Week four in the Corporate Management Training Program was centered around the Operations Division of the company. This week exposed us to the departments of Procurement, Supply Chain, and Manufacturing. It offered many of us an entirely new perspective on the movement of products through our supply chain and manufacturing facilities, and it allowed us to build a richer understanding of the execution of products from raw materials to shelf.
As someone who began this week with a very narrow understanding of operations, I was excited to begin the process. My name is Colleen Green, and I am a recent graduate from Fairfield University in Fairfield, CT. During my undergraduate coursework, I studied marketing and professional writing. I came to Kraft Heinz for the opportunity to work on iconic brands focusing on strategic communication and long-term brand strategy/health. After working for several creative marketing agencies, I knew I was passionate about the CPG space. However, there was a significant gap in my knowledge about how a product moves through the supply chain and is created from start to finish in a manufacturing facility. The Corporate Management Trainee Program helped me to fill that gap.
Throughout the week, we heard from several senior-level professionals including V.P. of North America Manufacturing Excellence, Theresa Bertucci, and Head of North American Customer Supply Chain, Graham Teague. It was incredible to learn more about each of their fields and hear about new product development from an operations perspective. In the middle of the week, the company organized a happy hour after work for the trainees to mingle with the Operations Department. At the end of the week, my cohort had the opportunity to visit Kraft Heinz’s largest manufacturing plant which is in Champaign, IL.
This plant manufactures the Kraft, Heinz, A.1., Miracle Whip, and Grey Poupon brands. I was absolutely amazed at the efficiencies within our manufacturing process and the dedication of the manufacturing personnel—many of whom have worked at the plant over 10 years.
Instead of a favorite quote this week, I wanted to share my favorite concept which was “servant leadership”. I think that this concept is applicable to people in all functions at every stage in their career at Kraft Heinz. The Director of Manufacturing for Beverages and Snack Nuts, Scott Frick, described servant leadership as using your position to make others, especially those who work for you, successful in every way that you can.