Patriot Profile: Felecia Sampson

Leading by example is a phrase that can be thrown around too easily in a labor-intensive industry. Often it is applied to someone who works hard and does a great job but avoids verbal leadership with associates. 
If Forklift Lead Felecia Sampson at our Seaonus Cold Storage facility in Jacksonville, Florida, only led by example, her work would be a perfect template to follow for doing the job right. However, Felecia loves to share her voice to make an associate’s day easier and ensure every job is completed correctly. Her combination of optimism and perfectionism makes her an ideal leader in the facility.

Leading The Way

Felecia is easily recognizable on the dock. Besides being one of the only females who work at the facility, she stands only about five feet tall and is often spotted by her bright red lipstick, an ear-to-ear smile, and a distinctive deer head hat she wears to stay warm. Despite being small in stature, Felecia is large in presence and personality. Her experience and perfectionism set a tone for how things are to be done.

Felecia has been driving a forklift for 30 years. She does things fast and does things correctly. Before coming to Seaonus, Felecia worked for a large supplier. When they moved operations, she came to work for us. Within one month of starting here, we offered her the lead position. Felecia’s abilities are immediately recognizable.

As a lead, Felecia balances her focus on the specific task she performs and observes how her team is operating. Suppose she needs to correct someone or show them how to execute their objective more efficiently or safely. In that case, she does it as quickly as she whips her forklift around the warehouse fulfilling orders, with her example speaking as loudly as her words.

“Whenever I’m here,” Felecia says, “I’m thinking about how to make sure my team and I are doing a good job. I want to give 110% from the time I come in and start working to the time I’m finished. I’m trying to meet the requirements my boss expects out of me, and I make sure myself and my team know what the operations manager, supervisor, and shipping people need for us to be successful on a daily basis.”

Felecia has a very high standard for herself and her team in turn. This may make her seem rigid or overbearing, but nothing could be further from the truth. She never forgets to have fun. Felecia knows happy people work harder and are more focused, so she makes sure to keep an eye on her team’s emotions as well.

“I love raising the spirits of my team,” she said. “I talk to them a lot. I tell them it’s harder to be upset than it is to be happy. I relate to them. Everybody has issues. Everybody doesn’t feel their best every day. I tell them I don’t feel my best every day, but I make sure to perform my best every day. They appreciate my concern and leave the conversation with a big smile. Being positive goes a long way.”

A Complete Team Member

It’s hard to be around Felecia without feeling her positive energy. It’s one of the many ways she leads so effectively around the facility. Felecia is such a complete team member: experienced, dedicated, focused, and always doing the right thing. She is a masterful forklift driver, detail-driven, and a great person to boot. With so many great traits, it’s no wonder why she stands out at Seaonus Cold Storage for more than her deer head hat.

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