Cummins Careers Culture Series - Volume 2

Cummins sponsors over 100 Employee Resource groups that help create the right environment for success at Cummins by promoting diversity, inclusion, and lending their unique perspectives to identify opportunities that can enhance our business success.

These groups are open to all employees and are organized around dimensions of diversity such as race, ethnicity, country of birth, gender, sexual orientation, as well as broader themes such as individuals with disabilities, veterans, and new employees. The groups also focus on providing important cultural and business environment information to ensure Cummins’ success.

This interview is the second in a series of one-on-ones with members of our Women’s Resource Group, located in Southern Indiana. Bilwa is a Senior Product Validation Engineer based out of Cummins' Corporate Headquarters in Columbus, Indiana (US).

Q:          How did you discover Cummins and ultimately begin your career here?

A:           My dad was a mechanical engineer at Cummins for over 17 years. Growing up, I witnessed firsthand how Cummins fosters an environment of innovation and technological leadership. I was inspired by Cummins and its ability to constantly push the envelope to develop an unmatched portfolio of products that were environmentally friendly, cost-effective, and were leaders in every market and every application. As a hands-on person, I envisioned a career in engineering to develop the next generation of products to advance our society & its technology.  Cummins was a natural fit for my career goals. With encouragement from my dad, I started at Cummins as an intern over 5 years ago, and now am involved in developing the latest engine technologies to power the next generation of transportation systems.
 

Q:          Elaborate on how Cummins has affected your career.

A:           Cummins provides the opportunity to advance my career through a variety of educational and professional development activities. Having tremendous interdisciplinary talent at the company has provided an opportunity to work with leaders in a variety of different fields of science and engineering. I find this has broadened my exposure to new ideas and given me a chance to learn new skills at an accelerated pace compared to similar roles at other companies. This is critical for fostering a successful career as an engineer, and I’m thankful for mentors that constantly aid in my development and exposure to the current state-of-the-art technology. 

Q:          How have you experienced Cummins’ core values in your experiences with the company?

A:           The support and mentorship that I receive from my peers have been tremendous for my own personal and professional development. The highly dynamic and supportive environment at Cummins brings out the best in people and allows employees to reach their full potential.   The mentors and peers that I worked with every day have imparted tremendous knowledge and exposed me to ideas and innovative ways of achieving goals.

Q:          Are you involved with any Employee Resource Groups? How have those groups empowered you at Cummins?

A:           I am involved with the Women’s Employee Resource Group, Cross-Country mentoring program, and the Cummins-Purdue mentoring program at Cummins. Cummins provides excellent platforms to connect with people across the company, both regionally and globally. We share the same values, motivate one another and contribute on various projects towards a common goal. I’ve received substantial support from these groups, which has enabled me to maintain a healthy work-life balance and ensures outstanding productivity in the workplace.

Q:          How have you experienced diversity, inclusion, and belonging in your role at Cummins?

A:           One key way that inclusivity is fostered and encouraged is through the creation of an environment that allows for a diversity of ideas and approaches to a particular task or project.  This enables us to expand our horizons for tackling difficult technical problems and come up with the best solutions for our customers. I have witnessed firsthand how ideas from different people and their diverse backgrounds can be used to develop the best possible solutions for many technical problems.

Q:          How has Cummins allowed you to live your values at work?

A:           The core values of the company; Integrity, Diversity & Inclusion, Caring, Excellence and Teamwork resonate heavily with the way I approach my career.  These are core values that allow us to become industry leaders and develop the best solutions for our customers. Cummins is continually reinforcing its core values on a constant basis by emphasizing these values in every interaction with colleagues and team members, stakeholders, suppliers, and customers.  

Q:          How do you balance your personal life and professional life through Cummins? Discuss how

you make it work.

A:           Cummins has great mentors and leaders that provide tremendous support professionally through their vast knowledge and experience in the industry. This has personally allowed me to achieve balance by easily getting the support and experience I need at work. The culture at Cummins of diversity and inclusion also allows me to function effectively across cross-functional teams. On a personal level, the leaders in my team are deeply involved in setting professional goals and project plans in order for employees to have a healthy balance between company objectives and personal life.

Q:          What about your role at Cummins sparks passion for you?

A:           My role at Cummins is very challenging; I work to develop the future of engine technology and deliver the best results for our customers. I realize that my work at Cummins has a much larger impact on society and the environment globally. Cummins brand recognition is highly reputable worldwide and I’m proud to be a part of the Cummins family that delivers the best products and leading technology year after year.

Q:          How has Cummins made you more passionate about technology and innovation?

A:           Cummins engines are recognized globally, and we’ve been a pioneer in delivering best in class products worldwide since the beginning of the industry. This has a pronounced impact on me and has made me more passionate about contributing by delivering innovative and environmentally friendly technologies.

 

Interested in learning more about life at Cummins or how you can make an impact? Check out careers.cummins.com, and check us out on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn, and Instagram.

