CW Mag gets up close and personal with multi-talented dynamo, Regional VP, SoCal, Tina Roberts who leads by example and isn’t afraid to put on a chicken suit.
Why this line of work.
“Like so many, I got into the food industry by mistake. One of the aspects that I love is that this industry is recession-proof. People need to eat. If you have a passion and talent, it is a major plus. I think I have the best job in the company because I get to choose who I work with every day. I take my work very seriously but I’m also a bit of a goof. I have no problem dressing up in a chicken outfit. I wear a lot of costumes. I try to make people laugh. Do a skit. Play a game. You have to be authentic. I am a straight shooter. I don’t play a lot of games. I don’t want my team to have to guess where there stand. I don’t want to have to guess where I stand.”
“The speed of the leader is the speed of the game.”
What is the key to your success?
“I’ve had amazing mentors. You have to be coachable. I ask what could I have done better? I’ve always demanded a seat at the table. I don’t wait for an invite. I say ‘Hey I want to be in that group.’ ‘I want to run that!’ Both my parents never said I couldn’t do anything. They always said, ‘If you want it. You can do it.’ I grew up hunting and fishing in Idaho. We didn’t have fences. Fences are something for me that I think, ‘Oh we can just go around, or through.’”
Something hardly anyone knows about you.
“I’m currently working on my pilot’s license to fly and in the next 30 days I will be certified for Submarine Piloting. My husband and I own a submarine. That is my goal: to have the deepest solo dive for a woman in the ocean.”
How do you inspire?
“You have to be up. My energy is so reflected in my team. So you have to be on. You have to be excited and passionate. I believe in debate. I tell my team be my solution not my problem. Find the solution. My team likes to say about a problem, ‘this is how we eat our young.”
What do you look for in your team?
“You have to have some swagger, confidence, and passion. I don’t want people to match me, but I want their energy to match mine in their own unique way. Everybody’s an ingredient.”
Something you love outside of CW.
“I love to scuba dive. In sales, everyone wants something from you and you are always on the go. When you dive, everything is quiet. I love the bubbles and the stillness. It is my peaceful place.”
Advice to women on the career success trajectory.
“I never think about being a woman. I walk in the room as a person. I have these attributes, skills, tools etc. I don’t gender set. As long as you always bring value the rest doesn’t matter. The question of power is not about being a woman or not, it is only ever about power. I owned a meat company with 80 men working for me. I had to be of that skill set to handle the job. I wasn’t, and am still not afraid to load a truck or sweep floors. I am not above anything to get the job done right.”