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Meet Shanzi Mahmood, People Partner

Meet the people working at Pleo

Here at Pleo, we take pride in our unique hiring process, in the team we built and the people we are working with. If it wasn’t for each and every one of them, Pleo wouldn’t be the same. Their stories and visions tell a lot about what makes Pleo such a special place and  a great company to work for.

We’re putting some of these people in the spotlight, so they can tell you, in their own words, what working at Pleo is all about.

Meet our German team 🇩🇪

Our Berlin office gang is truly one of a kind… they are ambitious and never miss  out on the  chance to have some fun – or dance. We’ve seen some pretty special dance moves going down in the office. 🧐 😜

In general, they are a pretty relaxed bunch of people… as you can tell from their choice of shoes in the picture above.

Last time, we introduced you to our beloved Olga, Customer Success Associate in Germany. If you missed it, have a look here.

Today you will get to know Shanzi, our East Coast gal who loves travelling the world and thankfully for us, now calls Berlin her home.

Here we go …

Let’s meet Shanzi, People Partner

Shanzi, what do you do at Pleo?

I'm a People Partner for our Marketing & Finance orgs! This means that I help our team achieve growth through happy humans in high performing teams. The less fluffy version of that means that I:

  • make sure our "People Projects" have an impact on all Marketing & Finance team members
  • review our Culture Amp results and use them to drive specific quarterly initiatives or areas of improvement
  • am a sparring partner for everything related to People (and other things too!)
  • help build career progression maps and partner with individuals to realize their career goals
  • coach others on the things I know best (project & stakeholder management, leadership development, succession planning)
  • proactively put forward, run and delegate projects that will make Pleo more efficient

What were you doing before?

I was working on business development, global mobility, and talent management at an American e-commerce home goods company. 

Why did you join Pleo?

I wanted a change in both culture and industry. Culturally, I was looking for a company where employees felt like they weren't just a cog in a machine; where if you looked like you were having a bad day or have a big event coming up, your colleagues would also be invested in how you're doing. Industry-wise, I have always been interested in tech but haven't been able to sink my teeth into it function-wise at my last company. Although my domain remains largely the same, Pleo's cross functionality (and size) lets me easily learn from teams I'm not a part of and also lets me stay engaged in what's happening in the industry. It's also exciting to come into work every day knowing that I can make a big difference on my team. 

What’s surprised you most about working here?

Hands down – the culture.

I’m a sucker for management & business books; some of my favourites are No Rules Rules, Radical Candor, and It Doesn't Have to Be Crazy at Work. These books all advocate for a more “human” workplace – a place where people don’t wear long hours as a badge of honour, but rather recognize that strong relationships, passion for your job, and a trusting environment are the building blocks of any successful company. While it’s one thing to value these things, it’s another to live them. 

During my first few months at Pleo, I was amazed at how strongly Pleo lives its values (being human, trust, transparency, & entrepreneurship). People are honest, open-minded, willing to respectfully challenge each other regardless of title and position, and most importantly, care for one another! 

Coming from a more corporate background, this culture isn't something I take for granted. As a People Partner, I can see first-hand how being valued and trusted motivates people to put their best foot forward.

Want to learn more about our Berlin office and the Pleo team driving forward-think initiatives in Germany? Keep an eye on our Berlin team here on the blog.

Want to know more about Shanzi? Connect with her on LinkedIn.

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