January 13, 2023

In our Associate Spotlight series, we are highlighting associates across the company who are shaping our community and who embody our Centric Brands philosophy every day.

Meet Tim Headley, Senior Director, Talent and Learning at Centric Brands. In his interview, Tim discusses his focus on developing a learning approach that supports our business strategy, as well as employee training needs. Most recently, Tim played a crucial role in the launch of our LinkedIn Learning platform. With 2023 ahead of us, Linkedln Learning offers more than 17,000 on­-demand courses – including options for engagement, growth and development.

Can you tell us about your role and what it entails?

I joined Centric Brands back in June to lead learning and Development and support Culture and Talent initiatives. In the last few months, I have been focused on understanding our business strategy and colleague learning needs in order to create a plan to offer more opportunities for employees to participate in ongoing growth and development.

Why is learning an important priority for Centric?

Learning is important for a couple of reasons. There is a lot of research showing that learning is a key driver of engagement, which is something employees re-iterated to us directly in last year’s Culture Survey. We all want experiences that allow us to continue growing, regardless of our level or tenure. The other reason involves our ever-evolving business environment. The last few years have seen a significant shift in consumer behavior and expectations, as well as new technologies and the need for new ways of working. The skills needed to be successful continue to change and the ability to learn new skills can offer us a competitive advantage.

LinkedIn Learning is a pivotal piece of this plan as it offers employees an “always open” option to access learning when needed. I think employees will be impressed with the breadth of what linked In learning has to offer, and I am confident that everyone can find something relevant to support their own career growth. Next, we look forward to offering more live sessions for both professional and leadership development.

What is your advice to colleagues looking to make learning a more central part of their day?

It is important to develop a system that works for you and your schedule. Pick a time that works best on a daily or weekly basis and commit. Start small -perhaps it is just 15 minutes a day – and do it consistently. Just like all habits, building learning into our routine helps us follow through. I recommend people think broadly about what it means to learn and how to incorporate different methods. Sometimes it is a training class, but it can also be reading an article, shadowing a peer, listening to a pod cast, attending a webinar, etc. It can also help to take time to reflect on what you learned and share it with others, which deepens our retention and furthers our understanding.

Can you share a recent training or workshop you attended? What did you learn?

I recently attended a coaching certification that had a deep impact on me. It helped me better understand the power of asking great questions, but more importantly, that a great coach is a great listener and doesn’t have their own agenda. This has not only impacted how I coach colleagues, but also how I parent my 10-year-old daughter. It is not always easy – the temptation to give advice can be strong, but the benefit ends up being people solving their own challenges and committing to meaningful change.

What is a fun fact about you or a hobby that you like to do outside of work?

As a family, we are a big fan of the arts, and we make it a priority to take advantage of all New York City has to offer. We spend a lot of time visiting museums, seeing Broadway shows, eating at great restaurants and checking out the latest must-see event. We also love to travel and most recently visited the Amalfi Coast of Italy, which was amazing.