Unilever SA’s views on the current sense of urgency and the importance of curiosity
In this week’s Business Unusual podcast, Topco Media CEO, Ralf Fletcher is joined by Unilever SA Executive Vice President, Luc-Olivier Marquet.
Born in France, Luco has worked in some of the most sought-after destinations in the world, from Mexico to Miami. He joined Unilever in August 2013 as Vice President for Unilever West Africa and Vice Chairman for the Board of Unilever Ghana Limited. Having worked all over the world, Luco brings with him knowledge not only in the realm of the workplace, but also on an interpersonal level. Ralf and Luco discuss the challenges we are facing as a society during this global pandemic, the current social justice movements that we are seeing and how, when it comes down to it, the time for change is now – we are facing a sense of urgency and have no more time to waste.
Key takeaways to listen out for in this podcast:
- Life is about taking risks – both in and outside the workplace.
- It is hugely important to create a safe space for employees of all races to not only express their discomfort and frustrations, but also to simply express themselves.
- The current social justice movements in the world are showing us that there is no more time – there is an absolute sense of urgency for all of us to act now.
- It’s going to take a long time for the world to recover from the current global pandemic. We need to adapt to consumer needs and circumstances if we want to move forward.
- It’s vital to take into account the necessary balance between IQ and EQ. The personality of each individual, qualifications and work aside, is extremely important in the workplace.
- In terms of principles, curiosity and adaptability, young people are fundamental in the trajectory going forward.
Luc-Olivier Marquet, Executive Vice President of Unilever South Africa has 27 years’ experience in the FMCG industry, most of which was spent in developing and emerging markets. A French national, Luco worked for the L’Oreal group in Europe, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Miami and the Philippines until 2013 and led as the President and Managing Director of L’Oreal in the Philippines. His background includes working in Marketing (Brand Building and Brand Development), before moving to Customer Development as a Key Account Manager, then into Travel Retail (Europe and Americas). He has 10 years’ experience as a Country Managing Director with L’Oreal.
He joined Unilever in August 2013 as Vice President for Unilever West Africa and Vice Chairman for the Board of Unilever Ghana Limited. He was Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for Unilever Cote D’Ivoire. In that role, he was responsible for developing Unilever business in the 13 countries west of Nigeria, which includes 3 operating companies (Ghana, Cote D’Ivoire, and Niger) and representation offices.