Meet the Team: Q&A with Laura Nigri (People Program Manager)

by Hadean Team

What is your role at Hadean? What does an average week look like for you?

My role at Hadean is People Program Manager, centered around Get, Keep, Grow. We’re currently in a crucial period of scaling up the business and we’re determined to find the best talent for Hadean, so I’ve been driving a number of people initiatives. 

Developing our current team is also a key part of this, a big part of my role is striking the balance between enabling independent growth while still mapping it to the company’s overall direction and growth. One of our methods is our job level system, that provides an infrastructure for supporting scalable growth. It gives people clarity on how and where they can grow in the future, creating progression pathways. Partnering with the business on this allows us to better optimise and adapt our people planning and management.

Maintaining an organisational design that keeps people working effectively and efficiently is also a key part of my role, and the global events of the last year have put an even bigger emphasis on this initiative. With so much distance between us all, there was huge importance placed on sustaining communication across departments, supporting employer-employee relationships and generally trying to maintain a level of socialisation, there are only so many Friday Zoom drinks that we can all take! 

What do you enjoy most about your job?

Simple really – the people. Everyone at Hadean is incredibly passionate about what they do and it’s brilliant being able to observe all aspects of the business through them. Creating projects and schemes that add value to the business while also making people’s lives better is incredibly fulfilling. Often I have to strike a balance between the people’s needs, the company’s and overall costs and it’s satisfying when the ‘sweet spot’ is found.

What led you to the role of People Program Manager at Hadean?

Previously I worked in talent acquisition at Wargaming, which was a big company in terms of number of employees, but often described as a 4,000 person start up in terms of their approach to agility. I then moved to managing operations across a couple of small tech start ups, where I definitely enjoyed the breadth of the roles. Hadean’s approach to disrupting the gaming industry and being primed for rapid growth was particularly exciting for me to join. 

What top three skills or traits do you think someone needs to pursue a role as a People Program Manager?

Firstly, pragmatism. Being able to transform ideas and discussion into executable actions is important in any role, but is especially pertinent to mine. Secondly, I would say emotional intelligence is key. The diversity in knowledge, skill sets and personalities at Hadean is a core value of ours but it requires being empathetic to different viewpoints to fully utilise the power of everyone. Following this up with the correct kind of communication and messaging allows you to get the best out of everyone and their ideas. Finally I would say resilience. This comes with working in a start up in many ways, particularly when understanding that compromises have to be made. 

What are some of the most exciting challenges you face day-to-day and how do you overcome them?

One of the biggest challenges is prioritisation. We’d always like to do more than we have time for, and so making sure we’re driving the tasks that are most impactful is really important. Being critical of our roadmap and constantly questioning it is one of the ways we try and keep on top of this. 

How would you describe Hadean’s culture?

Our ambition and activity make for a fast paced environment, fuelled by a shared passion for our mission. The fundamental technological problem that Hadean is solving affects a multitude of industries, which is incredibly exciting for everyone involved. This feeds into the high level of trust in our culture, you can really feel that every person wants to move the company forward. Finally, one of our core values is Growth mindset, for me I would say this translates to the idea of always being in beta. Never being satisfied with what we’ve done and seeking ideas to further better ourselves has been key to our success so far, and we intend to keep it up. 

What would you say is the most fulfilling part of your role at Hadean?

Definitely seeing people grow and develop with the business. Seeing people achieve their potential, overcome challenges and ultimately contribute to the company in new ways is wonderful, from both a business perspective and a personal one.