Chief people officer

In April 2016, Alibaba became the majority shareholder of e-commerce business Lazada Group. As head of the newly formed people team at Lazada, Tim Rath’s challenge was to define and communicate a new organisational vision that would transform the ‘doer’ mindset of the staff to one of long-term strategic leaders, and to empower the new team to be champions of change within the organisation. Though his current role as chief people officer is his first experience in HR, Rath has ably tapped into his non-HR experience for fresh perspectives and out-of-the-box thinking, and recruited from a variety of professional backgrounds to form a diverse team for the people division. After organising an internal communications team to communicate the new change strategy and vision to over 5,000 employees across eight countries, Rath and his team rolled out a framework for talent development and introduced new KPIs for long-term growth. Rath will be concentrating on L&D and ‘culture-shaping’ in 2017, with continued investment in the Lazada College and the launch of ‘Cultural Ambassador’ and ‘DNA Session’ initiatives.