Frontline Innovators

Skill vs Will - Frontline Innovators - Episode # 088

August 12, 2022

Today’s guest has over 20 years of experience with retail L&D and HR. Stephen Vellecca is the Director of Learning and Development at Bloomingdale’s. He sees some of the biggest challenges facing frontline workers in this day and age and wants to make their lives easier. Stephen joins host Justin Lake to talk about how technology adoption can be one of the ways to help them out.



  • Being a frontline worker right now has become more difficult because of how demanding of a society we have become.
  • A lot of retail stores closed during the pandemic because they weren’t able to adapt to some of the changes.
  • Frontline workers don’t have the time and ability to be trained during work hours and then they don’t have the time to be trained during off hours.
  • You want to leverage your team leaders and people in higher positions to inspire frontline workers to accept change.
  • eLearning is a great resource that can help people to learn from an interactive service, but the struggle is finding out how to bring it to life. 
  • The role of the people leader is to be more empathetic and to make sure that the team feels safe and can do their work.
  • Skill vs Will is the ability to do a task but also want to complete the task to its full ability.


Quote of the show

13:55 “My whole platform is always about the people leader and how do we leverage our people leaders to provide the inspiration and the education to the hourly colleague.” 




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