Team spirit

Lake Andes, SD, retail associates Tiffany Stewart and Norma Soulek and Postmaster Tamara Rokusek are all smiles this week as they handle holiday mail.

The pace of peak season is picking up — and employees from every corner of the Postal Service are stepping up their game.

USPS expects to process and deliver about 16 billion mailpieces during the holidays, including 750 million packages, a 12 percent increase from last year.

Everyone has a role to play.

“When I walk through the door and see the volume of mail, I feel the urgency to get it processed in a timely manner for our customers,” said Tammy Wilson, who operates an Automated Parcel and Bundle Sorter at the Chicago Network Distribution Center.

In some cases, employees are overcoming unusual challenges.

In North Dakota, where a blizzard struck this week, rural carriers are making deliveries with help from farmers who have plowed paths to Post Offices.

Postal Service leaders are underscoring the teamwork approach.

In Miami, Postmaster Rick Suarez recently presented employees at the local Vehicle Maintenance Facility with a banner that reads, “Thank you for keeping the mail moving.”

The goal: to honor the employees for their efforts to ensure postal vehicles run smoothly.

“Everyone in this organization has an important role to play during peak season — and all year long,” Suarez said.