Whirlpool’s Leadership Development Programs (LDP) focus on placing young professionals in challenging roles that not only develop their abilities to create, build, and drive differentiated results, but also gives them a chance to make a big impact at work and in the community. Over the last six months a few of our LDPs have had the chance to make the most of “Moments that Matter” and we wanted to the chance to highlight their work.
In his current rotation Andrew Schrepfer, a GSC LDP, was challenged with the task of executing a complex relocation project at our Amana Manufacturing Plant. The project involved relocating over 1,000 different kinds of parts – 130 truckloads worth – to a new storage space. Andrew recalled that “it was quite a unique project as we needed to move without interrupting our plant’s production lines. Plus, more importantly, we absolutely needed to complete the move within a three month time period.” On top of planning the timing of the move Andrew also oversaw the transition meetings with plant employees and ensured necessary building renovations were complete to make the move as smooth as possible. “We ended up moving the entire warehouse over the course of four weekends without any interruptions to our production line. Ultimately, we completed the project early! It took over 1,800 work hours between 60 hourly employees. It makes me very proud to know that our organization’s actions mitigated risk to the plant and ultimately provided our customers with appliances that positively impact their lives every day.” As the largest major appliance manufacturer in the world Andrew’s project had a huge impact on current production in a very direct way, but LDPs have also had the chance to work planning Whirlpool Corporation’s future state.
In an effort to become more efficient with product development Whirlpool Corporation recently began planning a new process by which products will be made. Robert Baer, a WERLD Engineer, had the chance to help with the development of this process and was tasked with creating the new tool that would be used to track future projects. “There was a need for a new tool to function as a project “checklist” and tracker, but no clear definition of what this would look like and how it would work. I was able to take the few requirements I had related to the project and build a new tool that not only generated project timelines, but would also be easily accessible and allow for collaboration by the team in tracking relevant project documents and responsibilities.” Robert completed this project on top of his day to day engineering work over the course of a month and the tool is something that will be used globally at the company. “Not only has the role given me the chance to provide input on a new process which I will have to follow during my career at Whirlpool Corporation, but I have also made something to help drive project efficiency for years to come.”
While LDP candidates are challenged at work on their projects, they also have made an extra effort to contribute to the community. Annie Wilson, a WERLD Engineer, worked on a fundraiser project following the Flint Water Crisis to help provide aid to those that needed it in Whirlpool Corporation’s home state of Michigan. Annie discussed the challenge of organizing such an event: “As a team, we set a stretch goal of $1500 to raise, almost double what previous fundraisers had accomplished.” Working with the LDP Advisory Board and the Whirlpool Young Professional Network they pulled together a trivia event, silent auction, and secured a donation match from the Whirlpool Foundation in three short months to quickly raise money and ensure they could help make an impact when Flint was in need of the most help. “As a result of the team’s efforts, we were able to put on a successful and exciting event with over 100 people in attendance and $6000 raised. The funds raised were donated to the United Way of Genesee County’s Flint Water Fund in order to address the immediate water needs of Flint residents. This experience taught me how to create a compelling strategy for a cause that I am passionate about and inspire my peers to work with me to achieve a common goal.”
Through all of these experiences, our LDPs are growing to be the best developed, young professionals they can be. Whirlpool Corporation is committed is to filing their program with the most talented college graduates to help them apply their skills to a global company and continue to grow business for years to come. These past six months have shown great results from the LDPs and we look forward to seeing what they are able to accomplish next.
August 15, 2016