In the production facility Jackie Perez talks to employees on the floor, gaining first-hand information about the operations.

Working at Bendix in Mexico: a day in the life of Jackie Perez.

As Plant Manager, Jackie Perez is responsible for the production of commercial vehicle systems at Bendix in Acuña, Mexico. This campus near the Texan border combines four production facilities and employs around 2,000 people.

“What needs urgent attention right now?“ In her office Jackie Perez, sets clear priorities. Her secret weapon? Teamwork.

Teamwork from dawn till dusk

5:00 AM - Healthy living is important to me. As a part of that, I go for a 3 mile morning run twice a week, which lets me declutter my mind. Every day is different and presents new challenges and opportunities for growth and self-discovery, and I love that.

6:30 AM - I wake up my children for school, and make sure they eat breakfast and have their lunchboxes ready. With four children and three different schools, it takes help from both my husband and my mother to get them there.

7:15 AM - I leave for work, about 20 minutes’ drive away. I live in Del Rio, TX and drive across the international border to Acuña, where the Bendix campus is located.

Morning: status check and direct exchange with production team

8:00 AM - I check for urgent emails as soon as I arrive. I make sure to read the daily safety incident report; are there are any safety concerns that need to be addressed? I also review the internal dashboard to get the status of daily KPIs for the plants.

10:00 AM - There are four facilities in Acuña and in order to manage each successfully, our Shop Floor Management process is critical. Each plant starts with Power Base meetings at 7 a.m. and a plant-specific Power Center meeting at 8:00 am to bring leadership staff up to speed for their meeting at 10:00 am. At these meetings we address all topics from Safety and Capacity Planning to Finance. We also maintain very close contact with other facilities including Huntington, Bowling Green, and North Aurora.

Meetings dominate her day: From the daily Acuña Power Center meeting at 10 AM to a meeting with leadership staff.

11:00 AM - I put on PPE and walk one of the plants. I utilize this time to speak with people out on the floor and try to gauge the pulse of the organization. We all work hard, but we also take the time to recognize our collective achievements. We are proud to be part of this fantastic team.

Midday: time for social engagement and strategic topics

12:00 PM - Today I take time for lunch with the students on the CecyTec apprenticeship program, which Bendix supports. Social commitment is very important to who I am. We have built an orphanage here in Acuña with the support of Knorr-Bremse Global Care e. V., and I also serve on the board of a foundation which provides college scholarships for high school graduates.

1:00 PM - Today we have a monthly quality meeting. While we monitor KPIs on a daily basis, here we analyze overall trends and develop strategies for continuous improvement. It’s followed by a weekly review of the progress of our cost reduction projects which are key for Acuña to achieve annual productivity targets.

5:30 PM - I leave for the day. I often get asked “How do you do it all?” and the honest answer is that I don‘t. I do what is important to me and my family, based on what is going on with my life at the moment. As women, we tend to self-impose pressure and ideals about “doing it all” and once you realize that you don‘t have to, it‘s very liberating. Success comes from teamwork and relying on the expertise and help of others to accomplish goals and objectives.

Jackie Perez in discussions with a group of employees.

Evening: healthy exercise, quality time with the family and a final email check

7:00 PM - I attend Crossfit—a strength and conditioning program—with my oldest son. Not only does this help establish a healthy lifetime habit of fitness for him, but it allows for one-on-one mother / son time.

9:00 PM - Because the three manufacturing plants on our Acuña campus operate 24/7, I check emails at the end of the day. Everything OK.

Hard work and pride in collective achievements are shared by all at Bendix in Acuña.
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