Share this Job

Production Leader - Waco, TX


Waco, TX, US, 76712

JOB CATEGORY:  Support Services

A mutually rewarding experience.

Work. Realize your ambitions. And realize there’s more to being in business than just making a profit. That’s the Mars philosophy. And the opportunity we offer every one of our Associates. An opportunity to take what you do and make it mean more for you, for those around you and for the planet.  What you get here is challenging, interesting work. You get the tools you need to do a great job and you get to have the best possible people on your side to help you do it. And at the same time as getting to find ways to do business better today than we did it yesterday and driving a great career, you also get to build a more enlightened business and drive sustainability.

Because it’s never just about a single person, a single project or a single brand. It’s about how you can grab everything that’s within your reach here and use it to pursue mutual, long-term gain. It’s about having ideas. And ideals. Being prepared to risk failure because the promise of success means we’ll all be a little better off. It’s that mix of integrity and ambition that makes Mars such a special place to work. And why working here is always about more than just a job.

About Mars, Incorporated 

Mars is a family-owned business with more than a century of history making diverse products and offering services for people and the pets people love. With almost $35 billion in sales, the company is a global business that produces some of the world’s best-loved brands: M&M’s®, SNICKERS®, TWIX®, MILKY WAY®, DOVE®, PEDIGREE®, ROYAL CANIN®, WHISKAS®, EXTRA®, ORBIT®, 5™, SKITTLES®, UNCLE BEN’S®, MARS DRINKS and COCOAVIA®. Mars also provides veterinary health services that include BANFIELD® Pet Hospitals, Blue Pearl®, VCA® and Pet Partners™. Headquartered in McLean, VA, Mars operates in more than 80 countries. The Mars Five Principles – Quality, Responsibility, Mutuality, Efficiency and Freedom – inspire its more than 100,000 Associates to create value for all its partners and deliver growth they are proud of every day.




The Production Leader is a shift-based, front-line operations people leader who efficiently improves Quality, Human Safety, and Product Cost Conversion while Engaging and Developing talent. The Production Leaders are responsible for delivering operational targets and leading teams of, on average, 15 production associates.  The Production Leader drives safety, quality, continuous improvement, performance management, associate development, team engagement and operating results for their assigned area through shift-based leadership of a line or area that exists within a larger Value Stream organization. This manager will coordinate the short-term activities of the area within established guidelines and standards to produce the highest quality, lowest cost product in the safest and most efficient manner, while also partnering with the other members of the 24-hour Area Leadership Team to deliver area continuous improvement and Mars Supply Excellence (MSE) program implementationThe Production Leader is responsible for building an effective team on his/her shift and in his/her area of responsibility and for managing the training strategy for both the individual associates and the team. This manager will implement and enforce established policy, as well as area and organizational strategies. 


Key Responsibilities:


  • Conversion - Manage the efforts of operating teams of a multi- line, area or technology on one shift in the efficient conversion of materials into quality products in a safe, secure and sanitary manner within the product design specifications.  
  • Change Agent - Implement changes in methods, equipment, systems and organization, as needed, to assure that the objectives of the line/area are met, and give input and recommendations for such changes by using a Continuous Improvement mindset 
  • Mars Supply Excellence – Lead or participate in one or more MSE Pillars; Lead and support the implementation of Autonomous Maintenance (AM) and Autonomous Work Teams (AWTs) in area of responsibility; Lead key connection points and own reliability data collection accuracy.     
  • Area Ownership – Collaborate with the rest of the Area Leadership Team (Area Manager or Continuous Improvement EngineerContinuous Improvement Specialist, Maintenance Coordinator) to create and execute the reliability strategy for area of responsibility 
  • Coaching – Coach operators to build their functional and leadership capabilities and to drive accountability in safety, Quality and Food Safety, Autonomous Maintenance, and team engagement. 
  • Line Operations - Coordinate materials, staffing and resources to support line operation and changeovers. 
  • Standards Implementation and Adherence  Ensure standards are implemented on shift and in area of responsibility through effective communication, change management, consistent reinforcement, and through coaching, guidance, and accountability measures. 
  • Associate Safety – Ensure safe working conditions as well as safe behaviors and mindsets through the direct implementation of Mars Safety programs and through driving a relentless focus among team of operators 
  • Food Safety and Product Quality  Ensure the ongoing production of safe and defect free products consistent with the principles of Mars.  HACCP proficiency is required; this manager owns ongoing training and championing of quality goals and improvements at the Area Shift level.   
  • Associate Advocacy - Manage associate relations issues and guide and direct the hiring, training, retraining, development and motivation of Operations associates following self-managed, team working principles with a minimum degree of guidance from the Area Manager or Value Stream Manager 
  • Engagement - Responsible for facilitating and driving an environment of high associate engagement on the team. 
  • Goal Setting and Measurement - With the general guidance of the Value Stream or Area Manager, and/or the support of the Continuous Improvement Engineer, establish line and individual performance standards and goals, and measure, control, take corrective action and report results as appropriate.  
  • Troubleshooting  Utilize the technical resources on shift for the preventive maintenance, repair and troubleshooting of process/packaging equipment problems, with the objective of effectively using these resources to achieve desired performance levels.  
  • Escalations - Proactively identify risks and opportunities as well as reactively lead on-shift incident resolution when operators require additional support. Prioritize, assign resources against escalated issues, and make decisions to resolve escalated issues. 
  • Communications - Ensure that open communications are established and that opportunities to broaden the scope and responsibility of Operations teams/associates are undertaken.  
  • Technology Advancement - Advise when opportunities exist for moving the line/area forward in technological change.  
  • Operations Strategy - Participate in the implementation of improvement strategies that will help the line/area perform more effectively in the near term.  
  • Recruiting and Onboarding – Responsible for partnering with Talent Acquisition to recruit and select associates for operations roles, and responsible to onboard associates effectively 
  • Associate Development  Develop associates by mentoring and supporting their development plans and helping them grow in functional capability and long-term career 



Education & Professional Qualifications:

  • An undergraduate (Bachelor’s) degree  



  • The equivalent experience, defined as greater than 4 years of experience in a technical manufacturing continuous improvement environment, along with a High School Diploma. 
  • Preferred: 
    • A degree in one of the Engineering, basic sciences, or business related disciplines. 




  • Experience and demonstrated capability in leading others. 
  • Previous direct people leadership experience preferred.  
  • Working knowledge of Good Manufacturing Practices. 
  • Ability to convey communications clearly and concisely. 
  • Understanding of major functions within the plant and the ability to work directly with all levels and functions. 
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office software (Word, Excel, etc), internet software, e-mail. 
  • Ability to succeed in an ambiguous environment. 
  • Functional knowledge and understanding of HACCP concepts. 
  • Experience in plant sanitation practices and procedures. 
  • Ability to deliver critical performance feedback and hold associates accountable to business objectives. 
  • Champion of safety with OSHA experience or certification preferred 







Mars is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. If you need assistance or an accommodation during the application process because of a disability, it is available upon request. The company is pleased to provide such assistance, and no applicant will be penalized as a result of such a request.


Nearest Major Market: Waco

Job Segment: Engineer, Performance Management, Change Management, Recruiting, Engineering, Human Resources, Management