Lisa Taylor, Director at Fresh Grocer, Leads and Strategically Serves the Community During a CrisisMar 17, 2021 09:00AM ● By Nana Ama Addo
A shining characteristic of an exceptional leader is the ability to continue strategic processes, even in the midst of a crisis. Lisa Taylor is the Director at Fresh Grocer on Monument Road. After climbing the corporate ladder, she joined the ShopRite team, which is operated by Brown’s Super Stores Inc.. Here, she has faced and conquered many COVID-related work challenges.
Now, Lisa shares the strategies she used to elevate her position in workspaces and the tools she employed to maneuver changes that COVID-19 brought in.
When describing her gradual process of success and the role of mentorship in her development, she says:
“I work very hard in the positions I fulfill. Many Managers and District Managers saw my potential, trained me, developed me, and encouraged me to keep moving forward because all of them saw me as a Store Director.
My supermarket journey started as a cashier in Atlanta, and that led to a promotion to Deli Clerk just six months after being hired. A year after that, I was promoted to Assistant Deli Manager, and then Deli Manager soon after.
As the years went by, I continued advancing in different companies, filling Assistant Store Manager positions. This eventually led to my position as Store Manager. I came to ShopRite with Store Manager experience and was hired as a Lead Assistant Manager. Being a Lead allowed me to learn the company culture and how ShopRite operates as a business. So here I am, a Store Director for ShopRite, with one year under my belt.”
The passion and dedication Lisa has for her job drives her daily tasks. Through her work, she is able to mentor others, just as her superiors prepared her for the position she is in today. She describes the most rewarding and challenging parts of her roles:
“What I love most is being in charge of overseeing everything from soup to nuts; the good, bad, and ugly. I also enjoy having some kind of involvement in my associates' lives, whether professional and/or personal. It’s not always easy, but I have a passion for this business that drives me every day to give 150%. The most challenging aspect is maintaining your composure and remaining positive with your staff every day.”
COVID presented new challenges for Lisa as a Store Manager, but with her tenacity and grit she was able to weather the storm for herself and other employees while working in tandem with the Corporate office:
“Initially, it was challenging. However, observing the new protocols helped put things into perspective for me, and created greater awareness of how detrimental COVID-19 is. Corporate does a great job of communicating to the stores what needs to be done and furnishes stores with supplies and equipment. What we did, and continue to do, is far greater than any of our competitors. We want our customers and staff to feel safe shopping and working all the time. Brown’s ShopRite is a company that prides itself on Safety and Sanitation.”
ShopRite currently exercises its corporate social responsibility by providing COVID safety resources for staff and the public it serves. Lisa describes some of these resources:
“We are always posting events, utilizing our PA system, and hosting events in our stores. We also use social media to promote how customers/staff can become more educated on this terrible virus, where to go for vaccination, etc.
We also want our customers to know that our associate’s temperatures are taken daily, cashiers continuously wash their hands, and loading belts are frequently sanitized throughout their shifts. Employees also are required to stand behind Plexiglas. In addition, we wipe down shopping carts regularly, and throughout the day we walk around the store and sanitize touchpoints.”
Lisa has advice for Black women looking to further their careers. She says, “My advice is to follow your heart and passion. If you really want to do it, then give it your all. Do not be afraid of failure; it is part of your journey. If you fall, don't stay there. Get up, brush yourself off, and get back on the path. Never expect anything from anybody. Surround yourself with positive, hard-working, ambitious people who want you to succeed, and lean on them for support. You can do anything you set your mind to, and do not let anyone tell you otherwise.”
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