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Liberty University

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Liberty University

CONCORD, N.C. -- More than 600 team members work at Hendrick Motorsports, and each of them has a unique role that helps contribute to success on the racetrack.

In this series, will take an in-depth look at how team members execute those jobs on a daily basis, detailing their workspaces, routines and more.

This time, process engineer Megan Horn shares "How I Work."

Microsoft Surface Surface Book

Current mobile device:
iPhone 8+

One word that best describes how you work:
“Inclusively. I am nothing without the people that I work with. When asked to help identify improvements in a specific area, I do four things in a particular order. One, give the people who do the work an opportunity to share their ideas. Two, give the people who are affected by the work an opportunity to share their ideas. Three, observe and validate that feedback by getting hands-on with the process. Four, assemble a diverse team to come up with and be a champion of solutions.”

Take us through a recent workday:
“I am not very exciting when it comes to routines compared to many of my coworkers on campus. My husband and I do not have any kids of our own yet, so we currently live for ourselves and our families. For me, my daily routine is eat, sleep, work, repeat. That sounds really monotonous, but my experience here at Hendrick Motorsports has been pretty fulfilling and I am having a lot of fun. The only ritual I really have is drinking an Advocare Spark when I get to work in the morning. It’s my form of coffee. Good luck trying to have a conversation with me before I have my morning Spark! When I get to work every morning, I check my emails, view my Leankit Board to see what tasks I will be working on and jump right on in. On any given day, I could be doing anything from building a custom console app to automate information flow, developing new data visualizations for the pit department, facilitating problem solving activities as a result of some race weekend occurrences, building relationships and trust with the people I work with and around, as well as seeking some professional development opportunities to keep myself on the front end of change management techniques and leadership.”

Apps/gadgets/tools you can’t live without:
“Leankit and PowerBI. Leankit is a type of productivity tool we use across campus to enable visibility into project management, manufacturing operations and also resource allocation. PowerBI is a visualization tool that allows you to pretty easily generate valuable insights from the data that is collected from on-premises operations as well as race-weekend performance.” 

Workspace setup:
“I have a standing/sitting desk with two monitors that enable me to work efficiently. I use my Microsoft Surface Book when I am mobile across campus throughout the day.”

How you keep track of what you have to do:
“I have a personal Leankit board to manage my ongoing projects. It’s a little more in-depth than a to-do/doing/done workflow, but that is the general idea.”

How do you tackle new challenges that arise:
“I try to take a systematic approach to all challenges and problems. Without this structure, and thoroughly working through each step, you’re really just throwing darts at the wall and hoping one sticks. Darts will stick on occasion, but you won’t be able to replicate what it was that made you successful because the result was not on purpose.”

Take us through an unusual/interesting process you have dealt with:
“One specific example that comes to mind pertains to a work area on campus that was perceived to be unable to keep up with its workload. It is human nature to want to address this problem with more people and more machines, which was initially proposed as a solution. We were given the opportunity to approach the scenario differently than we probably would have in the past – and that was utilizing the four steps I made reference to earlier. Through this approach, we learned that the department did not have a resource problem. The parts being ordered had been given the same due date as the date that they were created, which is physically impossible given the manufacturing process. We provided a solution to that, as well as supplemented it with some visualization and scheduling tools. Once we blitzed our way back to a clean baseline, the perceived issue had essentially disappeared and has been maintained for more than a year. Even when work volume is at its highest, that group of teammates has continued to meet or exceed our ever-changing production needs.” 

How you got your start at Hendrick Motorsports:
“I grew up watching my sister race go-karts. We spent every weekend at a track somewhere in Ohio, mostly our local track in Columbiana. I was never interested in driving, however, I thoroughly enjoyed the scorekeeping aspect of the sport. I worked in the tower manually scoring the races and organizing lineups for the heats and features. My sport was golf, and to this day I still enjoy and am relatively good at playing. I went to the University of Toledo for industrial engineering, and in May 2009 I graduated and went to work for Norfolk Southern Railroad. I was hired into their management trainee program, supervising skilled tradespeople in their locomotive and car repair facilities in my first two years. I was promoted out of that program into a role that aligned with my industrial engineering degree as an engineer of lean production systems. I held that role for three years before being made aware of a position that was open at Hendrick Motorsports. My family had previously made their way down to Concord, North Carolina, and I always loved the area. I thought it was a great opportunity to take my skillset and apply it to a unique industry, while also being close to my family. I applied, interviewed, and was hired into the engine shop in a brand-new role that was called process engineer. I just celebrated my five-year anniversary with Hendrick Motorsports, and looking back have a number of accomplishments that I am proud of.”

Best advice you have ever received:
“I don’t know if you can call it advice, per se, however the quote ‘If you love what you do, you will never work a day in your life’ rings true. When I stop having fun, I really need to re-evaluate what I am doing – especially with my eat, sleep, work, repeat routine!” 

Mentor or influential person in your life:
“My Dad. Unfortunately, I probably didn’t realize this in his life, but in his passing, it’s become incredibly obvious how much of an influence he had on me in the 33 years we had together. I am my father’s daughter in many aspects. However, I know that I have his personality. I can acknowledge now that it is one of the most important traits that contributes to my success professionally, and none of that was without the love and support from my mom as well.”

Favorite thing about working at Hendrick Motorsports:
"The people, by far.” 

Something people may not know about working for a race team:
“Hendrick Motorsports manufactures or fabricates approximately 85 percent of the components that are assembled on a race car every weekend.”

Music you listen to while you work:
“I have four staples. ‘The Heat,’ ‘SiriusXM Fly,’ ‘The Highway,’ and ‘Hits 1.’”

Who else you would like to see answer these questions:
“There are a number of people on campus who have had a diverse career path at Hendrick Motorsports that has led them to where they are today, which is intriguing to me. I think it would be interesting to check in with (director of human performance) Andy Papathanassiou to give others visibility into his role on the human performance side of the business. There is so much more to the pit department than what you see on TV.”