Susanna Rothfuchs brings over 30 years of experience in HR to the Executive Advisor role at McLean & Company, where she supports and guides HR leaders to map out their HR strategy and prioritize HR initiatives that will have a measurable impact on the business.
In this Q&A, Susanna talks about her career, what drew her to this role, and what advice she would give to new HR leaders.
How did you get your start in HR?
I started my career in technology working in both sales and pre-sales support of major technology vendors. I was struck by the lack of leadership skills that many of the managers had and the challenges that women in the technology industry were facing. It inspired me to move into HR where I could have an impact in those areas. My first role was as a technology recruiter, which leveraged my technology background while transitioning into HR. From there, I became an HR business partner and continued to grow and develop my HR and leadership skills.
What does your role as an executive advisor involve? What drew you to it?
The executive advisor role focuses on working with HR leaders to clarify their priorities and leverage McLean & Company’s great offerings, including data-driven research and practical tools, to develop actionable next steps. I’m excited to be back at McLean & Company in the executive advisor role. I’m passionate about talent and the impact people have on organizations and business outcomes. I really enjoy working with HR leaders to support their success in delivering value toward their organization’s mission.
What do you do to take care of yourself?
I’m an avid cyclist and committed to fitness and wellness. If I’m not out on the trails and bike paths, I’m training indoors. I participate in the Ride to Conquer Cancer annually as a way of combining cycling and fundraising for an important cause. I’m also a dedicated dog mom, so I spend a lot of time outdoors hiking and walking my active pup. I love to travel and take real breaks on my adventures where cell phone service might be somewhat limited.
What advice do you have for someone starting out as an HR leader?
Learn the business – understand how the business makes money and where the value is. Listen. Consider what you can do to add value to the organization’s success. Think in business terms even in those HR areas which are legislated.
Build relationships with your colleagues inside of HR. They are allies to your success. Be collaborative and partner within HR. Don’t feel like you need to do it all alone.
Build relationships and trust with organizational leaders. I encourage any HR leader to find their voice and confidence with senior leaders. While it can be intimidating to let a senior leader know what you think when you’re a new HR leader, you’re often one of the only people who can give the straight goods and become the trusted advisor/confidante.
To learn more about our Executive Services and how McLean & Company will partner with you to accelerate completion of targeted HR priorities that ultimately drive your organization’s critical business objectives forward, please visit us at McLean Executive Services or contact Jon Campbell at email@example.com.