Gail Scavetta

This entry is part 47 of 54 in the series

Scavetta_GailGail Scavetta

Stop & Shop, New England Division, Ahold USA
VP of Human Resources/Labor Relations, New England Division

Years with the company:  23 years

Education degrees and professional/volunteer organizations:
Professional training including: Diversity Training, Performance Management, Michigan State HR program, Ahold Retail Academy.  Affiliated with Bottom Line, Boston; Morgan Memorial-Goodwill Industries, Boston; The Partnership, Boston; Year Up, Providence, RI; CT Food Association, member of the Network of Executive Women.

Mentors and how they assisted you in your career:
Navigating the retail industry can be both a complex process as well as exciting.  With the help of great mentors, I have learned to draw from the experiences of others, develop leadership skills and create great networks.  Now that I am a seasoned professional with varied experience, I get to sit on the other side of the mentor relationship and work with young professionals learning the business.  The mentoring relationship for me has been a very rewarding two-way partnership.

What are you most proud of in your career achievements?  Do you have a defining moment of your career to date?
As a woman in retail, I am proud to have grown up in this business.  The relationships built along the way have morphed into life-long friendships.  I’m not sure I have just one defining moment in my career; however, watching the company transition from a 100-plus store chain to an 800+ store chain and top competitor in the industry has been very rewarding.  I’m proud to have been a part of the team that did it.

Most challenging part of your job:
Anyone in retail knows the business is constantly changing and never slows down; reaction time and delivery in our world is critical.  The biggest challenge is balancing the reactive nature of our business with proactive planning to create sustainable solutions that help us to be at the forefront of the industry and support innovation.  Although this is the most challenging part of my job, it’s also the most exciting.  Engaging people with different perspectives, delivering solutions that make the organization stronger and creating a trusted brand that helps move the business forward is highly rewarding.

Advice for upcoming younger executives:
My advice for younger executives is to take the time to learn the core elements of the business, build strong relationships and embrace your passion for the business because that’s what makes the journey fun.

I enjoy spending time with my family, including my eight  grandchildren, antiquing and watching my husband body surfing off Cape Cod.