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2023 Star Women in Grocery Award Winner Julie Filipuzzi (Q&A)

Senior-Level Star
 Julie Filipuzzi
Julie Filipuzzi

Julie Filipuzzi

Head of Customer Experience
Unilever Canada

What are some of your greatest career achievements? 

During my career, I’ve had the privilege to move around various supply chain roles, including planning, manufacturing, logistics and customer service. In addition, I supported strategic transformation projects, business integrations and exits. All of these roles and experiences were unique and challenging in different ways. They allowed me to further develop my supply chain experience, while also working closely with our cross-functional teams. My greatest career achievement is to be valued as a leader at Unilever Canada, playing a key part in delivering our strategy and developing talent and teams to secure our future legacies.  

What was your biggest career challenge? 

Mobility. I decided early on in my career, for personal reasons, that I was not able to relocate. I assumed this would be limiting for me in a global company, but I’m happy to say Unilever proved me wrong. Through open and honest development discussions, I was able to find opportunities within Canada that allowed me to continue to develop and grow my skills and competencies, while adding value in different roles and projects that have come my way.

What do you like best about your job? 

I have always enjoyed supply chain roles at the heart of the operation; there is something very satisfying about managing the day-to-day with tangible results in the end, while also working strategically to shape our future. In my current customer experience role, there are three things I enjoy most. First, being able to bring the external view internally to create win-win scenarios.  Second, I enjoy managing a team. I am proud of the work I have done in building talent and teams and find it most rewarding when team members are promoted or can voice their satisfaction with their development opportunities. Lastly, I truly enjoy the cross-functional nature of the role and specific partnership with my customer development colleagues. It is very satisfying to share in the delivery of results, as no one team ever wins alone.

What is the best advice you’ve ever received? 

First, never take a job you aren’t at least a little afraid of. Secondly, you don’t have to be perfect on your own to make progress; let people in to collaborate as the editing process delivers better results.  

Why is it important to you to mentor women?

My mom was my first example of a working woman, and she set high standards for me and my siblings about the importance of education and working and balancing a family. She seemed to do it all and I assumed I would too! Throughout my time at Unilever, I’ve had the privilege of working with very strong female leaders and it never even occurred to me that I would not have that opportunity. It is important to me to mentor women so it never occurs to them that they can’t have what they want. Women need to know they have a voice, and more importantly, how to use it... in all its productive, emotional, articulate, bright glory. It is important for me to teach women how to overcome our innate tendency to internalize issues and instead tackle business problems with the support of the teams around them.

What is your superpower? 

Communication. To be a friend to talk things through. To provide guidance or inspiration. To be loud and fun. To be welcoming and friendly.  

How do you spend your time outside of work? 

I enjoy spending time outdoors gardening, but I haven’t yet really developed a green thumb. I enjoy reading, shopping and the occasional binge-watching. Firefly Lane was the latest and absolute greatest.

Click here for the full list of 2023 Star Women in Grocery award winners.

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