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Worth the wait

Worth the wait

By Todd Travis

Abby Travers knew she had the potential to move up in her career for a long time. She also knew that, for her, family was a priority – climbing the ladder could wait. After working in the deli area for Marsh for 30 years, she moved over to Kroger and continued to work in the same area she knew so well. She also knew that one day she would grow out of that role, knowing her true potential would blossom when she was ready.

“I always held myself back because of my children. I always wanted my kids to be grown and graduated, so I never really went into the management role at Marsh, even though I could have. It was the same at Kroger – I could have moved a little faster, but my family was more important,” said Travers.

After her youngest daughter had graduated, Travers felt like the time was right to take the next step in her career. From the moment she voiced her desire to go into management, she was put right into a training program and was promoted just four weeks later. But for Travers, it wasn’t just about climbing the corporate ladder – she saw it as an opportunity to help people.

“I love the people piece of it. I like the satisfaction of seeing people become successful and seeing them grow. It’s kinda like your family and seeing your kids grow. There’s a satisfaction for me when they do well,” explained Travers.

Travers poses with her award in front of the TWIG banner. (Submitted photos)

Before coming to the Kroger in Greenwood, Travers worked as the store manager in Martinsville, Ind. and was able to make her mark in serving that community. Her first recognition came when she was awarded the Zero Hunger Zero Waste award for the whole division as she helped to feed the hungry in the area.

Her next big achievement came when she was awarded the 2022 TWIG award, which stands for Top Women in Grocery. She was one of only 50 recipients of this award in the country. She was highlighted for her superior performance and specifically noted for these impressive reasons on the TWIG website:

  • Travers drove operational excellence with impactful merchandising displays that garnered multiple accolades, among them inclusion in the top 10 in several sales contests.
  • Her store grew identical sales by 7.4% versus the prior year; reduced shrink to 0.9%, which was a far better result than the district or division shrink percentages, and lowered wait time for pickup to four minutes, beating a previously set wait-time goal.
  • Travers donated food and volunteered at local food banks, dedicated resources to the local school district, raised funds for a store associate who was fighting cancer, and adopted a senior at a local nursing home.
Bridget Goldschmidt, Progressive Grocer managing editor presents the prestigious award to Travers.

“Abby established herself as an impressive leader well before the presentation of this award. She demonstrated a tremendous commitment to her team and to the community from her very first days in charge of a store. Abby is a role model for others in her field and someone I have admired since meeting her,” said Eric Halvorson, manager of Corporate Affairs at Kroger.

With all the success she has found, Travers shares the credit with her team.

“Getting the recognition isn’t just about me. The people that are working with me make me look good. Whatever my team needs, I try to help them, and they always try to help me with what I need. Being on vacation right now, I can actually say I miss my co-workers and I think that’s rare for most people,” Travers noted.

For more info about the TWIG award visit: topwomeningrocery.com.

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