Rogers Family Coffee

How to Succeed in Business: the Rogers Family Way

Rogers Family Coffee

How does a business achieve success?  How does a mom and pop turn into a major national brand?  Well, it doesn’t happen overnight, and it takes a corporate culture committed to doing the right thing in all aspects.

These are just a few things Dana M. discovered when she interviewed Rogers Family Company for her Introduction to Business course last Fall.

The Beginning

Dana was tasked with a paper and presentation on Strategic Management for her intro business course and didn’t want to pick a local small business or a major international brand like Coca-Cola.  She wanted to stand out from her classmates.

In what she described as serendipitous, Dana discovered Rogers Family Company.

One weekend morning about a week before I had to turn in my choice, I was sitting in the kitchen, clutching my first cup of the day, while pondering my dilemma.  I happened to look up at the box of our first shipment of San Francisco Bay OneCups, and the side detailing the Rogers' Family's work in the coffee growers' communities was serendipitously faced toward me.  I felt gobsmacked.

Rogers Family on the Farm

During her research and interviews, Dana discovered many qualities that she connected with on a personal level, as well as verifying good business strategies.  Most specifically, our Earth-friendly growing and packaging practices.

I am not a "back to nature" or "off the grid" type of person but I think everyone can chip in to make the world better.  So your company policies on shade-grown coffee and developing the vermi-composting and biogas plants resonated deeply with me.

During our exchange, Dana also reflected on her childhood and the origin for her business philosophy.  In her hometown of 1,000 folks, a small candy company employed 15 people including Dana’s mother.  The owner, Mrs. Drew, believed success was based on using high quality ingredients, excellent customer service, and charging a reasonable price.

We couldn’t agree more.

From the beginning, Rogers Family Company has been led by its patriarch, Jon Rogers, and it was always his intent to have a business centered on the Win-Win.

He says:

We truly believe that everyone can win in business.  In our day-to-day transactions and the way we run our business, we strive to make sure that all sides come away with a win.  Our customers should win with great quality at a great price; our retailers should win; we should win; and the coffee farmers should win.  This has been a very important part of our philosophy.

Jon Rogers

Just like Mrs. Drew, Jon Rogers considers the employees of his company as family, and he recognizes that success comes as a sum of all efforts not just one.  That’s why he says...

Ours is a company where we encourage everyone to say, "what if we tried this?"  One problem with large organizations is that the chain of command hinders the ability to think in clever ways or really give new ideas a chance.  We don’t do that.  Every member of our family and leadership team here are interested in new ideas no matter where they come from.

In her research, Dana reached out to Rogers Family Company believing she would speak with an intern or lower level employee.  To her surprise, she had many exchanges with Jim Rogers, the oldest son of the Rogers family.  Dana said,

I never dreamed that it would be Jim Rogers who would respond!  He was so gracious about sharing information, despite what seemed like an incredibly hectic schedule.

The Result

Dana worked hard and earned an ‘A’ for her efforts, and we like to believe we earned another loyal and loving customer.

In ending our exchange she said,

It is good to know it’s still possible to run a business successfully without ruining the environment and treating people as less than human.

Thanks, Dana, we are just doing our part!  We wish you all the luck, and who knows, maybe our paths will cross again.

 

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