Sabrina Ricardo: "2024 will be a year of training and development"

Talento Y Empresa
3
min
February 12, 2024
 Sabrina Ricardo: "2024 will be a year of training and development"

The Head of People & Culture at Kids Corp, discusses the company's initiatives in the face of regional challenges and internal transformations, to achieve its growth and global leadership objectives.

Kids Corp is a company of 70 people expecting to grow to 110 by the end of 2024, with operations in Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil, Mexico, and opening offices in the United States. The regionalization objective for this year presents special challenges to the area led by Sabrina Ricardo, coupled with a transformation from being a service company to one focused on technology-linked products.

Talent & Company: What does this change in the company's positioning consist of?

Sabrina Ricardo: It's a project that started two years ago and began to materialize in 2023, deepening in 2024. Kids Corp focuses on the under-18 segment and has a lot of know-how in media management for this segment, which is difficult to handle because, due to international regulations, cookies are not allowed. Therefore, there is no way to track the behaviors and platform usage by children. What we used to do was run campaigns for our B2B clients, and currently, we have become a technology company, launching a new product into the market. With this product, B2B companies, like agencies, can self-manage to not only target and segment but now also have the technology to run their own campaigns. We are integrated with over 100,000 YouTube channels, over 80,000 compliant applications, and 150 metaverse billboard experiences. It's an invention in the global market that combines technology and all the data we have about how the under-18 segment behaves. We obtain this information from market research, not from cookies. We are a very niche company, with expert knowledge in what we do.

Talent & Company: How did this transformation impact the required capabilities and team composition?

Sabrina Ricardo: We have a great challenge in People & Culture to ensure that the teams are up to this path, whether it's technical knowledge or soft skills. That's why our focus in 2024 is on accompanying the development of the teams and training them, especially with the expansion to the United States. In that country, there is a more results-oriented way of working, very efficient, and we also have the challenge of bringing our way of working to a more performance-oriented profile, with operational excellence. On the other hand, our main skills are related to the digital media market, but we also have expertise in different industries: entertainment, toy manufacturing, and consumer goods, which are our three verticals of work. This means we complement both knowledge areas. All this makes People & Culture a strategic area within the company.

Talent & Company: Do you find the talents you need?

Sabrina Ricardo: Yes, what Kids Corp has is a strong focus on human talent. It has a different purpose, which is to make the internet platform, digital media, a safe ecosystem for under-18s. So, this purpose, plus the employee value proposition, plus the possibility of global growth, makes us very attractive. I've been with the company for seven months, and my goal is for the People & Culture proposal to meet these new challenges, providing support to the people. We have a very tempting global proposition; we have an 80% chance of becoming the global number one in what we do because we are a technology company in a very specific segment.

Talent & Company: Regarding the purpose, is there any cultural work for employees to actively participate in it?

Sabrina Ricardo: When I joined the company, the strongest thing it had was its culture. It's a very collaborative and expert team. One of our values is to be unique, so the unique skills that employees have are very much encouraged, highlighted, and there's a lot of opportunity for everyone to be a protagonist within the company. It's a combination: it's not just about the purpose of having a safe ecosystem but also the opportunities to stand out, to be heard, to have flexibility, autonomy to propose and execute. It doesn't matter what level one has within the company: this expertise, innovation, entrepreneurship, which are our values, are experienced in the organizational culture.

Talent & Company: How is this implemented?

Sabrina Ricardo: For example, what we did in 2023 was to redefine the organizational structure, making it simple, collaborative, and customer-focused. For this, each role within the company had to be defined, its impact on the business, and understanding its differentiation and specificity. We have a matrix crossed by three variables: expertise in each of the three industries we work in, the markets each one serves, and the type of operation each does. There was a definition of levels from trainee to C-level. All this, taking feedback on what needed improvement within the company. For 2024, we are redefining our meetings, ceremonies, what will be done in each meeting, how often we meet, and what the objective is. Participation and satisfaction in each meeting will be encouraged and measured. Another of our cultural milestones is the Offsite, which is a three-day annual meeting with representatives from all countries. All annual objectives are reviewed there, and we use the space for creation, co-creation, innovation activities, and also for getting to know each other beyond work. It's about being experts and unique.

Talent & Company: Regarding benefits, what is most appreciated?

Sabrina Ricardo: Our average age is 33, and excluding the management team, it's 27. It's a young segment, with roughly a 50-50 split between women and men, and the reality is that benefit preferences depend a lot on individual interests. We like to have flexibility in benefits; we have a platform where everyone charts their own journey through "kids coins," company coins they receive monthly and can use to choose discounts at supermarkets, a voucher for a manicure or haircut, paying for a gym membership if they want. At the same time, this helps us measure preferences and track which benefits are most used. We also strongly encourage language training. Until two months ago, English and Portuguese, and Spanish for Brazilians, were a benefit; now it's necessary training for everyone to be up to the challenge of reaching the United States, so the whole company is taking English classes, very business-oriented, in groups of up to three people. 2024 will be a year of training and development. We are implementing people development management, implementing OKRs (objective key results) so everyone knows their objectives and can track if they are achieving them, providing them with the necessary tools.

Talent & Company: Do you have any leadership promotion projects?

Sabrina Ricardo: We plan to provide leadership training for those leaders who are incipient, initial, or those who have the potential to become leaders. To identify them, in March, we will be implementing the PDA psychometric test so they can understand what type of profile they have, cross it with job descriptions, and understand how to address that gap, if any. There we will identify key people, key positions, and in the second quarter of the year, we will address a leadership training plan, very focused on soft skills, team management, time management, feedback management. For the management team, we are focusing on storytelling to be able to tell and sell what we do and have a presentation in line with expectations.

Talento & Empresa: In your experience as an employee, what things are you interested in not neglecting in your current role?

Sabrina Ricardo: In my experience as an employee, one thing I'm interested in not neglecting in my current role is being close to people. I think it's essential to provide support. I don't like micro-management, telling people what to do, but rather giving them opportunities, helping them identify what they want to achieve and how, both for leaders themselves and for their teams. My role is about support and providing the tools for that. In listening and being close to people, which is what I like about working with a small team, I see the possibility of enhancing knowing who each person is, what their interests are, and what areas they can improve on. I find it very enriching.

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