Leadership in the Age of Disruptive Technologies: Interview with Katrona Tyrrell, Chief People Officer, FARO Technologies

With an extensive background and experience in building, maintaining and leading talent and corporate culture strategies, Katrona Tyrrell was appointed as Chief People Officer in January this year.

Prior to joining FARO, Ms. Tyrrell served as the Global Senior Vice President – Human Resources in Idt Corporation where she led a team that was responsible for global succession planning, leadership development, performance management, employee engagement, and organizational effectiveness.

Ms. Tyrrell holds a post-graduate diploma in strategic management from Crawley College in the U.K.

  1. FARO Editorial Team (FET): Following the ‘Renewal’ efforts of FARO, the company has gone through positive changes and growth with the establishment of the vertical sales and product management business units. How is the role of the HR function within FARO responding to the current aims and challenges of the business?
    Katrona Tyrrell (KT): The Global HR team have been working on many strategic initiatives to respond to the positive changes within FARO.  Over the last ten months, we have launched numerous initiatives such as offering training and development courses through and a revamp of our orientation practices globally.  Our aim is to unleash the organization’s energy and leverage its worldwide Human Resources function.
  1. FET:  What are you focused on right now?
    KT:  We are focused on Succession Planning as one of our main 2018 initiatives as well as moving to a Global payroll solution.
  1. FET: What do you see as the main challenge that your HR function faces in the future?
    KT: For a company to remain competitive and relevant in the dynamic business landscape, there are couple of challenges the HR function faces now which will extend into the future. One of the main challenges is to continue building a global mindset and ethical culture for our employees, and to attract talent.  We will also have to keep up to date with technology, and how we can use it to our best advantage; understand, adapt and leverage on economic and demographic changes; and use data to drive excellent HR practices.
  1. FET: What would you say are characteristics of a good leader in today’s disruptive age?
    KT: A good leader is someone who has integrity with emotional intelligence to understand the needs of the employees. He/she has to be forward thinking and can plan for the future – identifying potential threats and opportunities as well as making positive change to the organizational culture.  Leaders should be innovative, passionate about what they do and possess abilities to build strong strategies and express strategic vision. They must also be problem solvers with the agility to change direction as necessary and of course, are excellent communicators.
  1. FET: What do you love most about your role?
    KT:  Everything!  FARO is an exceptional company with exceptional employees.  I love the daily challenges and opportunities and of being able to work closely with a highly technical and global team.

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