June 29, 2018
Navigating a career path is easier with mentors to provide guidance, share experiences and offer encouragement along the way.
<p>Through <a href="https://www.gopenske.com/" rel="noopener">Penske’s</a> Women in the Field (WIF) initiative, the company is working to develop its next generation of women leaders.</p><p>The program brings women from across the company’s field operations together to provide its participants with development programs, networking, and mentorship opportunities.</p><p class="shortcode-media shortcode-media-rebelmouse-image"><img class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="264b5569c6259eeb5ffdebff54d3543d" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" id="86348" type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8xOTEyODU5My9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYxNDQ3MzI2NX0.-qaoSUu1ddKCwbEjsTGg0CESNul6ZbVMuHgVZEblce4/img.jpg?width=980"/><small class="image-media media-caption">Carie Seymour</small></p><p>“It is a dedicated and customized training and development opportunity with the goal of capitalizing on the potential of women in the field and enhancing their performance,” said <strong>Carie Seymour</strong>, director of field Human Resources for Penske Truck Leasing’s Northeast Region and Diversity and Inclusion initiatives.</p><p>At Penske Truck Leasing, district managers and branch managers play integral roles. They are exposed to a wide range of responsibilities including facility operations, staffing, customer service, sales, compliance, and ensuring financial performance for multiple locations.</p><p>Promotion from within its own field ranks is central to Penske's strategy, which relies on building a strong pipeline of talented candidates to fill the next generation of leadership roles.</p><p><strong>Identifying Leadership Potential </strong></p><p>The first WIF efforts began in 2015 with 13 women. Over the past three years, 36 women have participated in the program. The women were nominated by their local leaders to participate.</p><p>“It is really a collaborative effort from field HR and leadership within the regions,” Seymour said. “We nominate women, who differentiate themselves through consistent performance and drive and a desire to grow and advance. So, they have to be willing, able, and high performing.”</p><p>WIF features a combination of presentations from Penske leaders from within the company, external speakers as well as opportunities for participants to work on group projects.</p><p>The focus of WIF is to accelerate personal and professional development, highlight potential, and to invite women to consider taking on greater roles of responsibility and leadership at Penske.</p><p>The program is showing early signs of paying off.</p><p>“When we started the program, we had just one female district manager. Today, we have five female district managers,” Seymour said. “Our WIF program helps women explore the possibility of these kinds of operational leadership positions. These important field operations positions can provide long-tenured career paths to our executive ranks.’”</p><p>“Some women would never raise their hand. Yet, in the WIF environment, they are networking with one another and are encouraged to raise their hand and seek whatever they want to do here.” Seymour said. “And, WIF will help them with what they need to achieve success.”</p><p><strong>Impacting Women in the Field</strong></p><p class="shortcode-media shortcode-media-rebelmouse-image"><img class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="983e352576b582b0bea881696b1f9b7e" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" id="31223" type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8xOTEyODU5NC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY1MTUzOTEzNH0.yQNoEPRN_9yrZJ7onQIdl-B74168DBaJd6fFg6a8qxM/img.jpg?width=980"/><small class="image-media media-caption">Cassidy Sommer</small></p><p>A few years ago<strong>, Cassidy Sommer</strong> was asked about her ultimate career goal with Penske. Sommer was a branch rental manager at the time and remembered saying she wanted to be a district administrator instead of saying a district manager or area vice president.</p><p>“I was kind of embarrassed. I don’t know why I never thought of that,” said Sommer, who is now a branch manager in Sheboygan, Wisconsin.</p><p>“Women in the Field really helped me realize that, there is no reason why you can’t be a district manager, an area vice president or whatever role you want,” she said.</p><p>Now, what are her career goals?</p><p>“My long-term goal is to be a district manager,” Sommer said. “My shorter-term goal would be to learn more about the leasing and maintenance side of the business to prepare myself to, hopefully at one point, be a district manager.”</p><p>***</p><p class="shortcode-media shortcode-media-rebelmouse-image"><img class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="1851516f58d274eedcda61a932b92147" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" id="64c4b" type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8xOTEyODU5NS9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY1MzYwMzUzN30.HglNXQxnolL9NIdGP2p8F1Lrhj0TxaDXdFJi3q_1OIw/img.jpg?width=980"/><small class="image-media media-caption">Kourtney Marapese</small></p><p><strong>Kourtney Marapese</strong> was one of the early WIF participants. She returned to her Cleveland district so inspired after a WIF meeting that she helped to form a local version of the program to encourage</p><p>and empower other women at her location.</p><p>“I really developed a lot from WIF. I wanted to share that experience with the other female associates in our district,” said Marapese, assistant district manager.</p><p>About 20 women participated in Marapese’s local event, which featured discussions on topics such as defining success and creating your path, effective leadership skills as well as networking opportunities.</p><p>“Being a part of WIF helped me grow in my profession,” Marapese said. “My goal was our associates would be able to see that as well, and make connections with other associates and deepen relationships.”</p><p>***</p><p class="shortcode-media shortcode-media-rebelmouse-image"><img class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="31337e9127a58d9e8eb2cca21f2b27fe" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" id="7c1e8" type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8xOTEyODU5Ni9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYxNDkyNzY0OX0.ZGqo6bIBkoTsvurYfX8GEKBKNLguNxcHCqf0p53ouzs/img.jpg?width=980"/><small class="image-media media-caption">Katelyn O'Brien</small></p><p>When<strong> Katelyn O’Brien </strong>began her career with Penske in 2010, she was often the only woman in the room in meetings.