Sheena Blauvelt, SHRM-SCP, started working in HR when she was in high school. Today, she’s executive director of HR specialties at USANA, a global direct selling company with U.S. offices based in Salt Lake City.
Blauvelt’s career path in the profession can be traced back to middle school, when she took an aptitude test that identified HR as a good career fit for her. Then, in 11th grade, her life changed forever when she became pregnant and gave birth to her daughter. “A switch flipped in my mind, and I knew I had a responsibility to provide for another life I had created,” she says.
Later that year, she landed an HR internship with the federal government in Idaho Falls, Idaho, where she got a firsthand look at what HR professionals do.
She continued to work for the agency while finishing high school and during her first years of college. “I fell in love with helping people,” Blauvelt says.
She earned her B.A. from Ashford University (now known as the University of Arizona Global Campus) and then an MBA from Boise State. Blauvelt is active in the Society for Human Resource Management’s Salt Lake City chapter, for which she is a board member and past president. At USANA, Blauvelt oversees talent acquisition, total rewards, and organizational and employee development.
What’s your work philosophy?
Use your resources! This is actually my philosophy at home and at work—my kids are probably sick of hearing it. Alexa keeps my shopping list. My days are organized with my Outlook calendar. I can connect with anyone in an instant using e-mail, text, cellphone or webchats, and the World Wide Web is full of so much information in an instant.
What are you passionate about?
I’m most passionate about helping people find success in their careers. I believe every person has the ability to be successful regardless of their circumstances. Everything HR does ties to the success and engagement of employees.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
Author Nora Roberts said when you’re juggling a lot of balls, remember that some are glass and some are rubber, and you can’t drop the glass balls. While I prefer not to drop any balls, I have had to learn which balls I can drop and which I cannot drop. Time with my family and following through on commitments are glass balls I cannot drop.
Photograph by Jake Campos for HR Magazine.