Karen Sylvia Simmons

This entry is part 58 of 69 in the series

Karen Sylvia Simmons, Shaw’sKaren Sylvia Simmons

Shaw’s Supermarkets
Category Manager

Education degrees and professional/volunteer organizations:
M.B.A.

Mentors and how have they assisted you in your career:
Over the span of my life and career I have had the benefit of many great mentors.    My first being my parents who guided me to work hard, always put my best foot forward and to be compassionate towards others.  They allowed me to make my own decisions, told me to be open to change and that mistakes provide new opportunities to learn.   At Shaw’s I have been fortunate to have had several mentors who guided me though the various steps of building my career. They willingly shared their knowledge of the business and taught me the importance of building relationships and trust with co-workers and business partners.   My mentors worked closely with me always leading by example.  They were able to provide growth opportunities at the right times that enhanced my career.

What are you most proud of in your career achievements? Do you have a defining moment of your career to date?
I am proud of the fact that I have worked hard striving for and achieving increasing levels of responsibility in both operations management and merchandising.    Over the years opportunities that were presented helped me to expand my skill sets including team building.  I feel that team building is one of the most important skills that I have and have utilized often in stores and in the office.    As a team our priorities have always been to work hard at understanding the needs of our customers and the business.   Together we utilized the knowledge and strength of each individual and put together plans that ultimately resulted in positive impacts to the business.  Another opportunity that has been especially fulfilling for me has been being able to mentor and help others develop in their career paths.

Advice for upcoming younger executives:
My advice for upcoming young executives is to take advantage of every opportunity by living in the present, learning from the past and remaining optimistic about the future.  Approach everything you do with passion and work hard at achieving your goals.    Always make the most of your life both professionally and personally.  Lastly if you have the good fortune to have a mentor,  utilize that person’s skills to help you grow.

Hobbies:
Traveling, working out, reading and meeting new people.