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Top 20 HR leaders in the Middle East you need to follow | peopleHum
Leadership Development

Top 20 HR leaders in the Middle East you need to follow

HR blogs
Nirvi B
November 17, 2021
Human Resource Management Platform
10
mins

Change is a constant in the Middle East region, and the corporate leaders who consistently thrive there are individuals of remarkable agility and fortitude. From their experiences emerge powerful insights which help build bridges between the organisational present and future

"Leadership is not so much a function of the individual leader as it is a function of culture”

Leadership culture in this region has been shaped over centuries via factors that determine the needs of leadership, not all of which are always apparent to an outside observer. Thus, our team at peopleHum now stands excited to applaud the diverse, emerging, and prominent HR leaders in the Middle East who are spontaneous with their planned actions, to create organizational cultures driven by internal harmony, values and ideas of tomorrow.  

Top 20 HR Leaders in the Middle East you need to follow

1. Rohit Manucha

Rohit Manucha is the Chief Human Resources Officer at SIH-AGH. He is an experienced HR leader and coach with in-depth expertise in organizational transformation & effectiveness. He is also awarded at global levels with the titles, HR Director of the Year (across the MEA region), and also 100 most influential global HR professionals by World HRD Congress.  

2. Belgin Ertam

Belgin Ertam is the Regional HR Director for GE Middle East, North Africa, and Turkey (MENAT) as well as the Head of Organization and Talent Development for GE Global. She is particularly devoted in speeding leadership and talent development and creating culture change in global markets. She was also named one of the top 50 CHROs in Turkey by Fortune Magazine for her outstanding accomplishments as an HR professional. She is highly recognised as a forward-thinking manager who is committed to increasing the quality of her department

3. Hanna Nordell

Hanna Nordell is a Chief People Officer at Talabat, who has guided the organisation from humble beginnings to a strategic business partner to a voice for the people. She has previously led dynamic HR teams in the MENA and EMEA regions, with skills in general HR management, talent development, and talent acquisition. She is much recognised for her role as a business partner, problem solver, and most importantly, a people developer.

4. Fatima Abdulrahman Al Awadhi

Fatima Abdulrahman Al Awadhi is a Chief Human Resource Officer (CHRO) at Tanfeeth. She is the Vice President of the Emirates Institute of Banking and Financial Studies' Women’s Committee. She is one of the crucial forces behind promoting the influential role of women as employers and leaders in the banking and financial sector in the entirety of UAE.  

5. Dr Ghalib Al Hosni

Dr Ghalib Al Hosni is the Chief People Officer at Omantel and also its Board member. He is greatly recognised in the Middle Eastern region for his expertise in the areas of employee relations, team and performance management systems. He is also the Board Member and Vice President of the Arabian Society of Human Resources (ASHRM).  

6. Sara Boueri

Sara Boueri is the Senior Director of Human Resources at Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority. She believes the true alignment lies within the role of finance, being the key driver of HR to elevate strategic business results and company culture. She abides by the principle: HR for the people, and by the people. She also withholds a gamut of HR specialists, from Performance Management, Strategic Recruitment, to Learning and Development and Engagement.

7. Rodrigo Gil

Rodrigo Gil is the Head of Talent Acquisition at Al-Futtaim. He holds more than a decade of experience in Talent Acquisition and Employee Experience across multiple industries and geographies. Born and raised in Mexico, Rodrigo is much recognised for his ability to consistently challenge our teams to disrupt the status quo with innovative solutions. He is also adept at creating game-changing strategies that address the most complex talent opportunities.

8. Soha Chahine

Soha Chahine is a Career Strategist and Coach at Mindscape Coaching. She is a certified ICF-approved Team Coach with proven individual techniques in the domain of Human Resource Management. Being adept at both strategic and operational HR interventions, she is driven by a motto that relies on thriving for challenges and translating visions into actionable goals.  

9. Natalja Kissina

Natalja Kissina is the HR VP (Gulf regions) of Schneider Electric. She is well-versed in best-in-class HR procedures, having spent nearly a decade working in top international organisations. Natalja is appreciated for her commitment towards improving employee experiences and contributing to long-term business growth in organisations.  

