Mattel’s India HR head Rajesh Hurkat gets addition role for South East Asia


In the last one year since Hurkat joined Mattel India, he has helped the company improve on its employee value proposition. 

Rajesh Hurkat admits to exciting times ahead as he takes on a new role to head HR for Mattel South-East Asia. The former India HR head of the toy company will now take on additional responsibility as he leads the discipline for a much larger market.

The responsibility gets a lot more exciting as we are talking multiple markets now. South-East Asia consists of multiple countries, such as Malaysia and Indonesia that are critical markets for Mattel.

I see this as a great opportunity as we look to replicate our HR best practices to a broader audience with the combined markets,” Hurkat tells HR Katha.

Having joined Mattel India only a year back in May 2017, as head-HR, Hurkat has already been a part of a journey that has seen Mattel evolve as a workplace and has also won a few awards.

“The employer branding journey at Mattel India is being appreciated widely within Mattel. It has been a great learning experience as we achieved these milestones through tremendous partnership amongst the larger team”, he says.

One of the key objectives before him when he joined the organisation was to showcase Mattel India and its Employee Value Proposition (EVP) to the world at large, instil a sense of pride in employees, make them advocate their experiences to the professional community and create deeper in-roads into campuses and the millennial segment, to power the planned growth of Mattel In India.

“In the past year, we have been able to showcase the WONDER culture at Mattel India, which has helped us to engage better with candidates as we onboard them for the growth journey ahead,” says Hurkat.

The Company has been able to leverage employer branding to attract the right talent in India, and this is an ideal opportunity for Hurkat and his team to apply these practices to advantage in South-East Asia. This will be led by the ‘WONDER’ values of the Company.

He explains how WONDER represents the various values – What if and why not, One team, Nimble, Driven, Entrepreneurship and Respect.

According to him, what has helped in his Mattel India journey is his ability to understand the organisational growth journey and building the culture and ecosystem that inspire employees; something that he has learnt working in other MNCs across sectors in the last 14 years.

Hurkat began his career in 2004 and has worked with companies such as Vodafone India, LafargeHolcim, Aditya Birla and Mondelez International before joining Mattel.

An alumnus of Symbiosis Institute of Business Management, he recalls fondly how he led the design and creation of a high-performance work culture for what is claimed to be the biggest chocolate factory in the world and largest in Asia Pacific, for Mondelez at Sri City in Andhra Pradesh.

“People are at the heart of any organisation. With HR, one gets an opportunity to be the enabler to help the organisation win in the market.” he says.

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Prajjal Saha is the editor and publisher of HRKatha, which he founded in 2015. With nearly 25 years of experience in business journalism, writing, and editing, he is a true industry veteran who possesses a deep understanding of all facets of business, from marketing and distribution to technology and human resources. Along with his work at HRKatha, he is also the author of the Marketing White Book. Thanks to his extensive experience and expertise, he has become a trusted source of insight and analysis for professionals across a wide range of industries.