Kristi McFarland, Chief Strategy Officer at New Seasons Market

Kristi McFarland is the Chief Strategy Officer at New Seasons Market, a Pacific Northwest, sustainably-focused, organic grocer with 18 community-oriented stores.

Before joining New Seasons, Kristi led organizational innovation, culture, and brand strategy at Peet’s Coffee & Tea and held HR leadership roles at Gap, Williams-Sonoma, and Banana Republic. In her time at New Seasons, Kristi has overseen rapid growth through talent strategy alignment, leadership development, and culture.

New Seasons has been on the front lines of the Covid 19 pandemic. Kristi and her team are navigating the immediate and long term challenges that come with providing an essential service during this difficult time.

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Highlights from our conversation include

  • How Kristi’s experience as a candidate shaped her approach to hiring (3:42)
  • The importance of a business’s mission as an anchoring point (5:30)
  • How values have come to life in all of Kristi’s roles (7:02)
  • Why customer experience is so important in brand building (11:04)
  • How she and the leadership team at New Seasons empower employees (12:33)
  • How Kristi evaluates internal and external candidates (13:32)
  • How New Seasons has navigated industry changes (17:41)
  • The role culture has played in helping to retain employees (19:04)
  • The employee-friendly practices New Seasons has pioneered (20:10)
  • The challenges they’re facing in the Covid 19 pandemic (21:52)
  • What the future might look like for the grocery industry (28:07)

Visit for transcripts and more on this episode.