John Deeres LiPing Zhao explains her work for John Deere

John Deere's LiPing Zhao explains her work for John Deere

 July 18, 2022

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LiPing Zhao is the kind of woman who is resilient, positive, and open to new things. She always tries to use flexible ways to gain supporters and to make things happen. She tries to step into other people’s shoes, thinking in a logical way, and winning trust. She always tries to maintain a very 'can do' attitude.

Meet LiPing Zhao. She works for John Deere, a world leader in providing advanced products, technology and services for customers whose work is revolutionizing agriculture and construction — those who cultivate, harvest, transform, enrich and build upon the land to meet the world's increasing need for food, fuel, shelter and infrastructure. Her job title is Manager, Operations at John Deere Tianjin Construction Works.

LiPing first started her job at John Deere as a Welding Manufacturing Engineer. She then worked as a weld ME supervisor, then a Business Unit Manager for fabrication, and then as a Quality Manager, and an Operations Manager.

"My job is to run the factory, which means being responsible and accountable for safety, quality and efficiency of the factory operations, cover manufacturing engineering and production with group size above 200 people, including welding, machining, painting and assembly for excavator, wheel loader and backhoe loader, also maintenance for all factory facilities and equipment," explains LiPing. "I lead the manufacturing-related new products with different model’s introduction activities, while improving operational performance at a much higher production rate, and I make sure that new product successfully launches for limited production and ramp-up."

Working on challenging projects

LiPing’s favorite project for John Deere has also been her most challenging project.

“When I was Operations Manager, I simultaneously also became Capacity Expansion Project manager from June 2019 to December 2020, which included new expansion building construction, and manufacturing process setup, layout optimization and execution," explains LiPing. 

The project involved a 15,000 square meter new expansion building construction, with LiPing working with a general contractor, consultant company, supervision company, and Design Institute to make sure construction progressed as per schedule, with quality and within budget. It also involved manufacturing process implementation, leading the planning, development and execution for fabrication relocation, kitting warehouse relocation, cab assembly relocation, wheel loader assembly line relocation, excavator assembly line extension, and also creating a future capacity expansion plan through the years.

Further responsibilities in this role for LiPing included facility and utility setup, including machining center installation, hoist installation, weld fume system installation, utility drops, tooling, tools, lifting device, material flow setup, and layout optimization.

“This project required effective communication internally and outside with suppliers, detailed plan and execution on time with many small projects, and multiple department collaboration,” says LiPing.  “We had a very challenging schedule, but finally all projects were completed without a single safety incident, and the teams were all engaged together, which is why it was my favorite project.”

An inclusive workplace culture 

LiPing heralds John Deere's inclusive culture, saying it enables her to keep growing with the company. “The inclusive culture at John Deere enables me to keep growing with the company, and helps me demonstrate my best, and have opportunity to bring positive influence on other colleagues."

LiPing suggests that to get more women into roles like hers, companies need to provide a good range of relevant opportunities for potential female employees, and that they must purposely understand women's interests, pressure status, learning tendencies, motivations and passions - and then they must create an attractive work environment for women employees."

Advice for women looking to work for John Deere

Sharing her advice for women who may be looking to work for John Deere, LiPing suggests that as women, we can bring changes, influence, insight, light, and inspiration. We can do what we want to do to make a difference - and we can leverage our empathy and sentimental perception as we build good alignments. We're encouraged by other female leaders, and so we should continue to connected and link with further women to support them.”

Enjoying downtime outside of work 

When not working, LiPing dedicates time to her hobbies.

"I read at least one hour a day. I run 6km daily. I play badminton weekly. I take care of flowers planted at my apartment, while sometimes watching movies or coloring sketches. I used to travel to see the world pre COVID-19, now I'm looking forward to a coming trip.”

Join John Deere and enjoy a varied career

Looking to embark on a new career in the agricultural industry? 

John Deere has an inclusive and supportive workplace culture. 

Search John Deere's latest career opportunities and join them. 


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