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Some of you probably know that my role at Kinetix is primarily focused on recruiting, and at times I help recruit great HR leaders and professionals for Kinetix clients.  I love that part of my job.

I'm going to start sharing the best HR roles that I'm currently recruiting for at Kinetix, because let's face it, there's no better pool of HR leaders out there than the HR pros who seek to stay on top of their game by consuming digital content and engaging in the social conversation that results.  That's you, BTW.

Masonite logoThe next role I'm going to share with you is a great one - I've been retained to help Masonite International find a great HR leader to join its team as a Sr. Director of Human Resources for North America.

I'm going to share it with you two ways:  First, I'm going to trickle info out to people I'm connected with on Twitter and LinkedIn over the next couple of weeks, so follow me or send me a request to connect if we're not already connected.  Then, I'm going to give you a long form position description, complete with my commentary, known as "KD Comments".  I know, you can't wait.  Check it out:


Kinetix and Kris Dunn (HR CapitalistFistful of Talent) are working exclusively with Masonite International to fill the critical role of Senior Director of Human Resources - North America.  This role will be a member of the Masonite HR leadership team, located in balmy Tampa (stay warm, my friends) and reporting directly to Masonite’s SVP of Human Resources, with close interaction with multiple line of business owners within the company.  Compensation and rewards will be competitive/compelling for the right candidate.

Who is Masonite?  Great question and we've got a great answer – Masonite is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of interior doors and entry door systems.  Throughout the company’s 80-year history, Masonite has maintained its focus on leading-edge innovation, manufacturing excellence and superior customer service.

KD’s comments:  Some people say manufacturing is dead in American.  If you think that, then you’ve already self-selected out.  Masonite is proof that the manufacturing game is very much alive in the U.S.  You have to love that as an HR Pro.  But if you don’t, this isn’t for you. 

What’s Masonite looking for in their next Sr. Director of HR for North America? 

A group named the Who once asked (America should have seen this coming), “Who Are You?”

KD’s comments:   Why the classic rock reference?  Other than seeing the classic footage of the bassist half-heartedly singing studio backup while smoking (1:24 in the video, check it out.  He’s also super-chill all the way through the video) and the realization that the drummer has headband-taped his headphones onto his head (3:11), you need to answer that question at 30,000 feet before you raise your hand and say you’re interested. Who are you?  Who do we need you to be? Let’s break it down:

We’re looking for a HR leader with deep experience in running the talent function for a large-scale, multi-site manufacturing environment.   We’ll also talk to HR leaders with heavy employee relations experience in a multi-site environment in different industries.  Is that you?  Keep reading.

But wait – If you fit that profile, but you’re a senior level HR professional with who’s looking for a strategic role where you can think and let other people do, you can stop reading now.  This role is not for you.  The right candidate for this role is going to have the capability to be strategic while always looking for what’s necessary to get things done – and often be the one to do the things in question.

To sum it up – Experience outlined above + brainpower/processor to be strategic + small ego and personal bias wired toward taking action = a great candidate for Masonite.   Is that you?  +1. Keep reading.

Let’s Dig Into the Details, People

Four things we want you to know about this role:

1. The Scope of the Job

Codeword:  Meaty.  There’s a lot here, and it’s not a small job.  Consider:

  • The HR Team:  As a member of the Sr. HR Team at Masonite, you’ll report to an ultra-capable and established SVP of HR.  You’ll also have two upstream peers, one running talent acquisition and one running all back-office functions, including payroll, compensation and benefits.  So you’ve got strong people to hang with and bounce ideas off of.  Which is nice.
  • Your Direct Reports:  You’re the tip of the spear when it comes to executing the people/talent strategy in the field.  You’ll have seven direct reports deployed across North America to help you get it done.  We hear they’re good.
  • The Facilities You’ll Be Responsible For:  24 of them, including locations in Canada and Mexico.  A big enough sandbox to have a lot of fun and not run out of challenges - ever.  We’ll validate your I-9 when you join the company with your passport due to the travel.  Wait, we can’t tell you what to provide.  Of course, you knew that. Just know there’s a good bit of travel involved.
  • The Business Partners at the Home Office Who Need You To Be Great: In addition to interacting with your field HR team and the operations leaders at each of the facilities, you’ll have access to four Operations leaders at HQ who are looking to you to be their peer.  Not someone handling transactions, their peer.  Making bad stuff go away and good stuff that’s not expected be developed and implemented daily.

KD’s comments: We just took any concerns you had about the scope of the role off the table.  It’s the real deal, with enough complexity to keep you challenged for the long term and some great people we’ve already met to keep it fun. 

