The HR Game Changer Blog

Rock Star CEO #1: Vaughan Rowsell

It’s not his unique moustache, it’s not his cheeky grin – there are 3 key reasons why I have picked Vaughan Rowsell as the first of our Rock Star CEO’s to write about.

But what is this rock star CEO thing all about?

It all started at the HRGC last year and it’s about CEO’s who not only really ‘get’ that people are the most important part of every company, but they demonstrate that belief too.

This year we wanted to have a panel discussion and hear from the awesome CEO’s who have been changing the game – about what they see needs to happen in the future with leadership and HR.

So for Vaughan Rowsell, here’s why I think he’s a rock star (even though I’ve never actually met him!):

  • He’s built a company that’s world famous in NZ (and soon the world) for being an awesome place to work. But don’t take our word for it. You can see what Vend employees say by checking out Twitter. At Vend you can say what you like about what’s happening and having employees share how awesome things are – attracts others who think that’s where they want to be. That’s a game changer of a social media policy!
  • On that note, the second rock star CEO behaviour is that Vaughan is not only on social media, but he sees what people are saying about Vend, and he responds. When another Vaughan (Rivett this time) wrote an article about Vend using the ‘f’ word in an employment advert – the second Vaughan was invited into Vend to see what it was all about! To read the full story of this click here.
  • Lastly, when I asked Vaughan to speak at the HRGC, he had the best response ever. He sent me through his speaker’s policy. No, this wasn’t a list of strange requirements (like making sure he has a bowl of only green M&M’s pre-show) but something rather awesome instead. Here’s what his policy says:

I get asked to speak at a lot of things, and love to do so. I generally talk about retail technology, culture, start-up topics and doing impossible things. I have a very full schedule and am usually over committed so no promises. If you would like me to come speak at a gig then drop me a line.

BUT before you do!

Question: Is your lineup already full of stale pale males* like me? If so then please use my spot for an inspirational lady. There are more interesting women than dudes about, so I’ll only come along if you have some of them speaking too. A 50/50 ratio would be cool. No offence intended if I say no to hanging with a bunch of dudes!

And that to me is pretty awesome!

The good news is that we do have a panel that’s 50/50 male and female, so if you want to hear Vaughan share how he thinks CEO’s and HR need to lead the workplaces of the future, you know where you need to be on 11 – 12 June! Register now for the HRGC Auckland.

And for those that have worked with Vaughan – is there any other rock star behaviour that we need to add to this list?

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This entry was posted on April 30, 2015 by in Uncategorized and tagged , .

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