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DST Newsroom

“The Making of the Super CHRO”

23 th Nov 2017

DST Director of Corporate Services Philip Wilson examines the qualities of a ‘ super ‘ CHRO.

What critical elements define a ‘super’ Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO)?  And, what role does the CHRO play in shaping culture and aligning teams?  You might not expect to find answers to these questions highlighted by a consulting engineering firm but our expert talent goes beyond environmental professionals and engineers.  One of the key strengths of DST’s Senior Leadership Team can be found in the diverse competencies of it’s directors, which happens to include a super CHRO in Director of Corporate Services, Philip Wilson.

In a recently published article “The Making of the Super CHRO” written in collaboration with Stratx Inc. CEO Bill Greenhalgh for Queens University IRC, Wilson unpacks the qualities and characteristics that take a CHRO from good to great.  Building upon the idea that the success of a CHRO hinges on possessing five crucial competencies this article places the first, Strategic Business Planning and HR Alignment, under a microscope.[1]

Going well beyond a high-up account of principles and concepts, Wilson and Greenhalgh provide concrete examples of the vital role CHRO’s are playing as part of senior management teams.  They have been given a coveted seat in the ‘C Suite’, as Wilson alludes, and are bringing both fundamental HR skills and strategic business planning expertise to the table.

This article is the first of what will hopefully become a five-part series for Wilson and Greenhalgh, with each piece taking an in-depth look at one of the five requisite knowledge competencies of a high-performing CHRO.  The main takeaway of this article is clear, that the traditional role of the CHRO is evolving and with it, so too are the internal dynamics of leadership teams.  By working to help fully align management and establish a corporate culture that breeds employee engagement, the ‘super’ CHRO is now, more than ever, connected to business success.

Wilson closes by asking readers “which CHRO super hero do you want to be?” And, from our perspective at least, we think Philip Wilson is the obvious choice.


This article gives more detail on item 1 above – Strategic Business Planning and HR Alignment. The intent is to provide the reader with a deeper insight and focus on the strategic business planning process and how CHRO’s can help align HR with the overall strategic business priorities of the firm. That activity must include consideration of areas such as board governance, corporate vision, mission, values, logic modelling and how the strategy is executed. Bill Greenhalgh, currently President and Chief Executive Officer Stratx Inc., provides insights from a CEO’s perspective.

*Philip Wilson, CHRL, CHRE, is an acting member of DST’s Senior Leadership Team.

[1] The other competencies identified in Aligning HR Strategies to Create Business Success are: Talent Acquisition Allocation and Management, People Management, Compensation, Rewards and Recognition, and Employee and Leadership Professional Development.

About DST Consulting Engineers

DST is a nation-wide, employee owned company with over 40 years of experience. Our ‘product’ is our knowledge, our greatest asset is our brain power, and our business is providing a range of comprehensive, results-driven services to meet the special demands of our clients.