Lauren Cole

Lauren is the Global Employer Brand Digital Communications Specialist for Cummins Inc, where she focuses on social media, employer branding, and digital media. Lauren joined the company in early 2017 and has a Bachelor of Science in Marketing from Indiana University. She currently resides in Columbus, IN.

Odaro Omusi Experiences Electrical Engineering Without Boundaries

Odaro Omusi, Electric Vehicle System Integration Specialist

The fluorescent light bounces off his plastic protective eyewear as he stands proudly on the shop floor, hands pocketed in his standard-issue Cummins jacket. The sprawling equipment and line of hybrid buses ready for maintenance seem to be calling to him. 

Odaro Omusi, Electric Vehicle System Integration Specialist, smiles like he's gazing fondly into the past. To be sure, he remembers the details vividly.

Odaro Omusi
Odaro Omusi, Electric Vehicle System Integration Specialist

"It's a place where, at any point in time, the lights might go out," Odaro says. 

Growing up in his hometown of Lagos, Nigeria's largest city and commercial hub, the lack of electrical infrastructure was always present. This context, paired with Omusi's interest in computers and engineering, became a catalyst for his curiosity. 

He remembers thinking, "I don't know how to fix the problems, but how can I be a part of trying to solve them?"


Odaro finds opportunities in education and beyond.

Odaro has no shortage of educational experience, to say the least. With two bachelor's degrees - one in electrical engineering and another in economics - plus a master's degree in electrical engineering, he quickly found an internship at Cummins.

"I really like working at Cummins because of the culture especially. I always got the sense that people actually cared about me trying to develop and grow."

This internship experience, he mentions, seemed to be different than his vision of what internships would include. Odaro definitely wasn't the stereotypical intern who grabbed coffee for coworkers. Instead, he was a key member of a helpful, diverse team.

"There's a huge emphasis on diversity at Cummins, which was really cool, just to see them be welcoming to everyone."

But Odaro wasn't just welcomed. He was constantly encouraged. He attended a "speed mentoring" event (think: speed dating but for professional development). Hosted by the Women's Employee Resource Grop, one of many employee resource groups at Cummins, the event led Odaro to meet his mentor, who in turn introduced him to a number of other team members. 

It was this collective effort from multiple mentors vested in Odaro's career growth that ultimately led him to his current role in the electrification space at Cummins. 


The future of electrified power looks bright.

After nearly five years at Cummins, Odaro is on the front lines of innovative change in the transportation industry, implementing new electric bus technology on a daily basis. And that's exactly where he wants to be.

"We could be talking about a complete revolution of transportation in the next few decades. Being part of that evolution is really exciting."

Odaro sees plenty of changes brewing in his future with Cummins, which excited him even more. The potential for growth, for innovation, for new possibilities in electrified power - there's a certain mystery about what's on the horizon. 

"It's growing and you're not sure exactly where it's going to go. But just the fact that it's growing is really exciting."

For Odaro, the great unknown is a fun place to explore.


What's so great about Cummins?

Looking back, Odaro remembers reading up on different companies when deciding where he wanted to apply. He had seen so many brochures, so many sheets of paper that seemed to promise the same bland experiences.

"The recruitment brochures from different companies all kind of look the same," he says. "As someone who's lived the Cummins experience, I can say that the experience does match what was talked about before I got here."

Whether it's the welcome culture, the hands-on experiences, or the thrill of taking part in an energy revolution, Odaro has never looked back. 

"At this point, you don't know where the ceiling is, and the bounds aren't fully known."


Want to work in electrification at Cummins? Explore our careers.

Lauren Cole

Lauren is the Global Employer Brand Digital Communications Specialist for Cummins Inc, where she focuses on social media, employer branding, and digital media. Lauren joined the company in early 2017 and has a Bachelor of Science in Marketing from Indiana University. She currently resides in Columbus, IN.

Mentoring Month: John Judd

As we close National Mentoring Month, we want to thank each Cummins employee who took the time to share their mentoring experiences with everyone, and the employees that mentor every day throughout the company. Thank you for your dedication to our Values of Caring, Teamwork, Diversity and Inclusion, Excellence, and Integrity. 

John Judd, Plant Manager – Rocky Mount Engine Plant (RMEP), closes out the month sharing his mentoring experiences over his 30-year career with Cummins.

Q: Were you mentored at Cummins?

A: Yes. My career at Cummins started when I was very young, and I know I would not be in the leadership position I am today without the guidance and advice of numerous mentors. My most impactful mentors were Ken Anderson, Executive Director – Components Supply Chain and Kevin Aker, former Executive Director – Global Manufacturing Engineering (retired in 2017). Had it not been for these mentors, I would not have finished school or been prepared to perform the duties associated with my current role.

John Judd and Ralph Emerson.jpg

Q: Do you mentor at Cummins?

A:  Yes, I have formally and informally mentored throughout my career. I mentor and coach young adults in our community and mentor employees at RMEP. Currently, I am mentoring three employees at RMEP.

 

Q: Is mentoring important, and how long should a mentorship last?

