About Sonali Roychowdhury:
Sonali is the Vice-President Human Resources for Asia Pacific, India, Middle-East & Africa Supply Chain, Labour Relations and Singapore Headquarters at Procter & Gamble. She has holistic leadership experience of 23 years across P&G, leading multicultural organisations in Country/Region HR leadership, handling mergers /acquisitions, Business Partnership, Change Management, Talent Development, Equality & Inclusion.
She has lived and worked in India, Vietnam, Singapore, building a legacy of talent internally, as well as the external community via mentoring. Arising out of her first-hand experience as a female leader pursuing an international career, Sonali is committed to driving positive change and inclusion in the organization and community.
Listen to the full discussion here:
Connect with the Guest:
Sonali Roychowdhury: LinkedIn
Some of the highlights from the podcast:
- Driving inclusion in different countries
- How P&G takes care of the mental health of its employees
- Talent attraction, acquisition, and development management
- Essentials skills to move to senior level leadership roles
- Building resilience at large and during a crisis
- Key factors which allowed Sonali to have such a thriving international career
- [1:44] Can you share with us how you drive inclusion in the countries you’re leading?
- [3:08] I think the first is Building Awareness, the second is Leadership Accountability and last but not least, is storytelling, so these are the three areas that we touch upon on our inclusion journey.
- [7:04] Can you share with us how inclusion makes business sense as well?
- [8:15] First of all, I think it is about innovation, the second is the talent imperative and I think the third thing is that lack of inclusion gets in the way of agility. So I think those three have a very real impact on the top and bottom line of any company.
- [10:44] How is P&G taking care of the mental health of its employees?
- [13:55] How has the overall feedback been from your employees who have undergone this mental health? What are some of your findings and your learnings in this journey along the way?
- [14:54] The role of an organization is to provide the space, access, and tools so that anyone feels empowered to make the choice that works for them.
- [16:00] What are your team doing differently when it comes to talent, attraction and acquisition to development management that lead to such high retention?
- [17:05] A few things that we do focus on first is putting development of people at the core. Second is putting the people manager and their kind of direct report at the center of everything and I think the third thing is being a global company taking advantage of the ability to be able to move people around with different experiences, different businesses, and categories.
- [20:10] What skills, whether soft or technical skills, according to you, are essential for professionals to move to senior level leadership roles?
- [20:53] So probably the most enduring skill, I’d say, for leaders or for anyone is curiosity. The second one that I talked about is digital because no matter which part of the business you’re in, the world is changing. The third one, a softer skill is resilience.
- [24:03] What would you say are some of the ways in which people can build on their resilience, which the last one and a half years has taught us?
- [24:14] I think one way is putting yourself in situations which sometimes push you into, not just out of your comfort zone, but sometimes even your panic zone. So putting yourself in situations, which make you uncomfortable doing it frequently, intentionally, even if it’s small, I think that builds resilience.
- [26:09] What advice would you give to people entering the workforce if they want to have an exciting career?
- [26:28] Be curious. Don’t box yourself in because the world is changing so fast that sometimes you discover your passion or your passion discovers you but you have to keep yourself open to it.
- [27:45] What do you think are the key factors which allowed you to have such a thriving international career?
- [28:12] So one is to immerse yourself in different cultures. Don’t start with thinking that you know it, but immerse yourself to understand where the other person and the business are coming from.