Women at the Wheel 2022: Ashlee Church
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2022 Honoree

Ashlee Church

General Manager
Volkswagen of Marion

What is one of your proudest accomplishments of your career?

In 2014, I became the first employee of Volkswagen of Marion, which provided me with the unique opportunity to build a store from the ground up. I’m most proud of our store’s culture and the team we’ve built. I believe that no department is more important than another and we recognize that each individual team member contributes to our collective success.

 

In what do you credit your success and/or what do you think makes you stand apart from your peers?

I take a unique approach to team building and intentionally target new hires without industry experience, which allows me to focus on growing and developing our team internally. This has allowed me to build a team with a higher-than-average percentage of women and minorities, and 80% of our team members are millennial or Generation Z — including 100% of our sales reps and technicians. This has created an environment where we are able to adopt and implement more progressive strategies since our team is not bound by doing things the way they’ve always been done.

 

What tools do you use to help you grow in the industry?

I consider myself a lifetime learner. Our industry changes rapidly, so there’s always room for growth. Education comes in many forms — from formal training to personal connections. I always want to be learning.

 

What is your best advice to other women who want to excel in the automotive industry?

Don’t be afraid to build your own culture and lean into what makes you different. You’re not bound by doing things the way they’ve always been done. To create a unique culture, you must be willing to be authentic to yourself and what’s important to you. I’m proud to say that we’re #NotLikeTheOtherGuys.

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