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Let’s make magic happen: When personal purpose and company commitment connect

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Human Resources is the business of enabling people to reach their greatest potential. When a workforce is firing on all cylinders, employees deliver high-quality services, conceptualize innovative solutions to challenges, and commit to advancing their career and industry as a whole. As our communities grapple with how to rebuild from the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the need to support our health workforce in performing to their greatest potential could not be more critical.

At Johnson & Johnson, we’ve always prioritized the well-being of our patients and consumers, employees, communities we live and work in, and of course frontline health workers. This fuels our decision to continuously invest in opportunities for both employees and frontline health workers to grow personally and professionally, empowering them to reach their full potential in order to deliver better healthcare for all. The Johnson & Johnson Talent for Good strategy is a perfect demonstration of how to accomplish all three of those outcomes at once.

I’ve always felt strongly about volunteering as a way to help build stronger communities and make an impact. But often, these volunteer activities left me wanting to do more to drive greater lasting change. My recent experience with Talent for Good was the answer I’d been looking for!

Talent for Good creates opportunities for Johnson & Johnson employees to apply their skills, knowledge and passion to strengthen our local and global partners’ capacity to deliver better care to their communities. In my particular case, I participated in a virtual pro bono HR clinic through EMPACT which matches professionals with a social enterprise company facing new and unique challenges in the wake of COVID-19. When I learned I would have the opportunity to help a company think through their employee recruitment and retention strategies, I jumped at the chance to volunteer not just my time but my HR skills!

I was matched with Infinite Transports, which offers logistics and transport services in Singapore—an important aspect of helping any community recover from the pandemic. The company was founded by Jabez Koh, an ex-offender who employs many former offenders to help them find their footing in life by providing them with a stable job, leadership opportunities and a sense of duty and responsibility.

I was extremely humbled working with Koh. His life story, accomplishments and strong determination to make an impact was remarkable. During our session, I very quickly realized that the learnings and experiences I’ve gained as an HR leader at Johnson & Johnson, could be scaled and applied to reaffirm what they were doing, and also identify new ways to address their needs. Together, we talked about ways to define and articulate Infinite Transports’ employee value proposition, as well as their recruitment and retention plans.

Whether managing HR for a local logistics company, a global healthcare company like Johnson & Johnson, or a health clinic, here are three ways HR can help your workforce reach their full potential:

1. Build trusted and accountable leadership: HR can help ensure the leadership is in place to set the tone as well as support the policies and culture that benefit employees and their communities, and to hold those leaders accountable. When employees believe their leaders care about them, and trust their leaders to continuously invest in their future and wellbeing, it becomes easier to keep a workforce engaged and mobilized during challenges like a pandemic

2. Shape culture: HR has the unique position to establish policies and practices that shape the environment and culture at a workplace. For example, Talent practices that help grow individuals to fulfil their potential, advance diversity and inclusion and community impact; Reward and recognition programs that encourage the deepening of organization values; as well as Benefits and programs for our employees and their families to destigmatize physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health so that they can work towards holistic health and well-being.

3. Design organizations: Good design usually allows employees the space to grow and flourish, which means a more stable future for the employees, their families and their communities. It also helps to build agility for the organization to respond quickly to the ever-changing external environment. We’ve found that this adaptability allows for individuals to have a stronger sense of contribution and personal fulfilment.


Lisa Tay

As I experienced first-hand with my recent engagement, when we create opportunities for employees to fulfil their personal purpose and match it with the company’s purpose, that’s when the magic happens.

Whether you’re an HR professional like me, a scientist or a marketing pro, we all have skills to offer in creating a better world. I strongly recommend all employees seek out opportunities to use their skills to advance the change they want to see in the world. When we mobilize ourselves, we help mobilize our communities to reach their full potential too.

As more employees participate in these kinds of programs, I have no doubt we will create ripples of positive change that will leave a meaningful, enduring impact and profoundly change the trajectory of health for humanity.

About the Johnson & Johnson employee engagement strategy—Talent for Good

The Johnson & Johnson Talent for Good strategy aims to empower the Company’s nearly 140,000 employees from across the globe to grow personally and professionally by applying their time, their skills and their resources to build healthier communities around the world. We are not looking at a specific employee target audience (or pay grade), but aspire and strive to activate all employees within the Company, no matter what level and/or stage they are in their career. From donating to causes dear to them to fully immersive assignments with NGO organizations, we offer opportunities for all employees to play a part in creating positive and meaningful change by sharing and enhancing their skills while pursuing their passions.

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