In life we often meet special people who have made a positive impact with their families, in their business and in their communities. I had the good fortune recently to meet with Joe Kanfer, the CEO of Akron, Ohio based company, GOJO Industries. You may know of them by their #1 leading brand, Purell hand sanitizer.
What struck me about Joe and their company is how they are absolutely committed to go “Above and Beyond” for their associates and their customers. They have grown immensely from their humble beginnings into a large leading world-class, multi-national organization by figuring out innovative ways to sell more and help their customers (distributors) in the process.
It starts with the mindset of being fundamentally different. In fact, you can feel the passion and personal pride that Joe believes in to permeate an “Above and Beyond Attitude” throughout their organization. Instead of being a “me too” supplier, their approach is asking “What can we do differently to help our customers and pull business through our existing distribution channel?” They spend a lot of time answering this question by coming up with effective solutions.
They make unique investments with process, systems, technology and information to help sell more of their branded products, which allows their customers to buy more from them. Whether it’s utilizing the internet or other direct marketing activities, they invest the resources required to make a difference in the eyes of their customers. And their efforts are genuinely appreciated.
At Famous, we must always look for new ways to go above and beyond. Whether it’s the small things (like popping over to a job site to drop off an emergency item) or the big things / a major initiative (like FLS, where collaboration is needed to implement it effectively). We must also invest the time, energy, and resources to solve our customers’ issues. After all, these are really just opportunities. Let’s take advantage of them.
One “above and beyond” story I would like to share from Famous is the following. Tim Sloan had a company cell phone that fell and shattered, and the screen was not usable.
Josh Vernon from IT was out of town, but took the initiative to get a new replacement ordered immediately (instead of waiting to return to the office), and it arrived the following day. Graham Ford saw when it came in, took the phone to Tim without Tim’s inquisition, and talked with him about what needed to be done to get it up and running appropriately. Tim was going into a one and a half hours meeting that morning and told Graham he wasn’t sure he knew how to complete the requirements for setup. When Tim was done with his meeting, his phone was completely set up, synchronized with his computer, all data was transferred, and he was fully operational without ever asking Graham to do it for him.
At first blush, this may seem like a trivial task, but to Tim, it definitely was not. His daily activities with our internal customers and others rely on immediate and effective communication. Josh and Graham’s skillful work, care, and initiative was a difference maker, and truly above and beyond. We love that sense of urgency and willingness to help a fellow associate (internal customer) without being asked.
Our challenge is to make it happen every moment of the day. GOJO and Famous, although in different industries, have a similar mindset which is the willingness and desire to serve. I’m proud of you and the things we are doing consistently to go above and beyond for each other and our customers.
Thank you again,