Continuing with our series “Women in powersports”, we wanted to highlight the determination and boldness of Jodi Emmons, BRP Manufacturing System coordinator at our Evinrude manufacturing site in Sturtevant, Wisconsin, USA.
A graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater with a bachelor’s in Production and Operations Management, Jodi started her career with an electronics manufacturer, first as a production scheduler, then switching to program manager, before spending 13 years as a recruiter, helping people find jobs and companies meet their needs for a flexible workforce. She came back to manufacturing when she joined BRP as a production scheduler in 2013 She loves the energy of being in the plant: the smell, the noise, the products we build and the promise of adventure they hold… After being a supervisor for four years, Jodi now has an exciting role as MS Coordinator, where she helps with continuous improvement throughout the plant.
Jodi has always dared to be a little bit different as her vision of women in the powersports industry shows:
What’s it like to be a woman at BRP and in the powersports industry?
It feels good to be a woman at BRP. It’s exciting to be a part of an industry that provides adventure to people all over the world. There are always new innovations which keeps the work new and exciting as well. There’s also tremendous respect in the workplace and, I think, as a woman, I can bring a different perspective to the team.
How have things changed for women since you entered the job market?
Since I entered the job market 28 years ago, there has been a steady increase in the understanding that women add value to the workplace in all roles. There used to be assumptions about the type of work a woman would do, and a perception that they were not the breadwinner of the family. I don’t think that is a thought in people’s minds anymore. Every person who chooses to apply themselves in a career is given equal consideration to succeed.
What still needs to be done and what would be your advice to a woman who wants to work in this industry?
I would love to see more women in engineering and technical roles in manufacturing. This needs to start with adults encouraging young girls to develop their interest in math and science and to pursue such opportunities. So my advice would be: Be confident, tenacious, make sure your opinions are heard and back them up with real facts. Know that you have gifts to bring to the table that are valuable. Always let your managers know what your goals and aspirations are; they cannot read your mind. It might be assumed that because you are a woman, you don’t want more. Most importantly, continue to learn and build your skill sets; don’t wait for someone to show you, take it upon yourself to be an expert at everything you do.
Do you do things to promote women in your field and help them?
I think I do on a one-on-one basis. I love to help a person believe in themselves and offer encouragement and feedback when I see someone doing well. I hope that I have been a role model for some over the years.
How do you see the future?
I see a future where people’s career choice has nothing to do with gender, for all of us: men and women alike.
“Know that you have gifts to bring to the table that are valuable.”