Hiring the VP of Social Responsibility at Lego

21 January 2020 by Sean Desouza
blog author

​Ambitious sustainable materials and renewable energy targets triggered the expansion of Lego’s Social Responsibility and Engagement Team, and in turn created the need for an individual who would define Lego’s social and environmental responsibility approach. Reporting to the company’s main leadership board and specifically to Lego’s CFO, this individual would take responsibility for providing leadership for the global Social Responsibility Team, developing the impact of the function and reinforcing the reputation of the corporate brand.

Un-biased candidate assessment:

Acre was tasked with both undertaking a full global search, and managing Lego’s internal applicants. In order to ensure both demographics were assessed consistently, Acre designed a series of questions which addressed the technical and non-technical competencies of the role. Acre undertook detailed interviewing and candidates were also required to complete a written competency based assessment which made up part of the application pack for short-listed candidates.

Remote location:

Whilst the pull of the Lego brand is strong, the role’s location (the remote Danish town of Billund) was likely to demand an individual who could relocate. On this basis, a global search was undertaken with a strong focus on Europe, the UK and the US. Acre’s screening process tested candidates’ ability and motivations to relocate in detail. Ninety candidates were identified as part of Acre’s process. Of these, eight were already based in Denmark.

Interview support:

The Senior Consultant managing the search attended all first interviews along side Lego’s interview panel which included the Global VP of HR. Particularly in light of the blend of internal and external candidates, this created an additional layer of consistency, and prevented any unconscious bias which may have arisen.

Outcome:

The recruitment process ultimately informed LEGO of how they could most effectively approach the hire. Based on intelligence arising from the search, Lego decided that too much weight had been placed on the role, and therefore created two positions – one with an environmental focus and one with a social focus.

The two resulting hires were both global senior sustainability directors with exceptional environmental, stakeholder engagement and sustainability expertise across the corporate, consultancy and NGO sectors.

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