</p><p>“To see how much that has changed in last few years is really encouraging,” said O’Brien, a branch manager in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania.</p><p>One of the benefits of having participated in WIF for two years is seeing the career progression of other attendees.</p><p>“Coming back and seeing the same women and hearing they have been promoted into different roles or gone into a new path, that to me is the most compelling,” O’Brien said. “Seeing the success of the women that we have in the group has really given me role models for my career.”</p><p>***</p><p class="shortcode-media shortcode-media-rebelmouse-image"><img class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="181ece9ff06504a23e3f209d798dc1c2" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" id="6a9e1" type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8xOTEyODU5Ny9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYzMTM5MTU2Nn0.gscD5unJs8fkgMdgKSSYsTgpPYAgYWnLeCxx0KnsgkE/img.jpg?width=980"/><small class="image-media media-caption">Kristin Thorne</small></p><p>As a part-time associate in Kansas City, Missouri, <strong>Kristin Thorne </strong>noticed female associates were working in administrative roles and not in operational positions.</p><p>“I told myself that I was going to be in management one day. I didn’t really have a female to mentor me,” said Thorne, now the branch manager in West Valley City, Utah. “I just kind of did it.”</p><p>Now Thorne fills a mentor role for other young women who would like to advance into management.</p><p>“Every time a young woman comes up to me and says ‘I want you to be my mentor’ or ‘Can you help me with this?’ I put 100 percent of my effort into helping them,” she said.</p><p>WIF has not only empowered Thorne to help shape the careers of others, but Thorne said she has been changed.</p><p>“It has really helped me mature and see these other women; what they are doing to get ahead,” said Thorne, who was inspired to join her local Chamber of Commerce.</p><p>“Seeing these powerful women has given me confidence. I am a powerful young woman, and I am here to make a change.”</p><p><em>Penske Truck Leasing and Penske Logistics offer a range of career opportunities including truck fleet maintenance technicians, truck drivers, fleet maintenance supervisors, operations management roles, logistics and supply chain operations roles and many others. Visit </em><a href="https://www.gopenske.com/careers/"><em>gopenske.com/careers</em></a><em> for more information.</em></p><p><em>By Bernie Mixon</em></p> <p>.</p> </div>
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Memorable first impressions form from the most ordinary gestures, like a warm, confident smile and a strong handshake.
<p>Moments of introduction can have a lasting impact extending far beyond their delivery in long-forgotten social settings or business gatherings, so it is important to know how to make the most of them.</p><p>Leadership lessons like these were among the advice the Penske Women’s Network (PWN) passed on recently to the Girl Scouts of Eastern Pennsylvania (GSEP) during the fourth annual Take the Lead training held at Penske’s corporate headquarters in Reading, Pennsylvania.</p><p>“From the Girl Scout perspective, everything we do is based on leadership and developing girls who are strong leaders who are confident but also have courage and character. So it is really important to us that we provide that safe environment for them to grow in that way,” said Erin Vermeulen, director of girl experience and day camps for GSEP.</p><p>Having PWN members deliver these leadership messages is meaningful.</p><p>“Penske has been amazing in providing strong women who are able to do that for our girls, really be open and have conversations with them, teach them things they have learned and expose them to new situations that are important for girls to learn,” Vermeulen said.</p><p>Nearly 70 scouts from young girls to teenagers participated in a half-day of training to prepare for Take the Lead 2018, the organization’s annual fundraising event honoring local women leaders, which will be held April 4 in Reading.</p><p>This year’s honorees are Patricia Giles, foundation associate, Wyomissing Foundation; Dr. Jodi Radosh, co-author of “Shoot, Edit, Share” and an Alvernia University professor; and Jeanne Savage, community volunteer, Freedom Auto Group.</p><p>Many of the girls in attendance will have roles during the event introducing the honorees, serving as ushers and greeters, performing in the chorus and capturing the event in photographs and on social media.</p><p>While PWN members were more than happy to share their vast experience with the young girl scouts, the women received so much more in return.</p><p>“The Girl Scouts bring a great energy that reminds us how important it is to stay connected with our community and stay engaged,” said Allison Coffey, marketing campaign manager, who coordinated the event with Melody Kaag, manager of leave and accommodations in the Human Resources department.</p><p>During the training PWN members hosted breakout sessions to deliver tips on how to deliver a handshake, photography and social media tips as well as proper table etiquette.</p><p><img class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="3c95824f87daff92bdd780bbdedbc856" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" id="96a8c" type="lazy-image" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8xOTEyODUxMC9vcmlnaW4uanBnIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYwOTE2NDIwNH0.4ljdlrj1rEbGuqDDEAHvBf2oR_w78SSJcV4TVQDgcY0/img.jpg?width=980"/></p><p>For Elizabeth Reed, a diversity and inclusion specialist in the company’s Human Resources department, it was her first year participating in the event. Reed, along with Shannon Pennock, a billing coordinator, worked with the girls on how to deliver a proper handshake.</p><p>“Learning the proper way to shake someone’s hand is very impactful, especially at a young age,” Reed said. “They say practice makes perfect. We want the girls to feel empowered and to be confident with the skills that we are teaching them in preparation for this event.”</p><p>The skills modeled by PWN volunteers are ones the girls can take with them and use for a lifetime.</p><p>“Just having that confidence to be able to stand up in front of these adults and shake their hands and introduce themselves is a huge success for them,” said Vermeulen. “It is really about becoming a well-rounded individual and having those skills to move forward.”</p><p><em>By Bernie Mixon </em></p></div>
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