Can Kind People Finish First?
By "Jim Lein, Oracle Midsize-Oracle" on Jun 05, 2014
by Jim Lein, Oracle Midsize Programs
In an earlier post, I expressed my undying love for KIND Snacks' products. This month's Oracle Profit magazine features an interview with KIND Healthy Snacks Founder and CEO Daniel Lubetzky entitled "Better Business". Lubetzky expresses his vision for making KIND a "not for profit only" company.
All great companies start with a good idea. In this case, that one great idea was to offer a healthy snack with ingredients you can "see and pronounce". That's one of things I really like about this company--that coupled with the fact that their snacks taste great. They compete in an over crowded playing field but I've found that it's rare to find an energy snack that both tastes good and is good for you.
A couple of interesting facts I learned from reading this article:
- 9 out of 10 consumers who try a KIND bar will purchase a KIND product again and recommend it to others
- KIND has the highest Net
Promoter Score among the top 10 brands in the nutritional bar category (I confess I've never heard about this rating before but now that I have it's pretty cool)
KIND's coporate mantra, "Do the Kind Thing" both encourages people to do random acts of kindness and provides easy mechanisms for doing so. Not coincidentally, I think, KIND is indeed a story about how nice guys can finish first. KIND has doubled in size every year for the last ten years and now employees over 300 people, with sales exceeding $120M annually.
Growth Applies Pressures
One thing I know for certain from interacting our with fast growing customers over the last fifteen years is that growth applies myriad pressures across the organization--resources, processes, technology systems, and leadership agility. And it's easy to forget that Oracle was once an entrepreneurial startup and experienced all
those same pressures that other growing companies are experiencing today.
When asked by Profit Editor in Chief Aaron Lazenby, " What sort of pressure does KIND"s growth and success place on operations?", Lubetzky responded, "We have a demand planning process right now that is manual to a significant extent, and it just takes so much management time. It takes us days and sometimes weeks to produce information that is critical to our business—and by the time we get the results, we need revised data. Our sales leadership could go out selling, but instead they’re talking to our team about forecasts."
Hitching Your Wagon to Oracle
Lubetzky and his team selected Oracle for what I believe is our company's greatest strength: hitch your wagon to Oracle and you can trust that we will be there for the long run with the solutions you need and financial staying power.
In Lubetzky's words, "The KIND philosophy requires you to have a long-term view of things; taking shortcuts may be the fastest way to get things done, but in the long term that can come back and bite you. Oracle is the type of company—and has the kind of platform—that is here for the long term. It’s not going to go away tomorrow. And Oracle is going to invest all the necessary resources into staying ahead of the game and improving."
o next time you're in the supermarket or an REI (my favorite store in the world) or any of the other 80,000 locations that carry KIND, give one a try. Maybe some day you'll want to become a KIND Brand Ambassador.
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I evangelize Oracle's enterprise solutions for growing midsize companies. I recently celebrated 15 years with Oracle,
having joined JD Edwards in 1999. I'm based in Evergreen, Colorado and
love relating stories about creativity and innovation whether they be
about software, live music, or the mountains. The views expressed here are my own, and not necessarily those of Oracle.