Interview with Pamela Kiwan, HR & Recruitment Specialist at Cedarcom, Beirut, Lebanon

Pamela holds a Masters Degree in Management&Marketing from the Lebanese University in Beirut. With over 4 years of experience in the Recruitment & HR field in various industries with regional companies in the United Arab Emirates, Pamela today heads the HR department at Cedarcom – Mobi in Beirut, Lebanon.

1. How do you like living and working in Lebanon?
Beirut has always been referred to as the Paris of the Middle East, and it’s true. Beirut’s been to war and back, time and over again but still maintains its status as a Top destination for tourists from all over the world, all year long. Working conditions have gotten better post 2006 and we are still on a rise. I trust the best is yet to come for the Lebanese job market.

2.What is your average day at work like?
In one word: Hectic! Between meetings with management, catering to staff’s needs, updating HR policies and procedures and the daily tasks, the day flies by quite fast!

3. What is your biggest professional challenge?
Making a difference in the environment I work on – Always striving for excellence and aiming to make more senior positions available for top achievers in a multinational environment!

4. What is the most important thing you look for in new hires?
Positive attitude, willingness to learn, a genuine potential to be a leader and industry knowledge.

5. What is the biggest challenge you face in hiring talent?
Managing candidates’ salary expectations is never an easy task.

6. What is your favorite part of your role?
The part I like best is working on instilling healthy HR strategies and then witnessing them flourish such as enhancement of positive culture, on- boarding, performance appraisals, training budgeting, etc…)

7. What do you read to keep abreast of industry developments?
I am an avid online reader, so everything from Vault to SHRM is really a daily ritual for me. I trust reading is indispensable not only for my professional but also my personal development.

8. What is your advice to someone looking to enter the field of HR?
Being Flexibility is key in the HR industry and excellent interpersonal skills are also vital factors – Always aim to be the good achiever example and strive to maintain a sense of balance between the interests of the company and those of the employees.

9. How do you see the Middle East evolve as a place to practice HR?
HR in the Middle Easy has definitely improved in the past decade but more emphasis should be placed on main HR practices such as rewards and recognition of employees, fostering and supporting the creation of future leaders at the Middle East workplace and why not a new generation of CEOs?!

10. If you could wave your magic stick and make a significant development in one specific area of HR practices worldwide, where would that fall?
To focus on empowering people and support and encourage the creation and development of a future generation of CEOs & leaders.

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