Q&A: Damir Kucan


What is your role?

As HR executive general manager at Crown Perth, I lead a team covering recruitment, learning and development, HR operations and OH&S.

I get a lot of satisfaction out of being part of a successful executive team and seeing my own team deliver outcomes that are valued and appreciated.

What has been your greatest challenge?

Meeting the needs of a business that has doubled in the past nine years and continues to grow.

What changes have you witnessed in the HR profession?

When markets deregulated there was an increasing focus on efficiency and productivity and that’s when HR took its first steps in searching for new ways to engage and align people to the needs of the business. Although HR had some successes, I think it also lost credibility as it latched onto costly fads and pop-psychology initiatives. We now have the opportunity to enter into a new phase of development as we draw on our experiences, the results of scientific research and insights into human behaviour.

What skills are needed in HR today?

HR practitioners need to do three things:

  • Develop personally in terms of professional competence, self-awareness and emotional management as leaders.
  • Understand their brand intimately and develop, maintain and protect it.
  • Adapt to the changing business environment and offer solutions that are evidence-based, have scientific validity and show a return on investment.

How do you achieve employee engagement?

A key focus of our development efforts is in leadership.

  • Supervisors and managers create work environments where people feel good about themselves and the work they perform.
  • We invest in staff promotions, competitions and events, which recognise the great contribution our people make to the success of our business.
  • We have increased effort in people and career development with the launch of Crown College Perth, and currently have more than 800 trainees, with a target of 1400 trainees in 2014/15.

Why was Crown the first AEC signatory?

Crown Ltd was the first signatory to the Australian Employment Covenant (AEC) and Crown Perth was the first employer of an Aboriginal employee under the AEC. We set ourselves three objectives:

  • To create real jobs.
  • Build sustainability.
  • Encourage future growth.

So far, we have provided job opportunities for more than 180 Aboriginal employees. Together with Crown Melbourne, we have a vision of “Changing 2000 Lives by 2021”.

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Q&A: Damir Kucan


What is your role?

As HR executive general manager at Crown Perth, I lead a team covering recruitment, learning and development, HR operations and OH&S.

I get a lot of satisfaction out of being part of a successful executive team and seeing my own team deliver outcomes that are valued and appreciated.

What has been your greatest challenge?

Meeting the needs of a business that has doubled in the past nine years and continues to grow.

What changes have you witnessed in the HR profession?

When markets deregulated there was an increasing focus on efficiency and productivity and that’s when HR took its first steps in searching for new ways to engage and align people to the needs of the business. Although HR had some successes, I think it also lost credibility as it latched onto costly fads and pop-psychology initiatives. We now have the opportunity to enter into a new phase of development as we draw on our experiences, the results of scientific research and insights into human behaviour.

What skills are needed in HR today?

HR practitioners need to do three things:

  • Develop personally in terms of professional competence, self-awareness and emotional management as leaders.
  • Understand their brand intimately and develop, maintain and protect it.
  • Adapt to the changing business environment and offer solutions that are evidence-based, have scientific validity and show a return on investment.

How do you achieve employee engagement?

A key focus of our development efforts is in leadership.

  • Supervisors and managers create work environments where people feel good about themselves and the work they perform.
  • We invest in staff promotions, competitions and events, which recognise the great contribution our people make to the success of our business.
  • We have increased effort in people and career development with the launch of Crown College Perth, and currently have more than 800 trainees, with a target of 1400 trainees in 2014/15.

Why was Crown the first AEC signatory?

Crown Ltd was the first signatory to the Australian Employment Covenant (AEC) and Crown Perth was the first employer of an Aboriginal employee under the AEC. We set ourselves three objectives:

  • To create real jobs.
  • Build sustainability.
  • Encourage future growth.

So far, we have provided job opportunities for more than 180 Aboriginal employees. Together with Crown Melbourne, we have a vision of “Changing 2000 Lives by 2021”.

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