To follow up our sponsorship of the WoMENAIT event and to celebrate women's history month, we're putting the spotlight on some of FUTEK's talented female team members. This week we're profiling Maria SanFilippo, Quality Manager and one of FUTEK's most important leaders.
If you know anything about FUTEK, you know that, here, QC does not stand for "quality control" but "quality culture". Our commitment to quality runs through every aspect of our business, from the moment when the idea for a product is conceived until after it leaves our premises and functions flawlessly many years to come. One of the key people building and continuously evolving FUTEK's unique quality mindset and processes is Maria SanFilippo.
I grew up in Barranquilla, Colombia. Barranquilla is Colombia's fourth-most populous city and its economy is concentrated mainly in the manufacturing, commerce and services Industries. I completed my bachelor's degree in Industrial Engineering there, and started working for the manufacturing sector, in the quality field right after I graduated. Since my early childhood I traveled frequently with my parents and came to the US often since many of my relatives had migrated here many years before to look for better opportunities. During my travels, I felt captivated by this country and decided to move permanently about 16 years ago. My decision to move to the US was mainly driven by my search for personal and professional growth.
Everything related to science and manufacturing interests me. In the beginning of my career, I didn't have a particular interest in tech, but that changed when I started at FUTEK 10 years ago. Now I find it fascinating.
When I was in middle school I was always more interested in math than in any other subject. I really enjoyed solving math problems and the structure and logic it involves. Also, personality wise, I think engineering fits me well since I am very logical and structured and apply a lot of critical thinking. I also enjoyed science. I decided to study engineering during my last year in high school and started pursuing my degree at the Universidad Del Norte as soon as I graduated.
It started when I was in university. I had an excellent professor in quality control and he would always talk about how quality control relies on statistics similarly to baseball (I am a baseball fan). He would teach the subjects in his classes using baseball analogies.
It means a continuous search for excellence to provide confidence that the requirements and expectations of the product and/or market are met.
I prepare myself for the constant change and demands of the market and customers. I believe in continuous learning, I am honest, curious and impartial, and my decisions are data-driven.
When I started my career in quality, women had a good representation (At least where I used to work). I think it has a more diverse representation because quality brings together many disciplines such as statistics, engineering, business management, etc. One of the quality managers at that company was a woman and she was very well respected. I used to work with people of my own generation, both males and females so I always felt welcomed.
Yes, part of my decision of moving to the US was related to career opportunities. The US has the largest economy in the world so moving here was the best chance I had to learn and grow in my field. There are many differences (and also similarities) between working in Colombia vs the US., such as the work schedule, the amount of holidays and paid time off, and the relationship between co-workers is more casual and more friendly there, among many other things.
No. Even though there is bias in the world against women, I don't remember having the feeling of people being biased against me at work because of my sex. My parents taught me you can achieve your goals with hard work, so that is what I focus on.
There is definitely a sense of pride and accomplishment for being part of the team. I really enjoy working with everyone.
To follow their dreams. It is a great career that impacts every part of modern life.
The feeling of contributing to society in a positive way.