Adedayo Adeniyi

Director of Leadership and
Organizational Development

Every Purdue employee deserves a great leader.

That's Adedayo Adeniyi's philosophy. As director of leadership and organizational development in Human Resources, Adeniyi strives to ensure that the University's 2,700 managers have the tools they need to succeed, including published resources, management training and job performance feedback.

Adedayo Adeniyi

What are some examples of leadership and organizational development tools you're working on now?

Something we're going to provide soon is 360-degree management reviews and succession planning tools. The reviews are all about allowing managers to get feedback from their supervisor, staff, peers and stakeholders to help understand the impact of the manager's leadership. The 360 tool is strictly developmental and intended to support the growth and upward mobility of our supervisors and managers. Succession planning is all about helping organizations identify the positions and the skills that Purdue will require in the future, and then helping leaders develop a plan to ensure that internal employees are capable of competing for these mission-critical positions as they become open.

Both of these offerings will appear on our leadership and organizational development website — at www.purdue.edu/hr/lod — by October. The 360-degree feedback tool will be fully automated; once the feedback is collected, we'll assign each manager a coach to help interpret that feedback and develop a plan of action. With the succession planning, we'll have online materials to help with initial planning; we then plan to hold workshops in October and November to help areas better understand what is necessary as far as succession planning. We'll also offer internal and external consultants for areas that want to build succession plans. HR is proud to be a committed partner in the development of our supervisors and manager.

What are your day-to-day duties?

On a daily basis, I work with a team of very accomplished HR professionals and their stakeholders to develop leadership and managerial training, staff evaluation tools and change management projects to help Purdue undergo strategic changes. We develop tools to address operational and strategic issues — we try to close those gaps to help areas become more effective and efficient. We also try to help employees reach a higher level of achievement.

One way we're trying to do that that involves annual performance reviews and employees' career development plans, which are required now according to University policy. This academic year, we're working with areas and departments to make sure these reviews happen and those plans are explored. We want it to be a very positive, productive experience for all involved.

What's your professional background at Purdue?

I joined Purdue in January 2005 as assistant director of Human Resources training and development. After a year, I joined the OnePurdue project as director of change management, training and communications. I later returned to Human Resources to lead the HR training development function, and I also took on employee relations. When Vice President for Human Resources Luis Lewin came aboard in 2010, I moved into my current role.

I've been in human resources for most of my career, and I've found that I really enjoy the science of endeavors such as process improvement. I really love supporting people as they develop and grow professionally and helping organizations change and improve. It's very rewarding to lead the University in initiatives that help develop leaders and top talent.

What's the most challenging aspect of your job?

Probably the most challenging aspect is the fact that Purdue is large, meaning that there's a lot to do when it comes to leadership and organizational development. We consider our audience to be all of Purdue's supervisors, managers and leaders — that encompasses about 2,700 people across all campuses. The challenge is finding the right place to start and to do so in a way that will have a lasting impact. We also want to make sure that we use our time and resources wisely, since we are such a small team.

What do you consider your professional passion?

I truly believe that every employee deserves a great leader. Leadership is what makes the difference in any work environment. I'm passionate about helping leaders -- and our whole workforce -- develop and reach their full potential. Purdue's workforce is what makes us who we are, so to be part of helping develop that workforce is a privilege.