Differentiated Leadership: Rob Navarrete of WTW on Big Fish in the Talent Pool

When you’re really “comfortable in your own skin”, how does that change things?  For starters, it probably means those you interact with can tell.  They may sense confidence, credibility, resiliency.  And leaders with this quality are typically easier to follow, as others gravitate to their clarity of purpose and sense of security.

All those descriptors and more apply to Robert Navarrete, the Director and Head of Talent Acquisition for Willis Towers Watson, NA. The only thing Rob regrets, he told me in our recent Big Fish in the Talent Pool interview, is not getting to that happy place earlier.  “Not feeling more comfortable in my own skin earlier in my career might have been a mistake for me.” And he’s not alone, of course.  As the saying goes, “I wish I knew then what I know now” applies to most of us. 

As a Canadian with Hispanic heritage, and a member of the LGBT+ community, what Rob didn’t embrace until later, he said, were the very things that differentiated him, making him uniquely qualified to lead a function like recruitment which requires a heavy dose of empathy to succeed.   Thankfully, his self-acceptance evolved as Rob did over time, from recruiter, to sourcer, to global people manager roles with SAS, Capital One, and Aon’s Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) business.

Reflecting on that growth, and where his multi-diverse perspective has brought him to today, Rob observes, “It’s important to listen, to adapt, stay curious, and to leverage the strengths of others.”  Comfortable in his own skin?  You bet!

We hope you enjoy the fast-paced chat on Big Fish in the Talent Pool – the podcast for Talent Leaders.  If you do, please be sure to rate and review us.  We’d love your feedback and it will help others find us.

Erin McDermott Peterson is a Partner with PeopleResults, helping clients with global recruiting interim leadership, RPO advisory, and ensuring a great candidate experience.  Follow her on Twitter @ErinMcPeterson, connect via linkedin.com/in/erinpeterson or email at epeterson@people-results.com and listen to her Podcast for Talent Leaders: Big Fish in the Talent Pool on iTunes and SoundCloud, or wherever you access podcasts.

We hope you’ll listen and be inspired.