Delaney Ritter started her career in international tax transfer pricing at Ernst & Young in Düsseldorf, Germany, before moving to Chicago. She became a business unit coordinator at Jabil in 2019 and was promoted to business unit manager in the home personal and professional segment in 2020. Ritter became the operations manager of the Hanover Park, Ill., injection molding packaging facility in 2021, managing about 200 employees.
In her role, Ritter handles safety, engineering, maintenance, tool room, quality, human resources and overall operations. She leads the plant in operational excellence and continuous improvement to ensure a safe working environment.
"My greatest achievement is becoming operations manager at Hanover Park. This position was something I never dreamed would be a possibility. I am humbled to be selected for this opportunity. Serving the dedicated team at the Hanover Park site is absolutely my greatest achievement," she said.
Ritter's first job in the plastics industry was in the quality department during high school and college.
"My father was heavily involved in this industry for the past 30 years; plastic is in my blood," she said. "I grew up in a plastics manufacturing environment and always loved the people and the tangible nature of our work. I loved seeing my and my team's work in retail stores."
Ritter has a bachelor's degree in international business.
"I am one of the first female operations managers in Jabil Packaging Solutions' history. I may also be one of the youngest. Typically these positions are held by older males who have been in the industry their entire career," she said. "I want to show my team and others that diversity in leadership yields improved collaboration, inclusion and challenges the status quo."
Q: What has been the biggest impact or challenge on your career from the coronavirus pandemic?
Ritter: I was in a commercial role at Jabil in the beginning of the pandemic, which meant working from home for a full year. In this time, I learned that I am much happier working with and around other people vs. sitting at home on the phone. In my operations position, the pandemic showed me how capable, flexible and dedicated my team is. They are capable of hitting targets and satisfying the customer while also keeping themselves and others safe.
Q: If you were CEO of a company, what would you do first?
Ritter: If I was the CEO of a company, the first thing I would do is get to know the people so I can listen to their ideas and needs. The people make or break your company's success; no one wants to work somewhere where their ideas and needs aren't met. Listening to feedback from bottom to top is the only way to ensure that you are executing and serving your team in an efficient and effective way.
Q: What is the best advice you have ever received?
Ritter: Focus on progress, not perfection. This advice challenged my mindset [and] helps me see the forest beyond the trees.