Progressive Grocer - June 2018 - 106

COVER FEATURE

2018 Top Women in Grocery
Michelle
Delamielleure

Director, Consumer
Insights and
Analytics,
Schwan's Consumer
Brands Inc.

Representing the consumer
in all strategy aspects, Delamielleure has instilled a consumer-first perspective within the
organization by keeping the
consumer front and center in
all business decisions; this was
accomplished through training
sessions and presentation.
She guided her team to create
infographics to share learnings,
developing and implementing
an enterprise-wide best-in-class
approach to consumer-first
innovation for Schwan's.
Delamielleure conducted largescale brand-equity studies across
every brand within Schwan's retail
portfolio, and used these learnings
to find opportunities for improvement of the company's brands.

Melissa Van
Gheem

Human Resources
Director, Skogen's
Festival Foods

Van Gheem led
a complete transformation of the Festival Foods
performance management
process, abandoning performance ratings to use career and
engagement discussions.
Her new associate empowerment program, You'll Love
It, We Promise, gives every
associate, regardless of rank,
the ability to do anything,
using their discretion, to solve
a customer's problem.
Van Gheem rolled out the Onboarding Playbook, which helps
reduce turnover and targets the
first three critical months of employment; she was also selected
to train department managers in
collaborative leadership.

106

progressivegrocer.com

Jessica
Longshore

Director, Field
Sales Strategy,
Schwan's Consumer
Brands Inc.

In her first year, Longshore's
team won Zone of the Year in the
East region.
She was promoted to director
of field sales strategy, in which
capacity one of her first tasks
was to lead the launch and
ongoing management of
new hand-held technology,
providing teams with tools for
best-in-class execution.
Longshore developed a
checklist and an action plan to
ensure that newly hired area
managers had the necessary
equipment, standard operating
procedures and knowledge,
testing the process with her
own managers and then sharing it broadly with her
peer group.

Madelyn Brooks
Human Resources
Manager, Associate
Relations and
Compliance,
Smart & Final

The corporate
office underwent a major change
in 2017, and Brooks played a significant role in helping corporate
staff manage and work through
the change.
California requires that all
management staff complete a
workplace harassment training
session every two years, so, as
2017 was a training year for the
company, she ensured that all
associates completed this training through a new online system.
Brooks saved the company
more than $3 million in unemployment claims and work
opportunity tax credits (WOTC),
and moved the company from
paper WOTC forms to online.

Angela
McKeand

Director, Strategic
Growth Channels
Marketing,
Schwan's Consumer
Brands Inc.

McKeand acquired cross-functional leadership alignment and
support in the creation of a new
channel marketing vision and
go-to-market capabilities; she
was charged with building a
dedicated support team and
developing long-term strategies
for this channel.
She spearheaded initial customer discovery conversations,
teasing out what shoppers'
needs were.
The sales team of a strategic
customer came to McKeand
to oversee the development
of a new product representing
multimillion-dollar growth for
Schwan's; she involved many
areas within the company to successfully create the product.

Kim Cook

General Manager,
Transportation and
Traffic, Smart & Final

Managing negotiations and the
selection process
with all third-party carriers, as
well as $3 million in backhaul
revenue, Cook helped drive improvement of inbound transportation on-time performance from
81 percent in 2016 to 85 percent
in 2017 through a partnership
with the buying team.
She created and implemented
an innovative less-than-load
(LTL) backhaul program with the
potential to increase backhaul
revenues by 20 percent.
A certified Oz accountability trainer, Cook worked with
Unipro and current carriers to
add 20-plus vendors and more
than $250,000 in revenue to the
backhaul program in 2017.

RISING STARS

Tracy Cleaves

Front End
Operations Senior
Director, Skogen's
Festival Foods

By looking for
best practices in each store
and implementing them across
the company, Cleaves created
efficiencies that reduced labor by
more than $400,000 during the
last fiscal year.
After listening carefully to customer complaints that receipts
were difficult to understand,
she redesigned them and then
worked with the vendor partner
to implement the changes.
Responsible for the assessment and performance of more
than 2,500 associates, Cleaves
created a new training program
for customer service representatives and launched a new online
associate training program, The
Hub, which attained 94 percent
participation.

Amanda Cuellar
Corporate
Merchandising
Manager,
Smart & Final

Through training,
Cuellar strove to
elevate the work performance
not only of her team, but also of
associates directly affected by
Smart & Final's project work.
She helped create a centralized
merchandising internet portal
that houses all current documents needed for remodels and
new store projects, and was part
of the team working on the new
tag and sign program, which
rolled out this year.
Cuellar controlled all budgets
on capital projects, underspending on most; 2017 merchandising
projects that she participated
in included 14 new stores, five
major remodels, five expansions
and 22 natural food additions.


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