In this edition of "What's in Your Cup," we spoke with Royal Cup’s Karen Mealing. At the time of the interview, her role at Royal Cup was a Line 40 Operator, but we are excited to share her recent promotion as a Flavor Technician. Karen was thrilled to tell us about her journey with Royal Cup, what surprised her the most about working for the organization, and what Women's History Month means to her.
Before we dive in, it is only fitting we start this blog as we always do. So, Karen, what’s in your cup?
“Well, I was in a bit of a rush today, so I am enjoying my favorite blend, Prideland Fancy Gourmet with a splash of caramel-flavored creamer.” Karen shared, “I love this blend so much that I recommend it to all of my friends so they can enjoy its’ delicious taste too.”
Karen has been with Royal Cup for almost nine years. “In 2013, I was hired by Hatton Smith and started with the company in my role as Machine Operator.” Karen stated, “After some time within the role, my supervisor recommended that I apply for the Line 40 Operator position. During my eight-year tenure in that role, I was responsible for ensuring our customers' product bags met company standards.”
Karen has been with the organization for quite a while, so we asked what surprised her most about working for the Royal Cup. Karen stated, “The Smith family surprised me. Their genuine care for people has been an inspiration to me, and the respect they show to us employees makes me proud to be a part of the company. I want to see the company prosper in every way, and to do that it takes everyone within the company to contribute. I believe that the Smiths and the leadership team is a great example of this.”
Since it is Women’s History Month, we asked Karen what the observance means to her. Karen stated, “Women’s History Month is all about girl power. It’s empowering because women are fearfully and wonderfully made. We are strong-minded, liberated, and we are making moves in places like never before. I am inspired by how far we have come as women. It’s a beautiful thing to witness, and I am fortunate enough to be a part of it.”
We can confirm that when you get a chance to sit down with Karen, you will feel as though you have known her forever. To end our conversation, we asked her some fun questions:
1. What kind of music do you like?
“I love music from the 60s, 70s, and 80s era. Earth, Wind, and Fire, Commodores, The Gap Band, and Madonna take me back to when I used to watch Soul Train and pretended to be one of the dancers. I also, love country music.”
2. What’s one thing that you are proud of?
“I am proud of my daughter. I have watched her grow into a beautiful young woman. She is in medical school and she’s a great mother. If I have not done anything else, I have done a great job with her. I am also proud of my mother because she has made me the woman I am today.”
3. What’s one thing you are good at that people do not typically know?
"I am a chef by trade. I started my early career working in restaurants. I have been a sous chef and a top chef. Cooking is a passion of mine. In my kitchen, you will find quality utensils so that I can ensure I am bringing the best out of each meal I prepare."
4. Are you a morning person or a night owl?
"I am very much a night owl, so my 3rd shift role is very fitting for me. It can be very peaceful, and it works with my personal schedule. I have been on the 3rd shift since my daughter was 5 months, and now she is almost 30."
One of Karen’s goals for this year is to develop her skills as a flavor technician. With her committed to win drive, we know she will excel in this new role.
Interviewed and Written by Ashley Moore