Lessons from the Line: Teamwork and Growth Opportunities Lead to Engagement and Retention

April 12, 2022 Brad Perkins

Recruiting challenges and supply chain issues have dominated the headlines over the past couple of years. Often overlooked in those discussions is the importance of retention. Retention helps both ensure employee engagement and helps recruiting by showing the possibilities within a company. Keeping employees engaged and giving them opportunities to learn new skills, collaborate across teams and build a career leads not just to employee satisfaction, but to growth and opportunity. The teamwork and camaraderie they develop while working together and learning from each other leads to growth. So how do teams do it?

“At our Ohio site, we cross train, where we continue to carry out the culture of training the backup for the backup, which gives people the opportunity to step up and add experience to their resumes,” said Johnny Martinez, SIMOS Solutions regional general manager.

Read how one team embraces knowledge sharing, job sharing and teamwork to grow both personally and professionally while delivering for the customer:

Evan Kirch, Operations Manager

I have developed tremendously in my ability to deal with differing personalities and how to conduct myself as a leader that people are receptive to. I have had the opportunity to fail and learn from my mistakes, and I now have the confidence to handle professional problems head on and not get discouraged. I love my onsite team and the others that I work within the organization. It has always been a positive work environment and makes coming to work and finding motivation a lot easier.

Lal Bhattarai, Performance Supervisor

I’m motivated by learning new things and coming up with creative ideas. My role has led to better communication, maintaining 100% production and building stronger leaderships with positive attitudes. I’ve learned many things with SIMOS, including communication and problem solving.

Sarah Jarrett, Performance Improvement Manager

When I started, I was getting the product inside the building so it could be shipped to the store. Next it was motivating my team members to reach their daily performance goals, then I was providing HR support to my team and operations manager. I now work with each different client within their building to develop and implement a plan that increases performance from each of our team members working at that site. The challenges that I have faced have kept me growing each day and the excitement of watching our company grow is what has kept me working for SIMOS.

David Stoever, Payroll Admin/ Lead

I started as packer for peak season. After peak season, I was promoted to trainer, lead and lots of different jobs at the site. Sometimes I fill in for the supervisor at other job sites. Currently I’m doing payroll and onboarding activities. I’m also trained in Hazmat Safety. I always thought I was good at being the lead on second shift and keeping employee morale up. I’m good at dealing with people. SIMOS gave me the opportunity to use skills that I developed through college and life experiences and use them in a real life work environment. I appreciate the ability to learn new things and add things to my resume.

Tammi Dysart, Performance Supervisor

I love the fact that people rely on me to ensure they are safe and working hard. I love being in front of a group and being the leader. I like setting the example for my family, peers and subordinates. Working with SIMOS has fine tuned my leadership skills, communication skills and overall ability to work in adverse environments. I love my job and I look forward to working for SIMOS the next 40 years.

Pamala Gilliam, DTC Senior Supervisor

I am most proud of my personal impact on the business. We have a lot of repeat business as it relates to staffing and I am proud when we get a re-hire and they are happy that I am still here, or their friend or family comes and a previous packer asks about me. I am motivated by the daily challenges in the DTC department. It would seem that it would be the same thing every day, but truly it is quite the contrary. From Daily Plan to staffing to equipment malfunctions, it is rewarding when you are able to master these things and follow SOP, meet SLA and leave here in one piece without any safety issues.

Bisham Chhetri, Performance Supervisor

I love knowing there is a customer out there that really needs clothing. I have so much experience because I have been here so long. I have been hourly and now I am a leader among my peers. I ask for guidance and I give it to them. I have proven myself as a worthy supervisor because I say what I mean and mean what I say. I understand operations very well, I am good with numbers and SIMOS continues to provide the ability to work with numbers.

Josephine Reyes, Site Admin

I choose to stay with SIMOS because I quickly realized that if you do your best the opportunity will come. I think it is a great company to grow with. Along with the opportunity, the people have been very welcoming. When Sarah asked me if I was interested in learning and becoming her backup although I had no previous experience, she was able to teach me everything I needed to know in a short period of time. She then started a new role, and I was able to step up as Admin. Working with SIMOS has allowed me to expand my knowledge on things such as Excel, CPU entry and recently I began cross-training in the orientation process as well. I am excited for my future with SIMOS.

Jordan Barkley, 2nd Shift Supervisor

My role has helped the client by hitting certain goals and deadlines on time. Working for SIMOS has helped my career by letting me grow within the company and giving me the experience and knowledge I need to succeed.

Dave Aiello, Operations Performance Lead

What keeps me here is the trust and respect within the leadership team. Zach took a chance with me on the performance lead position and it has helped me grow and develop my skills with the team. I’ve helped build the success of the weekend night shift, where we had a high temp-to-hire ratio success (71% success roughly). I was proud of that crew. SIMOS has helped me grow with learning opportunities and internal growth within the company. Plus the support and trust of the leadership team helps me feel secure and confident in my decisions.

Kent Wilson, Implementation Lead

The leadership team took time to ensure we knew the processes as well checked on our well-being. Not only that, but Zach helped me find an opportunity as a lead with the company and I continued to grow from there. My role on Day Shift was incredible and the relationships I felt I helped create and bridge for SIMOS still make me feel proud. I have been able to explore and see multiple accounts across the country and help provide support. Every day brings a new challenge in some way, shape, or form. I enjoy approaching these tasks and challenges and growing from them to not only better myself, but everyone around me. It has helped me feel more confident in the leader I am, as well know I have support with the team.

Terrell Williams, Performance Supervisor

I am most proud of running one of the most, if not the most, efficient shifts over the past few months. I’ve worked so hard with my team to get to a point where we can run like a well-oiled machine when we are at our best. By stepping up and giving my team the proper knowledge and tools to execute their day-to-day assignments I feel as if I have helped grow our company’s value to the client. Working for SIMOS has helped me develop skills I didn’t know I had by pushing me and taking me out of my comfort zone to expand my horizons.

Ben Crawley, Operations Manager

I joined SIMOS because the concept of a CPU production model was interesting. The opportunity for internal growth was apparent and I wanted to bring my skills and qualifications to the team and build a career. Developing the most well-run shifts for our site during my time as supervisor, strengthening the working business partnership with our client and continuing to improve overall fiscal production metrics as the operations manager are my biggest successes. I love finding ways to make the job more efficient and inject a positive narrative in the day-to-day lives our associates.

Zach Williams, Operations Manager

I appreciate the team I work with and the environment I am in. I have helped create a positive customer relationship that I enjoy. I feel my role has helped reshape the view of SIMOS at our customer site. When I first began there, there was a large gap between us and the client. I have helped create a consistent and positive relationship built on trust and respect to help bring in more business. This job has taught me flexibility and adaptiveness. I feel my quick thinking skills and overall decisiveness have grown because of working with the company. I appreciate the team and overall support that the company provides and it helps show what it truly means to be part of a team.

Tracy Kenney, Operations Manager

I like the culture as well as the challenges and rewards of CPU. I like the concept of being able to move to different sites to help make a difference for the customer. Communicating daily with the client shows our commitment to help them succeed. By forming a relationship with the client, it helps to build trust and partnership. It has given me the knowledge and experience needed to become the best leader I can be.

None of these successes would have been possible without leaders and customers who encourage experimentation and workers who try new skills and find opportunities to collaborate and teach each other. Having space and encouragement to learn and grow is so important for both companies and workers. As companies look for new ways to recruit and retain employees, reskilling and upskilling employees will take on an even greater importance, leading to new ways to engage and retain workers.

About the Author

Writer. Photographer. Runner. World traveler. Sports fan. Proud left-hander.

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