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2020 Star Women in Grocery winner Katherine McDonald (Q&A)

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Store level star

Katherine McDonald
Store Manager
Food Basics
Metro Inc.

What is your proudest moment?
My proudest career moment was becoming a store manager in 2017. I started with the company 24 years ago as a part-time cashier, and have held several roles through the years. Becoming a store manager was a goal I set out to achieve early in my career. I feel like it is a stepping stone to move on to other positions in the company when the time is right. Another proud moment was in 2018, when my store in Midland, Ontario won Metro’s Q4 Customer Promises Award. I’ve always been customer-service-oriented, so I was very proud of this recognition.

What are your greatest career achievements?
Over the years, I’ve played a big role in opening nearly 20 stores throughout Ontario, overseeing employee hiring and training on the front end. When Food Basics rolled out a new payroll system in 2017, I played an active role as a trainer for eight stores. This involved training our bookkeepers on the new system and helping stores through the transition over a six-week period, which was a big achievement. I’m also really involved with the community. My store’s Toonies for Tummies is always a great success, contributing thousands of dollars to local school nutrition programs.

What do you like most about your job?
I enjoy the opportunity to be a leader—training and teaching a team of people how to excel in their roles. I have strong instincts when it comes to my team and will move employees from one department to another to help not only achieve store results, but also for the individual to maximize their own potential.

What is your leadership style?
My leadership style is to lead by example: Do as you would want others to do. Being someone who started at the bottom, and has the opportunities that I have, I feel I am a great example of what hard work and dedication can achieve.

What is your best quality?
I believe my best quality is that I am a people person. I enjoy developing lasting relationships with employees and customers. I have developed great relationships within the community through local donations and fundraising opportunities. I genuinely appreciate all my staff and enjoy getting to know them as well as their families in our community.

What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
The best advice I ever received is to not forget that at one time you were a new employee and new employees may not understand terms and preferences we use in this business. Always explain everything you need to say as thoroughly as possible.

Anything else you’d like to add?
I am flattered to be recognized as a rising star in the grocery industry. Balancing family life and a career at times can be challenging. With hard work and dedication and a great support system in both areas, it has made it possible to succeed both at home and at work.

Click here for the full list of 2020 Star Women in Grocery award winners.

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