When we look at other businesses we see their corporate culture. A business culture based on the principles of Gratitude Marketing will include various aspects and provide us great guidance in how we should base our own businesses. It does not matter if the example is a large corporation or a small, one person business, we can learn from others and see how base our own operations on the principles of Gratitude Marketing.
In this month’s issue of The Costco Connection magazine (which I frequently use as a source of information on how businesses should relate to the public) is a story about the founder of Chobani, Hamdi Ulukaya. The growth of this brand from a startup company in 2005, to a national product in 2008, to the best-selling Greek yogurt in the US in 2010, to their international success is a story from which businesses of any size can learn.
Hamdi Ulukaya has built his business on a culture of emulating the fundamentals of Gratitude Marketing. He based his company on what he learned from his parents, hiring locally when he can, but also reaching out to refugees who he placed in his operations and who could not find work in the local labor market. He works with his employees, building their respect and loyalty and what he terms “ the Chobani way”.
In 2010 he started the Chobani Foundation to share a portion of his profits with charity, investing in communities and opened his second US facility, which now houses a community center. His products feature natural, non-GMO ingredients, locally-sourced, without any preservatives or artificial colors. The corporate culture includes wages above the state or federal minimum levels, full health care benefits, a company-sponsored retirement plan, and a profit sharing plan.
He believes that the company should provide more than a salary to the people who help create and maintain the corporation’s success. In addition, there is the Chobani Food Incubator, which supports food and beverage startups through grants and mentorship, teaching others how to be successful. He believes that a business must serve others, its employees, the community, and the environment. He has realized the American Dream and wants to help others do so.
I always recommend that everyone read publications that will help us build our business success through the application of Gratitude Marketing but also understand that this means more than just prospecting and obtaining new customers. It also means retaining clients, remembering and honoring networking partners, supporting employees and others who help us build and maintain our businesses, and helping our communities and the environment in general. It is a Revolution of Kindness.