Leadership opportunities drive rewarding career for Lynchburg supervisor
Over Paula Lambert’s 26 years at IPEX’s plant in Lynchburg, Virginia, a positive environment, great colleagues and benefits have made coming to work each day a pleasure.
The opportunity to learn and take on increasing responsibility has made her career particularly rewarding.
Aiming higher at IPEX
“I started as a machine operator. I was 27, at the beginning of my career, and eager to learn,” Paula explains. “I worked hard to understand how to operate the machines correctly and strove to improve each day.”
Paula always had the desire to do more at IPEX. Given her hard work and ambition, she quickly realized her goals.
“I always wanted to learn more and move onto the next level. Within one year of working at the plant, I moved up to a lead position.”
Since then, Paula has had several positions of increasing responsibility, including working as the production supervisor on the plant’s molding production team.
As a supervisor on the A team–or first shift–Paula’s responsibilities included ensuring that all team members followed procedures accordingly, checking the machines and gasketed joint injection-molded fittings for drainage, and ensuring the next shift’s team was ready to take over.
Building the team
Paula’s approach to leadership involves organization and passing on knowledge and experience to her colleagues, some of whom have used these lessons to become shift supervisors themselves.
“I love to organize things, I love for things to be nice and neat and set in order, and I enjoy teaching other people what I know,” says Paula. “And that’s how I built my team–setting an example and sharing knowledge.”
“As the team grew, my supervisor acknowledged our success and wanted to give me more opportunities. That’s how I got to where I am. But I’m still anxious to keep learning!”
Indeed, Paula has recently made another career move. She is now responsible for running production reports, working on a framework to create a more organized and productive workplace, and developing training manual books to keep all employees current.
She is also training another supervisor to take over the A team.
Hands-on approach to leadership
For new employees, Paula says a great attitude, a willingness to learn, dependability and a team approach will take you far at IPEX. For those looking for leadership success, it’s time to get involved.
“Just because you’re a supervisor, that doesn’t mean that you have to sit back and watch,” she says.
“Get in and interact, understand your team’s perspective. When you identify with them, it’s easier to improve their experience. When you ask your team for ideas and suggestions, you can land on solutions that work for everyone.”
To read more news and views from IPEX employees, visit the Employee Perspectives blog.