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2024 Star Women in Grocery Award Winner Andrea Olave (Q&A)

Shining-Level Star
2024 star women
Andrea Olave

Andrea Olave 

Director, Human Resources Corporate
Kruger Products

How did you start your career in CPG? 

I began my career in the dynamic world of retail, where I honed my skills and expertise over 15 years. Transitioning into the CPG industry felt like a natural progression, leveraging my extensive experience in retail to excel in HR within the CPG sector.

How would you describe your coaching style? 

My coaching and counselling style can be best described as maintaining a careful balance between allowing individuals the room to independently navigate their challenges and offering direct solutions when needed. Central to my method is the cultivation of trust with both employees and leaders, ensuring they feel confident in my intentions and the support I provide. 

What have you learned about promoting DE&I within an organization? 

My most significant learning in implementing DE&I programs revolves around the transformative power of leadership characterized by empathy and compassion. When leaders prioritize creating a safe and inclusive environment, employees feel valued and empowered to bring their authentic selves to work. From my experience, not only is it the right thing to do, but this enhances morale and productivity and cultivates a culture of belonging where everyone thrives.

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What do you like most about your job? 

The diversity it offers. Wearing multiple hats keeps me engaged and challenged. However, what truly fuels my passion is the opportunity to make a positive impact on an individual’s lives. Whether it's fostering confidence or guiding someone through difficult circumstances, being able to support and coach others is incredibly rewarding and is the driving force behind why I do what I do.

What do you consider the biggest challenge in your career? 

During the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, I encountered one of the most formidable challenges as a working parent with a young child. The juggling act of managing both professional responsibilities and childcare was an unforeseen hurdle that demanded creative solutions and unwavering dedication. Every morning, I embarked on the delicate balancing act of fostering an enriching work environment for my colleagues while simultaneously ensuring my 23-month-old daughter remained stimulated and cared for. Surmounting this challenge was not only a testament to my resilience and adaptability, but also a profound achievement in making a positive impact both professionally and personally.

What is a fun fact about you? 

My love for crafting culinary delights for my family. I love exploring new ingredients and pairing them with wines expertly chosen by my husband, who, in my opinion, has impeccable taste. This culinary journey has evolved into a cherished stress reliever over the years, which I then enjoy with my favourite companions, my husband and our two daughters.

Click here for the full list of 2024 Star Women in Grocery award winners.

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