Michele McDonnell

 

Director of Operations

What is your role and function at WPS? 

I am the Director of Operations for WPS. Demand planning, sourcing and procurement, facility management, customer service, and fulfillment are all part of the Operations Department. 

My primary function is to ensure that the operations team maintains our beautiful work space so that our employees have a safe and healthy working environment. We reduce expenses without sacrificing quality; we optimize processes and create efficiency; we maintain optimal stock levels to ensure our customers have the products they need; and we continue to find ways to provide the best customer care in the industry.  

 

What issues or needs are you an advocate for inside the company?

I am an advocate for our core values. I incorporate them in meetings, interactions with staff, our vendors, and my life outside of work. New employees are often impressed to see that the core values we talked about during their interview processes actually exist day to day at WPS.      

 

How long have you been at WPS?

I started at WPS on March 30, 2016. Since then, I have seen many of our staff challenge themselves to grow and learn. It’s one of the most rewarding parts of working at WPS; everyone is encouraged to be the best they can be.    

 

Where are you from? Where did you grow up?

I am a California girl! I grew up in Culver City, CA, and spent my weekends and summers on the beach from Malibu to Hermosa Beach. I’ve lived on the East Coast and Kauai, but California will always be home.  

 

What are three personal things about you people probably wouldn’t know?

I acted in many local plays from ages 8­–12 and once played Charlie in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

I was vegan for 14 years. 

I took violin lessons as an adult and learned to play “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star.”  

(All true!)

 

What’s a big obstacle you’ve had to overcome in your life or career?

As a young adult, I lacked the discipline needed to finish college. One of my niece’s dreams was to go to college. She was a talented artist, musician, and loved to learn. After fighting leukemia for 5 years, she passed away at 23.  It was at that time that I made a promise to myself to finish college as a way to honor her, and I did so with honors. 

 

What’s your personal connection to the WPS mission?

I am not a parent but have 19 nieces and nephews that I’ve parented at one time or another during the course of their lives. Some have had speech and language issues, others have needed the help of their school psychologist. After coming to WPS and learning about our products and their uses in our school systems and connecting that back to my family’s needs, I understand how important our products are to the families we serve. 

 

What is your educational background?

I received a BS in business administration and management from Pepperdine University, The George L. Graziadio School of Business and Management. I am also a member of the Beta Gamma Sigma academic honors society.

 

What’s something you’re currently studying or learning?

I love to learn new things and recently started meditating daily. There is a lot of cacophony in the world today, and it’s been rewarding to learn how to be still and silent.

 

What do you enjoy most about working at WPS?

I work in a beautiful building with lots of natural light, side by side with very talented and smart people who truly care about each other and our customers. We have a lot of fun together whether it’s in meetings, the lunch room, or an afternoon of bowling.  

 

Where can we contact you?

My Email

My LinkedIn

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