From family business to societal brand

Jim Perdue, Chairman and CEO, Perdue Farms, is interviewed by CEO Show host Robert Reiss about leading a 21,000 employee family business, innovating to serve evolving consumer needs, and working creatively to improve the environment.

Reiss inquires about how a food production business anticipates customer needs and Perdue tells him it has created an ‘innovation center’ where a lot of focus groups sample products and tell Perdue what they’re looking for. He then explains that Perdue also enlists ‘first receivers’, e.g. supermarkets, which know what’s important to the customer. From these sources, new products emerge like the Perdue “Oven Stuffer®” roaster that address needs such as increased convenience in the kitchen and speed of cooking.

Perdue also speaks about how managing a successful family business has some things in common with publically owned companies, namely “keeping the values strong: quality, integrity, trust and teamwork”. “Deviate from those values and you start to run into trouble.” Perdue stresses the major importance of making sure your people know those values.

Among other topics discussed in the interview with Jim Perdue are the influence of the social media, environmental sustainability, and providing on-site employee health services.

Interview Aired: 09/25/2011