Project Manager for West Lake Food Corporation
Hi, my name is Vivian Yenson! I’m currently a Business Admin student, concentrating in Finance & Operations Supply Chain Management, and will graduate in Spring 2022. Currently, I work as a Project Manager at West Lake Food Corporation, an Asian food manufacturing company. Under the USA Canning branch, we produce canned broths- from chicken broth, veggie broth, and even a “Pho” broth, which makes cooking the delicious Vietnamese soup a breeze. Within the Tay Ho Food branch, we manufacture cold meats, pork meatloaf, beef balls found in soup, pate, and more.
In June 2020, I started as a Data Entry Clerk, entering in invoices from customers and reconciling vendor billing. This was my first experience with Quickbooks, but getting the opportunity to learn was incredibly eye-opening. Slowly, I became more advanced with the system and was finishing my work early, so I took on a project that wasn’t progressing.
The project was a Lunar New Year’s gift set for Chinese Sausages, which actually recently just launched! The initiative I took to go above and beyond my scope of duties impressed management and I was moved up to become a Project Manager. As a Project Manager, I handled the new product launches, managed inventory to keep up with production, and worked with vendors to coordinate shipment of raw goods. Since then, I’ve also taken on duties with heading a new branch of the company, Tay Ho Restaurant Group, as a Controller, managing all the funds going in and out.
Outside of part-time tutoring during high school and early college, this was my first job so I’ve learned and grown a lot since starting this past June. Being in Delta Sigma Pi also gave me the fundamentals to succeed in my professional career, which has helped further my growth with the company. As a Project Manager, you need to be able to lead a team, delegate, time-manage, take initiative, and problem-solve on your own accord sometimes.
For example, I was always able to keep my projects progressing because I knew how to follow-up with vendors and take initiative, since I had done it so many times during pledging. Within my first week of work, I created work email signatures for the entire office, which impressed my manager, but I was already doing that during my first semester of college and teaching my entire pledge class as Vice President of Professional Activities. Balancing school, work, and my involvements/extracurriculars definitely hasn’t been easy in these past 8 months, but I knew how to manage time and prioritize what was important to me.
For me, I’ve been incredibly lucky to say that I’ve definitely found my passion. Everyone says find a job you love and you’ll never work a day in your life. I honestly thought it wasn’t possible, but it really is true. I come home everyday, exhausted and drained from work, but after a good night’s sleep, I’m ready to do it all again the next morning. I’ve always been passionate about project management and finance, but also getting to combine it with my love of food is honestly a dream come true. To anyone uncertain about their current career path now, find something you’re actually passionate about, not just what will make the most money. Paying the bills is important, but you spend ⅓ of your life at work and if you’re doing it for the money, you’ll never get anywhere. Find a job you actually love and I promise you’ll be successful doing it.