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When Tiffany Helley was recruited in 2015 to lead HR at The Douglas Stewart Co., a distributor of products ranging from mobile learning solutions to office supplies in Madison, Wis., she was eager to make her mark. So she revamped the entire function, implementing metrics, accountability and a new performance management process for the company’s 100 employees.
"To me, employees are everything," says Helley, 29. "They are the basis of our business and, if we treat them well and support them fully, it makes our company better."
Throughout her eight years in HR, she has quickly made her way up the ranks. She currently serves as HR director and a member of Douglas Stewart’s senior leadership team.
"According to the COO, she has impacted this company more than any other hire over the last few years," says co-worker Janet Ninneman.
A prime example is the performance review process Helley introduced. "Now, employees talk to their manager about their work plan, at a minimum, every quarter, so they know where they stand and what they can do better," Helley says.
In addition to fulfilling her HR duties, Helley has held director positions on three boards and co-founded a nonprofit animal rescue, all while raising a family and going to school. She plans to graduate in 2017 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration.
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