Inspire Inclusion Interviews: Cheri Vander Moren
Alexa Bradbury

3 minutes

Inspire Inclusion Interviews: Cheri Vander Moren

Tell us a little bit about yourself 

My name is Cheri Vander Moren and I'm a Grand Rapids native. I've lived in the community of Ada in Michigan most of my life. I’ve worked for Amway for 13 years at their world headquarters, which is located in my hometown. 

I never really thought growing up that I would work at the major company in my hometown. But here I am, and I love it!  

During my career at Amway, I've worked as a project manager in new product development and as a strategist in supply chain and marketing. I have also led global program launches and now I work in our indirect procurement team, and I oversee our US contingent labor program. 

What is your proudest achievement? 

I would say my proudest achievement has been launching a global initiative to modernize our business that will meet the needs of our next generation, for distributors and consumers alike. 

This initiative was challenging because it required us to set a long-term vision across many aspects of our business and strongly challenge the status quo. Sometimes it felt like pushing a rock up a hill, but looking back over the last few years and seeing the transformation we have made across the business that leads back to that initiative, I’m proud of that work.

This year the theme of IWD is #InspireInclusion. What does this mean to you? 

To me, #InspireInclusion means creating a culture where everyone’s voice is valued and respected, and everyone is empowered to contribute their unique perspectives and talents.  

It means embracing change, questioning the norm, and challenging ourselves to learn from others who are different from us and to embrace new ideas and opportunities.  

Which women inspire you the most?  

I've been fortunate to have so many amazing women support me in my career. From my early years as a college intern in the banking industry to navigating my career here at Amway, I've always been inspired by women who are bold and unwavering in their approach, and who always take the high road. 

Just seeing so many strong women in the companies I've worked at is what inspires me to continue and to bring my best every day. 

What is the most valuable piece of advice that you could give other women? 

My advice is that you are your best advocate.  

You also need to intentionally build relationships with others who will be in your corner, but you are the number one advocate for yourself. 

What do you think the biggest barrier is for women in your industry 

I don't know that this is specific to my sector, but we as women juggle a lot - being in the workforce, especially as mothers and sometimes as primary caregivers to our children as well. In addition, many times we are also the breadwinner in the family. As women become more successful, we wear all of those hats at once. 

I also think that a barrier women face is their voice sometimes isn't given the same weight as their male counterparts. Yet the female voice comes with such a breadth of experience. By wearing all these hats and juggling so many things at the same time, we have this breadth of experience to bring when we weigh into discussions in the workplace. 

So, I think when our voices aren’t given the same weight despite all that experience that we are bringing, it is a barrier for both women and companies. 

Have you faced any barriers in your career, if so, how did you overcome them? 

I have definitely faced barriers in my career. For me, I have a very clear understanding of what I want to look back on in my life and be remembered for. Finding that healthy balance between my work life, my home life and my community life is a key challenge that I face. 

I know what I'm looking for out of my career but looking into how that fits into me as a whole person - whether that has been advocating for working part time, job sharing or coming back into a full-time capacity - is a barrier. 

It's definitely a unique challenge and I think that women face this barrier more frequently than men when thinking about the fluidness of their career. 

How does Amway promote inclusion in the workplace? 

Amway is very intentional in promoting inclusion. Our company offers many inclusion networks with one of them specifically promoting inclusion for women. 

What I love about the women's inclusion network is that it doesn't only include women in the network. Originally, the network was primarily women, but now there are many men in the network who are advocates for women in the workforce. 

Through inclusion networks like the women's inclusion network, we talk about topics that are pertinent to women succeeding in the workplace and invite both genders into that conversation to really understand what the barriers are and solve those challenges together.  

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