From a fresh graduate to the Head of People Team
Sutida Chansomboon started her first step with Bluebik Group as a fresh graduate before she became Head of People Team of Bluebik Group in just 3 years. Surely, her HR career path must be challenging and interesting having to deal with many people.
From an Arts student to the Head of People Team
“I’ve never given it a thought about what to do after graduation. The only thought I had then was that I can only work as a secretary or HR so I applied for everything when looking for a job. Finally, I got a job as a secretary to Pakorn Jiemskultip, CTO of Bluebik Group. At that time, there were less than 10 people in the company. Any secretarial job I’ve seen on TV such as taking phone calls or following the boss around was hardly my job at all. I ended up taking care of everything around the company. It’s been that way until the company grew much bigger from only 10 staff to so many. Finally, someone had to seriously take care of all the HR functions. Management team called me in to discuss my career path which I still had the same thought as to when I first started that I could not do much with my knowledge and ability. This left me with an HR role that I never tried before so I informed them I would like to take on this role. They gave me the opportunity and trusted me who had no idea about the job, never had done it and did not have any passion to do the job at all. Looking from a management perspective, it was a huge risk that the company took giving me this job. However, that’s the start of my journey. From not knowing and not sure about what the future would bring, I started to take it seriously and slowly discovering myself through my daily work.”
What makes Bluebik Special?
Opportunity and People
“When I first started, Pakorn Jiemskultip told me about connecting the dots but I did not understand how some back-office work that I was doing would lead to any good opportunity in life. My main responsibilities were documentation, routine work and it would finish day by day. However, today, I have more responsibilities, I realize that all the skill sets I’ve gathered from working in the past help. Nothing I’ve done in the past is ever wasted. If you are allowed to try new things and to learn various kinds of work or challenging work that is beyond your safe zone, it will benefit you to expand your ability. This is what makes Bluebik special by giving an opportunity to everyone.”
“People matter is also special here. Personally, I value work conditions and workplace climate because I’d like to spend 8-9 hours a day in a pleasant environment with nice people. Working is stressful and tiring as it is. If we have to spend working hours in a bad environment or with the people we can’t get along, it creates too much discomfort and impotence. On the other hand, being around a good team that can work together makes us enjoy the work even more. When the work is too hard and not going that well, laughing at silly little things with a good team or talking about it and letting it out helps us in our bad times. I see the peace of mind that I get from tiny things around me as an ingredient for happiness. I’m grateful that I’m lucky enough to find it here.”
My view of HR
“I think HR is the middleman who links communication of management and staff together. It means that HR knows the company information, conditions, and any limits. At the same time, as an employee, HR also has the needs, ideas, and perspective of an employee like everybody else. Every project I do, I think for all the parties involved. I start from what the team wants then looking at it from the company’s point of view as well. I have to make sure what the team wants aligns with the direction the company is heading, all parties will benefit and who will lose their benefit from the project that I’m doing. There’s a time that I know of what the team wants to make changes to something, I like a person who has insight from both the company and the employees and know the context of it, will need to communicate both perspectives to create a mutual understanding of the two parties.”
The most challenging task in HR career
“We all know that almost 100% of HR job is to deal with people. We get involved from their first day, on their good days and their bad days, until the day they leave the company. My job is not just selecting the right people to join the company but I have to take good care of them during the time they spend with us in the company. This is why, as an HR person, communicating, working and building relationships with staff who have different characteristics, personalities and habits is the most challenging work for me. I’m not even talking about the different educational background from many different fields of study that is driving different thinking systems of people. When the company grew bigger and has diversity, I keep reminding myself of what I intend to do, which is to treat all with respect. I will treat everyone in the company equally, understand them and honor them in their differences. I also value each individual as a unique person. We never know how what we say or do will affect others. We may have good intentions but the other end does not get it or misinterpret it. It is like when we throw a pebble on the water surface, we never know how wide the ripples it creates. It is the same as communication, we have to think carefully about what we try to communicate. We have to understand the difference and accept each individual.”
How did you overcome that?
“It is the continuous work that needs constant development. One thing that I’m still doing is to restrain my thoughts, think twice or more to make sure that what I’m about to say or do is good and acceptable for everyone. I need to be more sensitive to my behavior. I choose my words carefully because different groups of listeners are equally important. Sometimes, I’m worried about how to create a positive perception toward my message and intension or if I make them feel bad, how I can recover their good feelings. I do not think it is spoiling people but it is taking care of each other. It is the same as we take care of our family members, friends, and relatives. We all want them to be in a good environment.”
What Bluebik can the candidates see in you?
“One thing we want very much for the candidates to see is our identity and our people. From the moment they walk into the office until they leave, we will present them with Bluebik’s perspective through an interview and other conversations. The reason why we insist on doing this is that we know the candidates can get any information regarding the company easily but the climate and the feel of the office are not easily found from anywhere other than seeing it for themselves. However, you will need to check with our new joiners whether this is true. Or you can apply for a job here to check.”
How Bluebik and you will grow?
“It is like I was just born when I first joined Bluebik and Bluebik was only 2 years old at that time so it is like I have an older brother that is 2 years older than me to grow up with. We both just started our lives, tried and failed, learned and grew together until now. We are now old enough to know ourselves, have our goals and our future is much clearer. At the same time, we still have each other along the way. We still have so many things we want to try. Many opportunities are given to us and we also have many challenges and problems to deal with. There are also a lot of fun activities that we are looking forward to waiting for us.”
Surely, starting from ground zero is not easy but with good intention, willingness to gain more experience and the company that always has an opportunity for people, Sutida is now a proud Head of People team of Bluebik.