The Tasting Panel magazine

September 2017

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120  /  the tasting panel  /  september 2017 E ach month we team up with the beverage industry recruiting and staffing experts at BevForce and they chat with one of their Movers & Shakers to get behind-the-scenes insight on the job search process, the beverage industry's most innovative companies and the executives who drive them. This month, BevForce chatted with Rachel Seder, who is the Vice President of Talent Acquisition/ Diversity & Inclusion at Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits. She spoke about her role, the mentors who inspire her, the initiatives she's taken to help narrow the industry's gender gap and more. Read on to learn what it's like leading talent acquisition at the nation's largest beverage distributor. Force Brands: Given your experience in recruiting top talent, what piece of industry advice do you think candi- dates transitioning into the beverage industry might find most valuable? Rachel Seder: When you are transition- ing into a privately-held, family-owned company—and now one of the largest in the nation—you need to expect some uniqueness that comes from those two facts [being private and family-owned]. Decisions are still made 100 percent by the family—if you don't have that experience or are coming from a large publicly-held company, the adjustment may be steeper than others. FB: You participated in Women of the Vine Global Symposium, which supports the advancement of women in the alcohol industry. What other initia- tives have you taken to help narrow the industry's gender gap? RS: Along with leading talent acquisi- tion, I also head up our diversity and inclusion initiatives. Our overall strategy for diversity in inclusion is "Cheers to Diversity." Specifically regarding women in the workplace, we partner with various organizations (i.e. Network of Executive Women) to continue to provide opportunities for our women to explore and be a part of. FB: Let's chat leadership—a recurring theme among Millennials who are hungry for more career development and training. Who are some of your biggest career mentors and how did you go about finding them? RS: I think that most of my mentors came about just through relationship- building. I have a variety of "unofficial" mentors within SGWS and outside that I can go to and just bounce ideas off of or listen to for advice on how I can become a better leader. A true mentor won't coddle you—they will tell it like it is, and it can sometimes be hard to hear. But in the end, it will make you a better leader. FB: Looking ahead, what do you foresee as the biggest hiring trend to come, and how are you preparing for it? RS: The biggest hiring trends and chal- lenges come with our Millennials—they are going to represent more than 50 percent of our total workforce in the near future and we need to continue to understand what motivates them to want to come to our company, but more importantly, what motivates them to stay with our company. FB: Just for fun, if you could be drink- ing your favorite cocktail anywhere in the world right now, what would it be and where? RS: I am pretty boring when it comes to cocktails—but vodka on the rocks with a splash of grapefruit juice is a go-to. Tuscany—that's my next European vacation. A couple of years ago I was fortunate to explore Southern Italy—now it's time to explore the northern region. PHOTO COURTESY OF RACHEL SEDER Rachel Seder VICE PRESIDENT OF TALENT ACQUISITION/DIVERSITY & INCLUSION, SOUTHERN GLAZER'S WINE & SPIRITS

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