WI Lean Six Sigma Manager / Corporate Idea Network Manager
Ashley Furniture Industries, Inc.
"I’m passionate about manufacturing because it’s always evolving. I thrive in an environment that fosters change. It is exciting and rewarding to engage employees in finding ways to improve quality, efficiency, and delivery, which allows us to learn something new every day because we accept challenges as opportunities to grow."
Wanda began at Ashley Furniture in 1991 as an assembly line worker producing nightstands. Her talents and passion for manufacturing were quickly recognized as she was promoted five times leading to her current position as the Wisconsin Lean Six Sigma Manager and Corporate Idea Network Manager for both Ashley’s Whitehall and Arcadia operations. Her passion has always been to keep manufacturing in the U.S. and to give Ashley’s customers great designs and safe, affordable furniture.
When challenges are tough, Wanda and her team are the first people that managers turn to. Wanda’s team always engage employees on the shop floor to participate and help find ways to proactively improve their processes. Ashley employees are committed to the continuous improvement culture because of the leadership and successes behind it.
Wanda’s role as a Lean Six Sigma Manager has given her many opportunities to mentor individuals and teams on various projects, ranging from new employees walking in the door to veteran employees who may be entrenched in their ways. Wanda always listens first, and her experience and documented successes are what make her effective at leading teams. She also conducts employee mentoring programs to help develop employees, both in leadership and continuous improvement, and is a transparent leader who is committed to help all the employees she mentors succeed.
Wanda is very active with local charities in her community, including serving on a range of boards and working as alderman in her ward. Wanda’s leadership and volunteerism clearly demonstrate her commitment to growing the community she and her family live in.