Robin Olshenske_150

Category C: (200+ Stores), Finalist

Robin Olshenske

Food Lion, LLC
Myrtle Beach, SC

If one gauge of effective leadership is the success of employees, then Robin Olshenske is off the chart.

Beyond achieving top scores in her company’s annual associate engagement survey, this manager of a Food Lion in Myrtle Beach, S.C. has promoted more than 20 associates to positions in her location or at other locations. Olshenske’s team members have received numerous accolades, including the store’s produce manager who was named best in the region. Many of her peers have hired associates who began their careers in Olshenske's store, where they got a strong foundation in large part from her communications on goals and opportunities.

Indeed, communication is a hallmark of her managerial style that inspires excellence. She clearly conveys goals to her team and holds weekly meetings with department leaders to talk about upcoming selling events, opportunities, shrink and other store metrics.

Together, the associates and Olshenske have worked to make her location one to emulate. In 2021, the store posted a 50% same-store sales increase – the highest in the company. Her store exceeded its entire 2020 annual sales in only 10 months of 2021. The site also led key performance indicators in the division and its EBIDTA climbed six points over the past year. Making the collaborative work even more impressive, the store achieved these results at a time when a new competitor entered the market.

Olshenske’s accomplishments led her to be chosen from 1,000 employees to receive Food Lion’s coveted Ralph W. Ketner Store Manager of the Year Award in 2021. She was bestowed that honor by also demonstrating creativity in finding new avenues for growth.

One of those paths for growth is in the digital shelf. Recognizing the growing importance of ecommerce in ominchannel retailing, Olshenske led her store to rank second of 250 stores in the division in average weekly home delivery orders. Olshenske focuses on improving fast and friendly customer ratings for ecommerce, which exceed 90% to be among the chain’s highest marks.

She also understands the importance of serving the community in inventive and relevant ways. Combining the goal of improving sustainability and bolstering food security, Olshenske’s store donated nearly 87,000 pounds of food though Food Lion’s Food Rescue Programs, helping her community in which one in seven children face hunger. On a personal level, she volunteers to help clean beaches in the coastal community that attracts visitors from all over the world, often working side by side with her associates who are also lending a hand.

“Serving in a resort community, her customers are a mix of full-time residents and visitors. Visiting Robin’s store and having her greet them has become a familiar part of family vacations to the area for many families.”