I knew Shannon Chadwick was a calm person when I had to reschedule our interview…multiple times. From a teething baby to a giant snowstorm, many things were standing in my way of talking to Nature’s Path Production & Traffic Lead. Once we finally touched base, she was warm and positive, emitting calm and a sense of ease. Turns out those are the same qualities that keep her in high demand, both in her Nature’s Path position and on Whistler Mountain.
Are you from Vancouver originally?
Born and raised and in love with it. I like to stay active and be outside. The ocean is right there? The mountains are over there? I’m not leaving!
As someone currently snowed in, I don’t blame you. How long have you been at Nature’s Path?
Since 2002. Originally, I was attracted to it because it was really close to where I was living! Turns out, I really liked the job.
Tell us about what you do.
I started in production and my main job was to put the USDA logo on all of our packaging. Then we transferred pre-digital work into digital. Now we have two more people temporarily helping out and there are more production artists. I am showing them different things that we are doing. I am helping people get their jobs done. I have a new job title (since July) which has helped to narrow down what I do.
A new job title is exciting!
It’s scary, but it’s a good challenge.
How often do changes need to be made?
There is a massive overhaul coming! Other than that, it is almost daily that there are revisions. There might be a problem on the supply chain or there might be a problem getting a certain ingredient. They need to get a new [ingredient] that is still organic, but this may change the nutrition panel. One change can be huge because we sell in many different countries. One change on a package could be seven or eight packages requiring multiple revisions and approval to get everything done [on time].
Most people have no idea about this behind-the-scenes work!
I like solving problems! We were joking about nicknames in the office recently. I was called the “Digital Detective.” I like finding a problem with a file. Let me fix it!
Definitely high demand work. How did you get into it?
My dad owned a printing company. That was “our” job. We would go to work on weekends. We helped him out and I slowly made my way into the industry. We talk all the time about work and he is 87! He is retired, but still fascinated by changes in the industry. He started with letterpress and hot metal type and now it is all on computers.
How has working for Nature’s Path influenced your life?
I used to hate transit, but now I love it. I found out it was much more convenient and greener. The wear and tear on my car is much lower. I come from about an hour away, but now I download library books or watch a movie on my iPad. It’s my own personal time.
Tell us about your life outside of Nature’s Path.
I love to ski. I have been skiing since I was three and I was a ski instructor. Whistler became my community. I felt like I wanted to give back so I am now a mountain host. I take people around the mountain from around the world. We may also help out with injuries or lost kids. We found one little girl partway on the mountain. We also found a guy who had never been on a mountain before, from Chicago. I showed him how to snowplow properly. He was having a bad day! I know the mountain well enough that I can figure out a way. I can remain calm in those situations.
Who else would you want in your office — or on your mountain — than Shannon?