As part of Apologia’s annual leadership retreat in November, we had the unique opportunity to take an insider’s tour of the Hendrick Motorsports complex in Charlotte, North Carolina. Hendrick is home to four of the most successful racing teams in NASCAR, including those of drivers Jeff Gordon, Jimmie Johnson, Dale Earnhardt Jr., and Kasey Kahne. Not only was the tour fun and informative, but it also served as an inspirational team-building exercise for the Apologia leadership team.
Our time at the Hendrick facility gave us an up-close look at how this eleven-time NASCAR championship organization thrives, not only making and assembling parts for the cars they race, but also working together as a “family” of employees. Everyone shares in the joy of victory as well as the disappointment of defeat. After a first-place finish on the track, the winning driver visits the Hendrick complex and rings a bell as he walks through every department and high-fives the employees. He shares that week’s victory with every team member, knowing that it takes the talent and commitment of each employee to make on-track success possible.
As at Apologia, the employees of Hendrick pray together. They host a Bible study each week and provide lunch for the employees who attend. Like Apologia, family comes first at Hendrick. They take care of their own. All are willing to pitch in and help when anyone needs something.
Every person on the Hendrick team takes pride in what he or she does, understanding that every person’s contribution is an integral part of the whole. In fact, many people spend their entire careers at Hendrick, and rarely does someone leave for “greener” pastures.
In auto racing, Hendrick Motorsports exemplifies what “team” looks like, and their eleven NASCAR championships are a testament to the combined, determined efforts of a talented group of people.
At Apologia, we’ve brought together a talented group of godly individuals to help make us a championship organization in our own right. The daily contributions of these individuals make it possible for us to fulfill our mission to help homeschoolers learn, live, and defend the Christian faith.
During our tour of Hendrick, I was particularly impressed by a group of six signs that spell out the organization’s mission. These signs made me reflect on our terrific Apologia family and the godly values with which we are encouraged to conduct our work and business. I have taken the liberty of adapting these six mission statements to share with you our own vision for excellence at Apologia:
INTEGRITY We believe in doing what is right for fellow team members and for our customers. We will uphold the core values of Apologia in every action we take and every decision we make.
ENTHUSIASMWe genuinely desire our customers and vendors to know that we value them and care about them. We will commit ourselves every day to exceeding their expectations.
WINNINGWe are passionate about continuing the Apologia tradition of producing the highest-quality, award-winning books and resources. We are empowered to overcome obstacles, and we will do what it takes to satisfy our customers, lift up our team, and serve the homeschooling community.
ACCOUNTABILITYAt all levels, we will live up to our commitments and hold one another accountable. We take ownership of problems and challenges that confront us and ensure that they are resolved to the satisfaction of all parties.
TEAMWORKWe believe that Jesus Christ is the owner and leader of Apologia, and that people are our most important asset. We believe that through trust and respect, everyone achieves more. We will work together to use our diverse individual talents and skills to glorify God and lift up His people.
IMPROVEMENTWe will continuously take the initiative to find ways to do our work better, smarter, and faster. We will help each other improve. We will wisely steward our God-given resources to seek opportunities for growth and development.
I count it a privilege and honor to serve the Lord side by side with my fellow team members at Apologia. Thank you for making our family a part of your family!
Kellie Wile-Bush is the Director of Human Resources and Office Manager for Apologia Educational Ministries. She has been with Apologia for almost fifteen years and counts it a privilege to serve the homeschooling community. A graduate of Ball State University, Kellie serves on Apologia’s leadership team and is active in her church and local community. Kellie and her husband, Mark, live in Indianapolis and have two grown daughters and two grandchildren.