Passion Project: Culture and Learning
Ericka Ulloa, Logistics Manager, Mexico
“My father gave me the choice of a quinceañera for the opportunity to go to a summer camp in Canada. I went to camp. I knew I would meet people from all over the world and it was a chance to improve my English,” shared Ericka. “I still keep in touch with my camp friends today.”
Ericka’s passion for cultural exposure shaped her career. She knew she wanted to study a major that would afford her global opportunities. She was familiar with international relations, but then discovered international business and trade. She felt the latter would lend to a more innovative career and chose logistics because of its grounding in organization. She says “logistics is in everything we do. You need logistics if you want to plan a good party, run a hospital or win a war.”
She certainly picked a career that provided her with endless international opportunities to grow professionally and personally. Over the years she has worked alongside colleagues from around 15 different countries. While she’s learned a lot about cultural differences, every interaction has also taught her how we are more alike than different.
“At the end of the day, we are all the same. We are working together to meet goals and objectives. No matter where you are from, we can work together to achieve the goal and be successful. I have learned a lot about work and life from colleagues around the world. Some are warmer and friendlier, other bosses can be tougher to work for, but it’s those differences that makes us a better team.”
What she has loved about her colleagues at Kids2 is that it’s not just the cultural backgrounds her colleagues bring to the table, but the Kids2 culture that everyone practices.
“One of the first things that impressed me about my new job was having colleagues who are always willing to help, are very respectful and knowledgeable. Plus, everyone – no matter where they live – knows what we need to do to be successful.”
Ericka joined Kids2 in October 2021 as a logistics manager for our Mexico operations. She manages product imports and the 3PL warehousing & distribution operation. She ensures product is available and customers receive their orders on time. This requires strong, open communication, both internally and externally, especially when plans can change instantly and often. Ericka lives in Hidalgo, Mexico with her family and travels to the warehouse and Mexico City office monthly. “We have a great team in Mexico. With Alika Rodriguez’s leadership we are going to be very successful.”
Early in her career, Ericka had a boss who told her to prioritize. Her boss was referring to choosing between her career or her family. That wasn’t an option for Ericka. At Kids2 she has been so happy to find strong women in leadership positions. She says Alika, Lisa Moses and Mosky Suddreth are three women that are very inspiring and supportive, great people to call colleagues.
Ericka’s love for logistics spills over to her personal life. She’s a wife and mother of three kids – Daniela (15), Karla (12) and Hugo (8). Plus, the family has five pets! Two cats (Nari and Zuri) and three dogs (Rocko, Duque and Rex).
“We are a big family – kids and pets – but everyone knows their responsibilities. My husband, Hugo, says we have to even keep our family routine when school is out because without the logistics we will fail, and the house will be a mess!”
Faith and family are very important values to Ericka. She appreciates that her job doesn’t detract from her family time and that she works for a company that values diversity. She and her husband, Hugo, teach their children the importance of being great human beings as well as appreciating and learning from each other’s differences. Ericka has been impressed by the Kids2 Belonging and Inclusion program because it expands team member’s knowledge base, and we can appreciate our colleagues even more from around the world.
“We are all different in many ways, but we share the same organizational culture. It doesn’t matter what are skin color or nationality or religion is, in end we are a Kids2 family which knows and respects each other.”
She has really appreciated the various cultural awareness month celebrations and was very touched with June’s Pride month program. Ericka even had her oldest daughter join the LBGTQ+: The Power of Allyship online forum. “She told me that it was great that my company organized the forum and that she learned how to support someone and encourage them to be their self.”
More so, Ericka was touched by the LBGTQ+ Inside Kids2 profile on Alec Gorowitz. In his story, Alec shared that he wasn’t afraid to come out but was afraid of shattering the dreams his parents had for him.
“That really resonated with me. I sat down with my kids that evening and told them that I want you to be you, and that is more important than worrying about how I or your dad will react,” shared Ericka. “I had them read the story too.”
Ericka has always valued the importance of education. She keeps her children learning outside of school with mathematic and English classes. She speaks Spanish, French and English. She started to learn German during the pandemic but had to pause classes when she started her new job last October. In years past, she has spent time teaching English to her children’s friends and other moms. When she’s not busy running a tight ship at home, you can find her playing sports. She loves basketball (played in college), volleyball and swimming.
She and her husband have been married for 13 years, together for almost 16 years. They met when attending a job interview and he was an HR intern! They have a dream to take their family to Asia one day. She especially loves the disciplined and organized culture, and her daughters are big K-pop fans to boot.