10. Dominic Keogh-Peters

Dominic Keogh-Peters is the Group Director of People Operations at Axiom Telecom. He is also a keynote speaker, a Chartered Fellow of the CIPD and a lecturer at the PWC Academy. He is a widely recognised individual who is driven by the people agenda during the times of organisational change and transformation.

11. Gwen Dunne

Gwen Dunne is a seasoned HR professional at EWEC and the member of Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development. She is a qualified behaviourist with a prominent specialisation in Organisational Psychology. She is also an expert in Organisational Design, L&D and Engagement Subject Matter, owning a commendable approach towards ideation and strategic outlook.  

12. Sultan Albalawi

Sultan Albalawi is the HR Director at GE, fulfilling his role in the regions of KSA and Bahrain. Among his visions that contribute to corporate growth, he wishes to create inspiring organisational cultures. He is a trusted leader who leads by example, and wishes to empower the youth to flourish and enhance job satisfaction and loyalty.  

13. Debbie Simister

Debbie Simister is the Vice President at Accor, India, Middle East, Africa and Turkey. She is well-regarded to present and implement the best global practices for talent management & leadership development at an organisational level. With a vision to align business goals and senior leadership, Debbie is widely appreciated for her ability to identify the leadership competencies that may advance an organisation.

 

14. Ashok Gopal

Ashok Gopal is the Head of People Development and Employee Wellbeing at Mashreq Bank. With over 15 years of consulting experience in the Middle East region (and Asia-Pacific), he plays an eminent role in the areas of customer experience and engagement solutions. He is a well-regarded professional who has contributed some powerful insights on employee wellbeing and mental health.  

15. Hannah Matta

Hannah Matta is Group VP Talent Strategy & Analytics at Etisalat. She is a Chartered Business Psychologist passionate about driving business transformation through progressive people strategies. She is an honoured speaker who has delivered talks in a number of recognised conferences, such as HR Tech Mena Conference Dubai, drawing great insights upon workplace and occupational psychology.

Watch peopleHum's with Melissa Doman on Psychology as a Workplace Culture.

16. Majed Nasr

Majed Nasr is the Head of Human Resources at Johnson & Johnson, contributing in the regions of Middle East, Africa and Turkey. He is also a seasoned HR leader and Management Team member with a track record of success in a variety of sectors. Talent management, strategy, culture, M&A integration, and organisational design are the areas of his core expertise.

 

17. Ashely Boots

Ashely Boots is the Chief Human Resources Officer at the NMC Healthcare. Having worked in emerging markets of Middle East, Africa, and Asia, she possesses numerous areas of expertise like change management, leadership and strategic HR. With a structured, pragmatic and collegiate approach in resolving challenges, she is known to demonstrated strong leadership competencies, ability to manage diverse, complex relationships and a passion for organisational transformation.  

18. Caroline Werunga

Caroline Werunga is the Region HR Director of Field Core, UAE. She is a seasoned HR professional with extensive work experience in Middle East, Africa, India and Turkey. With commendable people management abilities, Caroline is a result-oriented HR specialist who values integrity and diligence towards her people centric approaches.  

19. Antoine Atallah

Antoine Atallah is the Head of Rewards, Payroll and People Analytics at Chalhoub Group. He is an accredited Global Remuneration Professional. He has also delivered noteworthy insights on the implementation of a smart, people-driven strategy at the Middle East’s largest summit and exhibition of HR professionals: HR Summit & Expo.  

20. Abhikalp Bhardwaj

Abhikalp Bhardwaj is the Head of Human Capital at Bee’ah. Similar to his peers in the list, he is a dynamic and efficient leader who can traverse both HR and project management operations and change management. He is known to excel at achieving meaningful results with his straightforward and inclusive approach, towards team building and engagement.  

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Sneha

October 25, 2021

A very inspiring list. Thanks for putting this together

Vanessa

October 25, 2021

This is such a great list of women leaders! More power to you all