faces of the frontline: manufacturing’s all stars

Eucary Pineda
BettyBody Foods

Realizing a dream begins with tenacity and collaboration

It’s a story that’s about as close to the American Dream as you can get. In 2018, Eucary Pineda left her native country, Venezuela, to travel to the United States and start fresh. She moved to Utah with few belongings and very little ability to speak English. But she dug in and got a job as a line worker at BetterBody Foods.

Eucary took the bravery that brought her to this country and channeled it into her work. Within four years, she moved from production to sanitation and then became one of three supervisors on the day shift. When a new production line was introduced, there was unanimous confidence among the management team in Eucary’s ability to lead it.

The leadership team was so impressed with her, that they fought over her. Production Manager Darin Diamond recalls his disappointment when he had to give her up so she could move to the sanitation team — and his resulting jubilation when he was able to ‘get her back’ by promoting her to line supervisor.

“Eucary has impressed me since very early on as somebody that we can count on and somebody that kind of embodies the idea of continuous improvement and personal growth,” – Eric McCuistion, VP of Manufacturing

What’s so special about Eucary? She stands out for many reasons.

For starters, she has a passion for problem solving. Her natural drive to improve the world around her led her to be an early adopter of Redzone and to study BetterBody Foods’ machines, processes, and products in great depth. She’s consistently looking for new ways to leverage Redzone and other tools around the factory to increase productivity and efficiency.

And it’s a good thing because not long into her tenure as a line supervisor, she and her team were alerted that startup on the peanut butter line was taking too long. The problem seemed to stem from the setup — everyone was completing the setup differently with no standards or guidance in place.

Eucary’s proactive nature kicked in; she immediately wanted to jump in and start helping with each setup.

Her leadership team laughs as they describe how they had to ‘hold her back’ and, instead, encourage her to work with them on developing standards and training they could log and track in Redzone. Eucary pivoted and brought several teams together to come up with solutions. But first, she saw a specific problem they could solve: Instead of the line workers retrieving materials from the warehouse at the beginning of their shift and delivering them to the line for startup, the warehouse team could bring the necessary materials to the line so they would be there when the line workers arrived.

This simple solution, in conjunction with her help in developing standards, had a big result. Startup is now 45 minutes faster across four lines, every day. The new process was such a success that it was adopted by BetterBody Foods across all production lines.

When Eucary uncovers a problem, her first reaction is to find the tools to fix it.

And she’s not afraid to power through a language barrier to do it.

In fact, she frequently used Redzone’s translation features to learn English and better communicate with her team. “We’ve challenged all of our supervisors to find creative ways to reduce costs,” explains Darin. “Eucary says with a smile, ‘I have this idea, we need to get these things that blow air.’ She didn’t even know what they were called.”

But Eucary plowed forward, pulling together her team and brainstorming solutions from buying air knives to finding existing tools around the factory they could repurpose. And her commitment doesn’t stop there. When she participated in a Kaizen event, supported by Redzone, she was offered a translator to assist her in her presentation. Eucary declined the offer and powered through in English, simply because she felt her words would be more powerful if they were communicated in her colleagues’ first language.

“I have a passion for training,” she says, and this drives her to collaborate across departments, and sometimes even help coworkers on the next shift after her own shift is done. She doesn’t look at a problem from just one angle. She’ll bring in maintenance, purchasing, scheduling, and any other departments to fully understand a problem and discuss potential solutions.

“Eucary doesn’t just look at what’s in front of her. She’ll look at the next 24 hours, the next 48 hours on the schedule… She’ll catch some of these things that we need to prepare for, whether it be equipment that we don’t have currently, or we need to move. Having those eyes that are looking ahead down the road, for me, is tremendous”, says Darin.

Eucary believes technology like Redzone is one of the important tools frontline workers should leverage and encourages her team to use it to improve their positions. She feels the more her team members participate in learning and applying digital tools, the better their performance, leading to an easier and more enjoyable workplace for everyone.

Eucary’s colleagues were recently asked what words they would use to describe. Phrases like “a perfectionist with patience,” “leads with humility and example,” “knowledgeable,” and “tenacious”were confidently presented. Her lasting impression on employees across BetterBody Foods is undeniable.

And this is how she earned her place as a 2022 QAD Redzone Frontline MVP Award winner. She followed her courage to establish a better life and continues to follow it to better her career and her future.

Additional stories from Faces of the Frontline: Manufacturing’s All Stars.

Tales of Triumph from the Factory Floor, Vol.1

As part of our “Faces of the Frontline: Manufacturing’s All Stars” series, our eBook highlights some of the inspiring stories of frontline workers at BetterBody Foods, Gorilla Glue, Empire Bakery, Allied Wire & Cable, and ASR Group. Discover how they have not only transformed their company’s factories, but have also become true champions of innovation and all stars in manufacturing.