
1983 – International HR assistant, Europcar International