Amy Wolbeck on the strength of a team, innovation in the manufacturing field, and setting boundaries to maintain well-being has been saved
Life at Deloitte
Amy Wolbeck on the strength of a team, innovation in the manufacturing field, and setting boundaries to maintain well-being
Deloitte is proud to introduce the next profile in our series of women in the manufacturing industry. By highlighting the stories of women in manufacturing, we hope to help facilitate meaningful conversations, create connections, and showcase the myriad of opportunities available to enter and thrive in the manufacturing industry.
Amy Wolbeck is a managing director in Deloitte Consulting LLP’s Enterprise Performance practice, specializing in serving clients in the Industrial Products & Construction industry. She has over 24 years of experience in consulting and is an advocate for well-being, diversity, equity, and inclusion in the manufacturing industry.
The power of being on a team
Amy grew up in a farming community of 1700 people about 4 hours north of Minneapolis. She graduated in a class of 47, with the highlight of her high school days being her involvement on the basketball, volleyball, and track teams. Wolbeck went on to play volleyball at the collegiate-level and graduated from North Dakota State University.
“I played sports my whole life, and I think I learned more through that than any of the classes or books I read,” she says. “Playing sports taught me how to play a role on a team, which I have carried into my everyday work.”
Shifting from being a high school varsity volleyball player to a college freshman surrounded by star athletes, Wolbeck realized the importance of every role on a team and the power it takes to work together for the greater good.
“Sometimes you are the specialist on the team and other times you find yourself the sixth person on the bench, finding opportunities beyond playing to deliver value,” Amy explains. “Everyone learns how to work together as a cohesive team, and it’s a really powerful thing.”
Wolbeck’s career highlights center around monumental moments and successes with her teams at Deloitte. As a leader, she has grown to bring more of her authentic self to work every day. “Being a female in manufacturing, I used to think I needed to act like a man to get respect,” Wolbeck said. “As I’ve grown to understand the value of being your authentic self, I have changed. Now I mentor other women to do the same. My presence has changed over time and it has been an evolution.”
Wolbeck believes in the golden rule of leading others - to lead in a way that you would like to be led. She explains that she never asks her team members to do anything that she is not willing to do herself. And expands on this belief by sharing two qualities she believes are key to being a great leader: honesty and active listening. She adds that it is vital to lead with passion and to build trust within teams.
Deloitte Services LP
Manufacturing on the cusp of innovation and inclusion
Amy shares that when she thinks of manufacturing, she is taken back to the heartland where she grew up. She lived in a farming community where her neighbors relied on certain equipment for their day-to-day activities.
She began her career at Deloitte in the automotive and aerospace and defense sectors, but during her second engagement at an aerospace and defense client, she recognized the value of her industry experience.
“I had the aerospace and SAP intersection of knowledge, which I realized was my true value and home at Deloitte,” Wolbeck states. “It’s so important to understand the value and passion that you bring."
If you think about it, manufacturing is the heart and soul of everything.
Wolbeck reveals her dedication to the industry over the years has stemmed from the challenges and change of pace that each client engagement brings.
“I know at Deloitte, we have been thinking a lot about that [the future of manufacturing] and how it will change,” she states. “Given the current challenges throughout the pandemic, such as supply shortages, companies recognize the need to innovate. We’re on the verge of significant innovation and criticality of diversity, equity, and inclusion.”
When asked the one piece of advice she would give her younger self, Amy advises women in manufacturing to not be afraid to take on new opportunities and challenges. She observes that for many women there is a tendency to focus on what you don’t know or don’t do. Wolbeck encourages women to “take a seat at the table” and understand their worth.
“Companies with diverse leadership often make more top and bottom-line improvements,” Wolbeck states. “Beyond that, with the evolution of everything happening, women bring some interesting and unique ideas. Manufacturing is on the cusp of this change and innovative platform, and women contribute a huge amount of buying power.”
Setting boundaries to maintain well-being
Physical fitness has remained vital to Wolbeck’s life and well-being. She shares that she still works out every morning – mixing up weightlifting and cardio with new challenges, like an adult tumbling class she took up during the pandemic. In fact, Amy shares that she went five years without missing a single day of working out and emphasizes the importance of setting and honoring boundaries to maintain one’s well-being.
“My morning workout time is sacred,” Wolbeck admits. “If something comes up, I don’t say ‘no’, but I give other suggestions to protect that time.”
Wolbeck adds that she sets boundaries in her professional and personal life. Her family and friends know she works hard, and they respect and understand that. She encourages others to think about what is most important to them and to honor it.
Beyond setting boundaries, Amy coaches those beginning their careers to ask questions. “Asking for help doesn’t show failure or inability,” she says. “It was learning how to leverage the people around me to really help me which has made me a better person.”
Being a woman in manufacturing
Wolbeck recently attended a Women in Manufacturing (WiM) conference on behalf of Deloitte, where she was able to meet many females leading the industry into the future. She is proud that Deloitte, alongside many other companies, is working with WiM to establish programming and training, and building a community for women in the manufacturing industry. Additionally, she is excited to see manufacturing companies coming together to further innovation and share ideas.
Amy leads at Deloitte by bringing her authentic self to work every day and emphasizing inclusivity across all levels. She credits her unrelenting passion and drive to the evolving future of manufacturing and the new challenges she faces each day.
Amy Wolbeck: The lightning round
Describing herself in three words: Honest, loyal, and leader
Favorite food or drink: Sushi
Favorite place to travel: South Africa
One thing on her bucket list: Traveling to Antarctica – she looks forward to taking her mother there later this year
Women in Manufacturing
Women at Deloitte
Featuring women in the energy and manufacturing sectors
Celebrating women in manufacturing
Stories of some of our most successful female leaders