Q&A with Talent Lab’s Tess Sloane

Alissa Bakker

BSP CEO Izzie Egan met Tess Sloane at lululemon, and was blown away by her skills as a support functions recruiter. Tess can source and woo hard like no one else, and her innate understanding of her business partners needs is second to none. On top of being an exceptionally natural recruiter, Tess is a hoot! She has the largest heart and deepest love for her friends and family—that’s her son Jack in the photo! Since leaving lululemon, Tess has gone on to lead the talent function for Earl’s. She also (along with her best friend Alisha Adams) built Talent Lab, a fantastic and well-respected forum for recruiters to share their experiences and knowledge (and drink prosecco!). We’re so pleased Tess took some time to chat with us.

Tell us about Talent Lab!

Talent Lab was created with purpose by myself and Alisha Adams in 2015 as a speaker series intended to spread wisdom and education about talent acquisition, but more importantly, to establish our city as a hub for global talent which ultimately benefits us all. We are passionate about disrupting and elevating the talent acquisition profession in Vancouver and beyond. We are coming up to our fourth sold-out conference on May 4!

Why do you think Talent Lab has been a success?

In the talent acquisition community (which is usually benchmarked by competition) we saw a huge need to come together to create something larger. Regardless of what you do, humans have the innate desire to connect and build community. Talent Lab provides the platform for that to happen, and the space for inspiration and innovation to occur.

Tell us about your role at Earl’s. What does a regular day look for you?

I lead the People and Development team here at Earls. We support our stores and operators on all things talent, recruitment, leadership development, training and performance. My main focus right now is our People Strategy for the next 3 years. Right now I am spending as much time in our Canadian and US stores learning from our operators and supporting our US expansion. A regular day at Earls is great food, great people and lots of laughs! The Restaurant industry is highly complex business—I am learning so much from the team here, and my love of Earl’s is only growing.

How do you encourage community among Vancouver Recruiters competing for talent in such a small pool?

We showcase and give the stage to a diverse range of Recruiters. We believe there’s just as much to learn from from a seasoned recruiter of 20+ years, as there is from a new up-and-coming recruiter of 1-2 years that’s doing something new and disruptive. It’s not about having everyone love and agree with each speaker. We hope to challenge, push, and get you uncomfortable so you question your techniques. That’s when growth occurs, and the future is created.

Have you had any pushback to Talent Lab?

Not yet! We are very clear with the purpose and intention of Talent Lab, so people can opt in or opt out. Our last conference sold out, with over 50 people on the wait list! It’s clear the talent acquisition community has an appetite for this for this type of collaboration.

If you’re an HR professional with a story to tell, drop us a line—we’d love to feature you on The Slate.

Keep Reading

Here are some more posts we thought you'd like