Penske Automotive Group is proud to have female leaders at every level of the organization. From Service Advisors and Sales Managers to General Managers and Fixed Operations Directors, the retail automotive industry offers women an exciting place to forge a career. Beyond the numbers, this is about unleashing the power of our people and utilizing their unique talents, experiences, and backgrounds to create an engaging work environment and world-class operation.
Every Monday for the past 5 weeks, we have featured a female leader from the Penske organization who is empowering women in the automotive industry and paving the road for the next generation of female leaders. From their earliest interest in the industry to their proudest moments, you’ve learned how these women got their start, who influenced them the most, and how they are helping change the face of the industry in positive ways.
Featured Female Leader: Jenny Riggs – Area Controller
“Learn as many job functions within a dealership as you can. There are so many different aspects to every dealership, the more you know, the more valuable you are.”
Jenny Riggs has worked in the automotive industry for 32 years and currently serves as the Area Controller for the Indianapolis and Upper Midwest areas. In her current role, Jenny is responsible for managing over 30 employees, accurately reporting financial statements for nine general ledgers, and making sure it is done following PAG policies and procedures, within a good internal control environment. “I really enjoy assisting customers and training employees on new job functions and tasks,” she says.
Jenny has had several memorable moments throughout her career, but she is most proud of the position she holds today. “I never dreamed of being the Area Controller, especially for the number of dealerships I currently work with. I am also proud of the role I played when Penske purchased dealerships, where I assisted with the buy/sell closing process and office set-up once the stores became PAG dealerships.”
The best career advice Jenny received was from her previous controller who told her to “always learn from your mistakes” and “when learning a new task or position, don’t take notes that you can understand today, take notes that you cannot misunderstand tomorrow.” It seemed simple at the time, but it is something Jenny still tells employees today. For women considering a career in the automotive industry, Jenny advises, “Learn as many job functions within a dealership as you can. The more you know, the more valuable you are.”
Jenny has noticed more opportunities for women in the automotive industry over the last several years. “I think it is important that women have an equal opportunity to succeed in any job,” she says. In five years, Jenny hopes to still be working in the automotive industry, either in the same role or in a position where she can assist and train employees. “I am very fortunate to have been given the opportunities to work in a variety of positions at many different levels. I think much of my success is due to the fact that I learned as many job functions within the accounting office as I could, and that helped me excel in my career.”
In her spare time, Jenny enjoys spending time with her friends and family.
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