#HROS Community Spotlight: Meet Katee!

HR Open Source is the community. We’re doing cool things like sharing practitioner generated case studies but we’re also about connecting HR and Talent Acquisition professionals to resources, ideas and to each other.

I, for one, love everything about that. 

In this week’s blog post, and in the spirit of connections, allow me to introduce a member of the #HROS and HR community, Katee Van Horn, an HR Leader with GoDaddy. I first met Katee a few years ago when, thankfully, I randomly chose a seat next to her at an event in San Diego. We ended up hanging together for several days, drank a cocktail or two, and never looked back. She even popped down to New Orleans a few weeks back on a business trip and we got to cruise about town and indulge in beer (for her), wine (for me), and peanut-butter-bacon burgers; quite the tasty combination!

I think she’s just awesomely smart, inspiring, and doing great things in the field of human resources. She’s also, as you will learn, representative of the spirit of #HROS. Let's see what she has to say...

Who IS Katee?

Who am I? I’m glad you asked. I’m an HR superhero. I leap small leaders in a single bound. I corral cats with my magic lasso. Capes? Not for me. Totally unnecessary. I’m a name-taking rockstar without it. Laser eyes? Levitation? Whatever works. Whatever helps me use my powers for good, not for evil.

What’s your role at GoDaddy? What’s a typical week like for you?

I’m the Vice President of People Operations. A typical week? That doesn’t really happen (as most HR folks know). Most weeks I am meeting with my leaders and their teams to devise ways to make GoDaddy better. We focus on building great teams and an amazing organization by supporting the business goals. 

What are some cool HR, Talent Acquisition or Leadership things you’re working on with your team or within the company? 

Right now we’re building out mentoring rings to support development and growth for our underrepresented employees. We chose to go this route versus the typical mentor program because we found that folks had an easier time talking with a group and building relationships together versus forced mentorship based only on career paths. We piloted this program last year and had great engagement from our teams. We are excited to bring this to the entire organization and will focus on tracking promotion and other stats to determine success.

We’re also focusing on a new way to do succession planning; we want to make sure these plans are impactful to the organization and not just a piece of paper with some names. We’re using resources from CEB and what other top tech companies are doing – I’ll keep you posted on how this works!

Can you share a time when you were inspired and/or learned from HR peers, friends or colleagues?

Every. Single. Day. I was at a conference recently that had some of the typical curmudgeonly HR folks in attendance, but I could also see some of the next generation of HR emerging. Folks who understand Human Resources is not just a support function. People who know the impact we have on the organization. They understand the impact we can have to the bottom line by the work we do for our people. I was excited and impressed by these amazing peers from organizations throughout the globe.

GoDaddy is involved in some fascinating initiatives related to Women in Tech. What are some things the company is doing in this area?

You bet we are and we will continue to push the focus on all of our underrepresented folks. Specifically for women in Tech, we partnered with the Clayman Institute out of Stanford University. They have done some amazing work on unconscious bias — something everyone has. That’s interesting to think about. Every single person has some sort of unconscious bias! Working with Clayman, we asked them to sit in on our talent review meeting with our senior leadership team. They were able to identify gaps in the way we were speaking about and calibrating men versus women and how to correct those gaps. They also reviewed the tools that we use to call out any inconsistencies or places where we could be better about making it a level playing field for men and women. We looked at our annual performance review forms and process, our peer/partner feedback tool, and our leveling guides (our version of job descriptions).

Our continued focus at GoDaddy is to grow all of our diverse groups and to maintain an inclusive culture.

Who, or what, inspires you to be a better HR professional?

I'm inspired by the underdog. I want to work on tough problems for folks that seem insurmountable and help our folks get to a great place where they can do the best work of their lives. I want to help eliminate roadblocks - remember those super powers I mentioned before? I will use it as needed to bring goodness to the organization.


Thanks to Katee for taking the time to share her story with the #HROS community – and I hope we can bring her back to write a case study on that Succession Planning!                                       

You can connect with her on LinkedIn, Twitter and her blog. You can also catch up with her at April’s HR Tech Fest where she’ll be leading a session on “Many to One: GoDaddy’s Culture Story.”



Robin SchoolingComment