A: Mentoring is important to get an honest perspective of yourself and to have a person to exchange ideas with, other than your boss. A mentor relationship is probably one year, then it becomes coaching opportunities after that.

Lauren Cole

Lauren is the Global Employer Brand Digital Communications Specialist for Cummins Inc, where she focuses on social media, employer branding, and digital media. Lauren joined the company in early 2017 and has a Bachelor of Science in Marketing from Indiana University. She currently resides in Columbus, IN.

Mentoring Month: Chen Hua

We continue to celebrate National Mentoring Month by acknowledging some of the dedicated Cummins employees exemplifying the Values of Caring, Excellence, and Teamwork by mentoring fellow Cummins employees.

Chen Hua, General Manager of Beijing Foton Cummins Engine Company (BFCEC), is sharing his Cummins mentoring experiences.

Chen Hua_Portrait Photo.jpg

Q: Were you mentored at Cummins?

A: Yes, I had three formal mentors over my career path at Cummins. Tim Winterburn, David Moorehouse, and Mark Smith. I’ve been lucky enough to have these mentors to turn to for support at various stage of career. Being Chinese, I was finding it challenging to have cross-culture communications with my global peers and build trustworthy long-term relationships. Mark Smith invested time in me and worked to help me improve my internal and external communications and leadership skills at the corporate level. My mentors helped me gain crucial leadership insights into their thinking process and how they handle conflicts and situations.

I have also participated in several group mentoring programs that allow mentees to learn from each other and from other mentors. They’ve all been extremely generous with their time, their knowledge and willingness to help me find my way.

One employee engages a coworker in a mentoring session.
 

Q: Do you mentor at Cummins?

A:  Yes. Mentoring has played a huge role in my career growth, so I have taken my responsibility to mentor quite seriously. Each year I mentor five to eight high potential employees, who are at different stages of their career and am currently mentoring six employees.

As one of the sponsors of the gender diversity group, I have mentored several female employees. And am a member of the global leadership mentoring program, where I coach a number of high potential employees.

 

Q: Is mentoring important?

A: I believe mentoring is extremely important for everyone, whether it be formal or informal, mentor-mentee or a peer-to-peer. In my experience, mentoring is a fantastic way to gain insight into where your career may lead. Strong relationships with my mentors have helped me challenge myself, improve and grow. I want to lead others the way my mentors led me. I want to teach and help people grow, just as my mentors taught and helped me.

 

Lauren Cole

Lauren is the Global Employer Brand Digital Communications Specialist for Cummins Inc, where she focuses on social media, employer branding, and digital media. Lauren joined the company in early 2017 and has a Bachelor of Science in Marketing from Indiana University. She currently resides in Columbus, IN.

Mentoring Month: Anne McLaren

January is National Mentoring Month, dedicated to raising the awareness of the need for mentors and recognizing the work mentors have done in the lives of others. 

Many people think mentoring is an adult helping to guide the future of our youth. While that is a common practice of mentoring, professional mentors are equally important. In fact, Cummins was built on mentoring, as William Irwin mentored his great-nephew, J. Irwin Miller, who would later usher Cummins into where it is today.

In honor of National Mentoring Month, Anne E. McLaren, Technical Advisor – Reliability Engineer, is sharing her Cummins mentoring experiences.

Anne McLaren
Anne McLaren

Q: Who mentored you at Cummins?

A: I have had two formal mentors at Cummins over the years. Mike Sharp was a technical mentor to me for the first five years of my career, and Cheryl Klepser has mentored me for most of the 15.5 years I’ve been with Cummins. I have also participated in a number of group-mentoring programs that allow mentees to learn from each other and from other mentors.

 

Q: Have you mentored anyone at Cummins?

A:  I have informally mentored hundreds of people at Cummins and formally mentored dozens. As the global corporate discipline leader for reliability engineering, I am the functional manager for all reliability engineers around the globe. I have formally and informally mentored some of them.  Each summer, I formally mentor interns through several employee resource groups, university recruiting, or functional programs. I am also a leader in the diversity and inclusion space and mentor participants through those groups. I have also served as a mentor in a number of the speed mentoring events, where you have short sessions of mentoring multiple people in a one-time event. Lastly, I help to organize programs for peer mentoring and group mentoring.

 

Q: Is mentoring important?

A: I believe mentoring is extremely important for everyone, whether it be formal or informal, mentor-mentee or a peer-to-peer. The guidance sought can be specific to a functional job assignment, or it can be less tactical and more strategic in terms of how to be more effective in a current role or to seek career guidance for a future role. A mentoring relationship should be built on trust, which will take time to establish. Both the mentor and the mentee should feel comfortable sharing and have the mentee’s best interests at heart.

Interested in learning more about life at Cummins or how you can make an impact? Check out careers.cummins.com and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram

 

Lauren Cole

Lauren is the Global Employer Brand Digital Communications Specialist for Cummins Inc, where she focuses on social media, employer branding, and digital media. Lauren joined the company in early 2017 and has a Bachelor of Science in Marketing from Indiana University. She currently resides in Columbus, IN.

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