Analysis: Are chief people and HR officers retail’s CEOs in waiting?

Board meeting

Recently appointed CEOs for retailers ranging from Chanel to Greggs have come from a people-focused background. Could the HR department be the proving ground for more future leaders as retailers assess their culture and strategy post-pandemic?

Retail has ridden out a period of relentless and radical change during the coronavirus crisis. The rapid shift to online shopping, fluctuating peaks and troughs in demand, supply chain snarl-ups and the evolution of customer communications have all been borne out of a turbulent two years. 

But perhaps the most pertinent and permanent change has been retail’s heightened focus on people, purpose and culture.

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