Home > Podcast > EMEA Recruitment Podcast > 85: EMEA Recruitment Podcast #85 – The Ability to Tolerate Ambiguity – Rahul Kalia

85: EMEA Recruitment Podcast #85 – The Ability to Tolerate Ambiguity – Rahul Kalia

March 8th, 2021

The EMEA Recruitment podcast is proud to welcome Rahul Kalia, the Head of Human Resources, Asia Pacific at Bayer Crop Science.

“If you go with this mindset of curiosity, you start enjoying it. I’m not saying you won’t have anxious moments; you will have. But you’ll enjoy those moments as learning opportunities. You’ll fail fast, but you’ll learn fast and move on.” 

Although it has been a disruptive year for most of us, Rahul feels lucky that his home country of Singapore has controlled the COVID-19 pandemic well, and that his family and colleagues are safe. He speaks to Paul Toms, our Founder, about the ways that the crisis has pushed many of us beyond our limits.

After working in Human Resources (HR) for 20 years, Rahul saw that those able to manage ambiguity could strive during the pandemic. The challenging environment also helped HR functions bring new models into practice, such as remote working. Rahul explains how he believes working from home will fundamentally change the culture of corporate organisations.

He also acknowledges how many businesses didn’t pay much attention to the mental health and wellbeing of their employees prior to the pandemic, but this will be a key factor in the future of work.

With the retention of great staff becoming more challenging, Paul asked Rahul what changes organisations need to make to adapt to the new normal. Rahul explains the three fundamental factors that are essential when employees are working from home. One of those is trust. We explore how to build trust in the workplace and why your workforce is the only thing you can trust in a business.

Looking at whether Business Intelligence (BI) and Data may take the emphasis away from soft skills, Paul and Rahul discuss the responsibility that comes with basing decision-making on the increasing amount of data that organisations have access to. 

Despite our ability to use predictive analytics, Rahul insists that the world is full of uncertainty. He believes that working towards improving your tolerance of ambiguity will help you deal with any situation in your life or career. He draws on his own personal experiences and how difficult moments have taught him key life learnings. 

To find the part of the episode that most interests you, please use the timestamps below:

02:43: How COVID-19 has moved organisations into a dynamic dimension06:10: How working from home can affect mental health08:11: Why adaptability is as important as agility09:40: The fundamental factors needed to retain key talent13:31: How to build trust between employers and employees19:10: What Rahul has learnt through volunteering23:34: How to create a culture of purpose26:12: How BI & Data will affect decision-making29:20: Using predictive analytics to make organisations more productive34:26: The advice Rahul would give to his younger self36:56: Rahul’s key learning in life42:10: How to connect with Rahul


To connect with Rahul, visit his LinkedIn profile here.


We are proud to support a cause close to Paul Toms’ heart, Operation Smile, through the EMEA Recruitment podcast. If you’re able to donate, please help us change a person’s life: https://www.emearecruitment.eu/operation-smile


The EMEA Recruitment podcast is hosted by Paul Toms and Jenny Callum.

You can find out more about us through our website: https://www.emearecruitment.eu/ 

Or via LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/emea-recruitment-limited/ 

If you’d like to connect with Paul, click here.

Or Jenny, here.


If there are any topics you’re interested in hearing more about through the podcast, please let us know via LinkedIn


#emearecruitment #emearecruitmentpodcast #rahulkalia #paultoms #hr #humanresources #singapore #operationsmile

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