When I received this assignment it took a little thought to decide who I wanted to profile in my paper. Since how I work for HEB, I have many people in the HR field that I could have interviewed. After considering all my options I decided to go all the way to the top of HEB’s HR in Central Texas. The reason I wanted to interview the Central Texas Director of Human Resource for H-E-B is so others will know how much pride HEB takes in their Human Resource department and the type of person it takes to be the Director of Human Resources at HEB.
In order for one to be considered for this position one would have to have exquisite people skills and a heart and spirit for helping. This is why I chose Mr. Vic Nivens, the Director of Human Resources for the Central Texas area with HEB. Vic has worked for HEB for over 20 years. He started as a bagger in 1992 where he was promoted very quickly. In 1993 Vic took part in helping HEB roll out the first store administrative role. From there he became a grocery manager for 6 months and a year and a half later he applied for HEB’s SORL (School of Retail Leadership).
Upon graduating from this program, he became an Assistant Store Director and soon became a Unit Director. Vic was offered a job as the Director of Customer Service; which he held for 2 years. HEB soon realized they had a better position for a man with such passion for people. This is where he received the title of Director of Human Resources. Vic now oversees 73 stores and over 17,000 Partners. He has 9 Partners that are on his team and they take care of the Central Texas region. During my interview with Vic, I asked him list of questions that I thought would be important for anyone considering a job in the Human Resource department.
My first question to “Vic what was some of the responsibilities that come with his job title? ” His response was simple; he said,” To take care of each and every Partner. ” Vic says, “It is HEB’s culture to take care of their Partners in any way that they can. ” HEB is a family oriented establishment, started by Florence Butt to help provide money to help her family, but also provided all excess food free to those who needed it daily at closing time. In efforts to continue HEB’s culture to take care of others HEB ensures that all Partners uphold the Bold Promise- each and every person counts.
HEB’s Partners role model this at all possible opportunities. For example last year when Bastrop and the surrounding communities had wild fires, HEB came in and helped the community. HEB interviewed those in need to see what they needed. HEB never asked any of the victims for proof that they had been displaced by the tragic fire. That’s what Vic means when he says,’to take care of each and every Partner. ” In my interview with Vic I proceeded to ask him,” what are some of the challenges that come with your job title? ’ Vic’s response wasn’t quick; in fact he took a little time and finally responded with,” making sure everyone’s needs are met. When you are over-see 73 stores with over 17,000 Partners in your region it can be difficult at times to get to every Partners situation within a timely manner.
Sometimes the situations may be more serious and might take some investigative work in order to come to the best decision for that particular situation. Vic did assure me that every Partner is always taken care of and no one is ever left out. The last question I felt I needed to ask Vic in his interview was simple, “what are the rewards that come with being the Director of Human Resources? Vic face lit up when I asked him this question and without hesitation he responded with, “the greatest reward is going home knowing that you have helped your Partners because you wanted to help them and not because you are receiving anything in return. “ Helping is the way of HEB and to be in Human Resources you have to have a servant’s heart. Human Resources is not about you and what the best result for your own self is it’s always about the Partner and what is best for them. Hearing this come from Vic assured me that I really work for a great company.
When I did this interview with Vic, I was on the fence about which way I wanted to go with my career at HEB. If you asked me today if I would ever want Vic’s job the answer is YES! I think that being able to give people positive spirit and heart as well as being able to give push back when things aren’t right is what Human Resources is all about. Human Resources may not be for everyone but it’s a great thing that all companies should have. It gives the employees someone on that is on their side. I truly believe after this interview that HEB has a great Human Resource team that is always going to do what is right for the Partner.