Daniella Picciotti still remembers her first auditing experiences. On a supplier audit with more senior colleagues, it was difficult to determine her role. Her team went to the supplier to verify compliance, and colleagues who had been doing this for twenty years went through the process instinctively. As she shadowed them she wasn’t sure what to do. But she reminded herself that she was a customer: “I do count.” While it was easy to read procedures, it wasn’t clear how to approach employees. She wondered, “Do I need to ask permission? Can I talk to someone?”
After this experience, she learned by going out again and again, and asking questions such as: What kinds of things do you look for in a plant tour? Then she created guidelines so the new next person wouldn’t have to go through this steep learning curve. Since then, she’s tackled a variety of audits, found she enjoyed the process, and began teaching the subject as well.