2. What’s In It For You, What You’ll Be Doing in this Role and as a Result, What You Need to be Good At

This is where most marketing documents for open positions show a long list of things they want the right candidate to have.  We’re going to give you six things you need to bring to table, how you’ll use them and how you’ll grow as a result.  Here’s what we need you to have:

  • Strong Employee Relations chops.  As you might expect with 24 facilities, there’s always a need for a steady hand when it comes to all things employee relations-driven.  We need you to be able to handle the scope and volume of employee-relations issues this type of scale drives, and do it in a way that limits risk but is still viewed people-oriented.
  • Deep Labor Relations Experience and Expertise.   A few of the facilities are organized, so we need you to be fluent in labor relations, contract negotiation, dispute resolution in an organized environment, etc.
  • Experience managing, overseeing and mentoring a large HR staff in a manufacturing environment.  In this role, you’ll have 7 direct and 20+ indirect reports helping you get things done in the field.  That means we have a huge need for the hire we make to have great experience coaching, mentoring and growing the HR pros that report to them in a progressive type of way.  Do you have experience making HR Managers and Directors better professionally and ready to take on more responsibility?  If so, you might be the right hire.
  • Labor Law Expertise at the Local, Process-Driven Level.  We’ve got plants.  There’s a lot of labor law that’s related to that.  We need you to be the expert in this area, but in a local, process-driven way that allows us to be in 100% compliance while driving the time spent by your HR team and the plants you serve in this area to the lowest amount possible.  Doing that gives everyone more time to spend on revenue-generating activities.
  • Strong HR Generalist Background Allowing You to Develop and Deploy Programs as Needed.   Employee Relations will always be at the top of the list for this job, but we need you to have a strong generalist background in HR Leadership, with the knowledge and demonstrated capability to sense what’s needed, develop programs as necessary (with and without the help of your peers in Talent Acquisition and Comp/Benefits) and execute those programs for business results.  Performance Management?  Leadership Development?  Managerial training at the plant level?  Yes, please.  And more.
  • Specific Understand of Recruiting Best Practices and Execution in a Manufacturing Environment. Good news – you’ve got a peer as part of the HR Leadership team who is an expert in Talent Acquisition.  That’s a great reason to take this job, but we’ll still need you to be an expert in what it takes to go into a specific geographical area surrounding a plant and help develop and execute a plan allowing Masonite to get the local talent it needs to reach its production goals.  We’ve got 24 plants.  That means there are 24 different formulas you’ve got to figure out since each plant is unique related to the talent market in which it resides.
  • Experience in Making Managers of People at the Plant Level Not Need You (as Much).Let’s face it – your Employee Relations platform is only as good as the managers/supervisors you have in the plants.  With that in mind, we’re looking for a partner who can craft a short/intermediate/long-term plan designed to make our “managers of people” better.  We know you’re probably great at putting out fires.  We want you to show us how to prevent them through building better managers and supervisors.

KD’s comments:   I know. Just six things listed we need you to be good at, but they cover a lot of real estate, don’t they?  What’s in it for you if join the team?  Unlimited opportunity to lead and build what you’ve always wanted to build related to a field-focused HR practice.  Read on.

3. Who You Have to Influence on the Business Side

As we mentioned earlier, who you have to influence on the business side of the operation is pretty simple.  You’ve got the operations leaders at each of the facilities and you’ll have four Operations leaders at HQ who oversee that group that are looking to you to be their peer.

KD’s comments: The most important thing here?  Like most operators, these folks don’t want someone in HR to dictate from a policy manual.  That’s necessary at times, but what they really want is someone who can help them figure talent-related issues out. Not someone handling transactions, their peer.  Making bad stuff go away and good stuff that’s not expected be developed and implemented daily.  We’ll be digging into your approach related to how you do this in the interview process.

4. Who You Have to Coach, Grow and Mentor on the HR Side

Last but certainly not least, we want you to know that there’s a need for the hire we make to have great experience coaching, mentoring and growing the HR pros that report to them in a progressive type of way.  Do you have experience making HR Managers and Directors better professionally and ready to take on more responsibility?  If so, you might be the right hire.

KD’s comments:  It’s a great role.  I think the right candidate could come from a couple of different places, most likely a company with a large scale manufacturing base and great human capital strategy who feels like things have gotten just a bit too bureaucratic over the last couple of years, or an up and comer who’s built similar infrastructure and wants to do it again in an even bigger environment.

Legal Said I Had To Break Out Some Qualifications and Requirements In a Bulleted Fashion: (plus some of you need this, so here you go)

  • Bachelor’s degree in Human Resources, Business, or related field required; Master’s Degree in HR, OD preferred
  • 20 + years HR experience including 8-10 years of management and senior leadership experience
  • Significant experience in a manufacturing environment
  • SPHR / PHR certification is a plus
  • Must have experience in a union environment negotiating labor contracts
  • Experience as a strategic HR business partner developing HR strategy in conjunction with senior leadership. Ability to move from the strategic to the tactical seamlessly.
  • Strong executive presence and presentation skills
  • Ability to collaborate and work with all levels in the organization
  • Excellent communication skills (written and verbal), strong interpersonal skills, time management skills, and team-building skills are essential for success
  • Training, facilitation, coaching, and leadership skills
  • Proficient in the use of Microsoft applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.)
  • Ability to handle multiple priorities, a high level of initiative, strong problem-solving skills and good judgment.

Submittals for this opportunity are being handled by Kris Dunn. Please apply here and Kris will have direct access to your resume. Be sure to ask him for a packet of company information and intelligence that you can use to separate yourself from the pack in this search.  If that sounds like too much work, you’re probably not right for the role.  However, if you’ve made it this far and are energized by the opportunity, hit us with your resume and ping Kris on Twitter.




Hey Kris, If you ever source anything even remotely close to this description near Kirksville, MO (My hometown, and you are one of the few people that would actually know where that is) please keep me in mind.

D. Hettinger

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