Toyota Team Members Show Up in Full Force to Support World Games!

WG3eThis week the Special Olympics World Games are in Los Angeles and Toyota volunteers are making a big impact on this historic event. More than 500 team members are participating as official volunteers at the Los Angeles Convention Center and University of Southern California. Toyota has more official volunteers than any company sponsoring the World Games.

The World Games kicked off on Saturday with a star studded Opening Ceremony at the Los Angeles Coliseum. More than 100 Toyota team members who were signed up to volunteer during the Games participated as sign bearers carrying the signs of the nation’s participating in the Games during the Parade of Athletes.

Ron Donais from TFS sales planning led the Nippon/Japan delegation and said, “It was an incredible honor to walk with the Nippon WG2edelegation into the Coliseum, I can’t think of a greater honor for a Toyota team member. It will be an experience I never forget.”

Toyota executives and Mrs. Toyoda marched side by side with the Japan delegation and the athletes noticed. “The athletes were incredibly kind and generous.” Ron added, “One athlete even began to cry when he saw who was there to support him and his teammates – there was a moment of genuine excitement and happiness.”

Beginning Monday, team members reported to volunteer and rotated in and out over the next four days. Working in various roles, volunteers drove honored guests, managed volunteers, directed spectators and athletes, presented medals, and much more.

In addition to Southern California team members, TFS brought in a volunteer from each CSC and each region who were randomly selected from the pool of people in their location who registered FY15 volunteer hours in iCARE.

Jordon Dutton from TFSB said, “Being involved in the Special Olympics has been such a rewarding and humbling experience. Seeing these athletes overcome challenges to participate in this event, made me reflect on what I can do to improve not just mine but the lives of those around me whom I have the opportunity to serve.”

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Al Heredia from CSC-West described the experience as “Meaningful.” Al shared the following photo of a Team USA athlete with the quote, “Seeing the world unite looking into the eyes of true champion. Inspiring more than they’ll ever realize.

Today is the last official day for Toyota volunteers, but for many it won’t be the end of their Special Olympics experience. Many have expressed their enthusiasm for the movement and will be sharing the stories of the impact these incredible athletes have had on them for a long time.

 

Do you have a story from the World Games you would like to share? Please submit it to TFS_Community_Relations@toyota.com and you could be featured in an upcoming TFS in the Community article.

TFS Community Ambassador Role Helps Team Members Enhance Skills

2014 Community Ambassador Conference LA 1745 years ago it started with a bold idea and 9 team members in pilot locations across the US and today we have 45 Community Ambassadors in every TFS office including Puerto Rico.

The idea was simple, create an opportunity within each TFS office to become an advocate and liaison for social impact that not only gave team members a chance to give back to their community and spend time with some amazing kids, but also provided a differential investment opportunity.

The Ambassador program piloted in 2009 has provided over 102 TFS team members a chance to build important core skills and competencies such as communication, relationship building, project management, and leadership. In fact, over 90% of our current Ambassadors reported an increase in leadership skills through their participation in the program.

Today we are pleased to announce that in the first quarter of our new fiscal year, we already have 3 standing Community Ambassadors that have achieved a promotion.  They attribute their advancement in part to the skills they acquired in the role of Community Ambassador!

 

Leslie Rafter – Headquarters  Carson - Stephen White_Dream Car

Leslie has been with TFS for 6 years and a Community Ambassador since 2013. She has served as the SOX Sr. Analyst. Most recently, Leslie was promoted to a Band 4 SOX Manager.

According to Leslie, “The program has provided a great opportunity to not only make a positive impact in the community but to interact with fellow TFS team members in a new and fun way.  It has been a very rewarding experience to get to know the club members and be a part of their learning and planning process for college and beyond.”

 

Quinten Bennett- Baton Rouge 2014 Community Ambassador Conference LA

Quinten, better known as “Q”, has been a Community Ambassador since 2012. Q began his TFS career at Central Customer Service Center, transferred to the Kansas City Dealer Sales and Service Office (DSSO) where he served as a wholesale and credit analyst and most recently was promoted to the credit supervisor position in the Baton Rouge DSSO. He attributes the Community Ambassador role to helping lead to his promotion due in part to:

“Being an Ambassador allowed me to rub elbows with some higher ups and really get to see that they are just as “normal” as I am.  That encouraged me to continue to be myself and continue to focus on making myself better.”

 

Frances Rodriquez- Puerto Rico 2 FRANCES2

Frances has been with Toyota Credit Puerto Rico (TCPR) for 5 years. She started as a Summer Intern in 2010 and has served in different roles including registration clerk, inbound customer service and loss recovery agent. Frances became TCPR’s Community Ambassador in 2013. Most recently, Frances was promoted to Recovery Network and Vendor Program Analyst for TCPR.

In Frances’ words, “Having the opportunity of being TCPR’s ambassador for the past two years has been one of the most fulfilling experiences of my life. It not only helped me assist others, but it helped me grow as a professional and as a human being. I couldn’t feel more proud to work for a company that truly cares”.

 

Congratulations to all of the TFS Community Ambassadors that have been promoted while in the role and a huge THANK YOU to all of them for the outstanding impact they are having in their local communities!

 

TFS Teaches Boys & Girls Club Teens About Kaizen (continuous improvement)!

YOY KaizenOn June 26, 2015, Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) held their first ever Youth of the Year (YOY) Advanced Leaders Institute at Emory University in Atlanta Georgia. Over 90 state, regional, and military YOY winners came together for an intensive three day pre-collegiate experience and interactive leadership learning sessions.

The Toyota Financial Services Operational Excellence team helped provide the YOY winners with a true Kaizen experience, exposing the youth to the core foundational principles of Toyota: continuous improvement and respect for people.  The principle of continuous improvement or Kaizen includes establishing a long-term vision, working on challenges, continual innovation, and going to the source of the issue or problem.  Work processes are redesigned to eliminate waste through the process of continuous improvement.

YOY Kaizen 3

The youth participated in a hands-on simulation that involved packaging a variety of food products in an efficient manner, while learning about customer expectations. The exercise put the participants through three rounds of activity.  As the participants moved from one round to the next, they made improvements and eliminated waste. By the third round, the teams had increased their packaging time by an average of four minutes!  The teens were extremely engaged and learned principles they can apply to their own lives.

Best of all, 100% of the new packaged food products were donated to the Atlanta Community Food Bank to help families in need.

Toyota Financial Services and the Boys and Girls Club living the Toyota Way! YOY Kaizen 2