Here’s to the women who are empowering, inspiring, and leading others!
This Women’s History Month, we’re celebrating our Women of BMW! Each nominee exemplifies the pillars of movement and BMW and serves as an inspiration for the BMW family. Throughout the series, we will hear the stories and advice from women leaders who have broken stereotypes and shattered glass ceilings. We created the #WomenofBMW series to highlight the progress of women in their roles throughout the automotive industry while motivating change going forward.
Name: Jan Collins
Division: Human Resources
Location: South Carolina
Q: In a few words, describe your role at BMW?
A: After 20 years in Physical Logistics at BMW Plant Spartanburg with responsibilities from managing Logistics Automated Warehouse Systems and Warehouses to major logistics migrations, I went back to my Human Resources roots in 2017. I took over responsibilities for Leadership and Professional Development Training, Leadership Culture Transformation and just recently transitioned to Human Resources Business Developer.
Q: What made you interested in working at the Spartanburg Plant?
A: I began my career at BMW as a contractor with a desire to be a part of the first luxury automotive manufacturer in the state of South Carolina. Simply put, I wanted to grow and be a part of the growth at BMW Plant Spartanburg. The fast pace, dynamic, quality focused environment really appealed to my strengths, in addition to the opportunity to work with some of the most talented people in the area.
Q: Your colleagues have described you as a natural and supportive leader, what leadership qualities do you feel are most important in the workplace?
A: My motto is “Be the Leader You Want to Be Led By”. It is important to me to be trustworthy, transparent, authentic, reliable and selfless in everything that you do. People will naturally gravitate towards you, collaborate with you and will follow your lead when you live these characteristics every day. I strive for this every day in my personal and professional life.
Q: What advice would you give to women pursuing a career in your field?
A: Anyone pursuing a leadership role in manufacturing or in a corporate environment, must have tough skin. This means to have self-confidence and to stand firm on your knowledge, experience and abilities when things are going well and during challenging times. It is important to focus on the development and growth of your associates in order to create a high performing team. You must love working with people and learn your teams’ strengths.
Q: What inspires you in the workplace and why?
A: The people I work with inspire me every day, because it is an opportunity to learn, collaborate, deal with conflict and grow as a leader. It really humbles me when people tell me that I have a positive impact on their personal development and career. This is the ultimate compliment.