Governing Body Spotlight

Governing Body Member of the UK & Ireland CHRO Community

Ben Bengougam



Ben Bengougam leads a talented team of HR executives that service a business in the EMEA region, employing 70,000 team members in over 600 hotels in 69 countries. Ben anticipates the company to grow by 50% over the coming 5 years.

Learn more about the UK & Ireland CHRO community here.

Give us a brief overview of the path that led to your current role.

I studied Engineering at Oxford Brookes University, during which time I complimented my meagre bursary with jobs in restaurants and hotels. I fell in love with the industry and developed my career to become a General Manager of a hotel. I moved into a training role, by accident, 34 years ago and within 3 years became the Human Resources Director of our business in Italy.

Subsequently, I became CHRO of a tech business in the US before joining the Dixons Group as Head of HR Europe and then as Group Human Resources Director. Next, I joined Hilton in 2010 as Vice President of HR Europe and later became Senior Vice President of HR EMEA.

I have the best job in the best company ever – it is truly a privilege to work for Hilton.

What is one of your guiding leadership principles?

Remain humble. Connect and lead with kindness and empathy. Behave with integrity, transparency and fairness. Link everything we do to business outcomes.

With disruption being a key theme of the past few years, where do you see your role as a CHRO going in the next 1-2 years?

Disruption is all around us and needs to be embraced to achieve success in an ever more dynamic and fluid environment. At Hilton, we apply this to how we develop our business, our digital capabilities, and our people strategies and plans. We are always seeking uniqueness in a world of sameness to achieve excellence in the service we deliver to our customers, our stakeholders, our team members and the communities which we serve.

What advice would you give to someone just starting out in the role as a CHRO?

Never waiver in your beliefs and values. Never shirk a challenge to influence. Always express your views respectfully and tactfully but with confidence and belief. Having your data and analytics support you is always helpful, too.

Tell us 3 fun facts about yourself.

  1. I was born in France to a French mother and an Algerian father, but consider myself British these days. I am reasonably fluent in five languages.
  2. I have 3 children, 4 stepchildren and 2 little grandsons whom I adore.
  3. For my sins, I am a Tottenham Hotspur fan.

What is the value of joining an Evanta community?

Evanta provides a safe and inspiring environment to share, listen and learn from extraordinarily talented colleagues in different industries, all managed in a very professional and positive way by the Evanta team.

Evanta Governing Body members share their insights and leadership perspectives to shape the agendas and topics that address the top priorities impacting business leaders today.

by CHROs, for CHROs

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