Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 82

WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT
safety is so important. Also, we are social creatures, and
so we really want to be part of a group, part of a tribe. "
New Horizons embraces what Ms. Bediako calls a
speak-up culture in its facilities, encouraging employees
to say what's on their minds. Listening to workers helps
the company stay agile and flexible.
" You can say what's on your mind, and we're not going
to hold that against you, " she said. " We have an HR hotline
that employees can call when they have concerns.
That information will be handled confidentially, and
we'll deal with each issue one on one. This workforce
is requiring attention in a different way. The status quo
isn't good enough anymore. It's about feelings, you've got
to listen to them and see how we're going to adapt. "
Getting new workers off to a good start is vital to success,
so bakeries are working on their onboarding processes
to help them adapt quickly.
" Some of the things we're trying to do is, one, do a betBrad
Alexander
of Flowers Foods
spoke on a supply
chain panel at the
BEMA Convention
that also touched
on workforce
challenges.
BEMA
Bakers understand that finding good quality workers
and supporting them through training and other means
is critical for success.
" We have a lot of aspirations and things we want to
do to elevate this business, " said Trina Bediako, CEO of
New Horizons Baking Co., Norwalk, Ohio. " But if our
people aren't solidified - if they don't have the training
and the resources at their disposal, if we're not giving
them the support that they need - we can't reach
our goals. These dreams mean nothing. And we see that
from top to bottom. "
Safe environment and good start
So how can bakeries help their workers not only succeed
but also want to stay with the company? Ms. Goyette
said the first thing she does when she starts to assess a
company's culture is talk to managers and frontline employees
about what it feels like to work at the company.
" I ask questions that lead to: Is there psychological
safety? Do they feel like they can throw out ideas or
provide feedback that's not punitive or they don't get
any kind of retribution? " she asked. " That psychological
ter job of onboarding, making sure the people that come
on, and we don't just throw them to the fire and leave
them alone, " Mr. Alexander said. " So we want to provide
a mentoring program, making sure we're following up, especially
that first week or two. How are you doing and so
forth. And we also want to show them a career path. "
Mike Porter, president and COO of New Horizons,
echoed that theme, explaining that good training starts
with a good onboarding process.
New Horizons looks at the company's staffing needs
intentionally, Mr. Porter said, and the company is committed
to training workers not just how to run equipment
but also teaching soft skills and how to make good
decisions on the job.
" One of our core values is that we behave as an owner, "
he said. " We want our people to understand that when it
comes to their decisions they make on the floor, we want
them to think as an owner would: that this is your product,
this is your business, your name, which it is. We
want them to have that same belief as we do. And that's a
challenge. You only build that through leadership. "
" IF AN ORGANIZATION CAN INVEST
ANYWHERE, START WITH YOUR
FRONTLINE SUPERVISORS. "
Kerry Goyette, Aperio Consulting Group
82 Baking & Snack September 2021 / www.bakingbusiness.com
Developing leadership skills
Creating a supportive work culture begins at the top.
But it's also important to ensure that mid-level managers
and supervisors working with frontline employees
have the skills they need to ensure success for everyone
at the company.
Setting priorities is the key. Throwing too many things
at employees at once can cause them to stop and withdraw
because they are overwhelmed, Ms. Goyette said.
" We need to be creating clarity for our people. Some
of the reasons we're getting burned out is we're doing a
thousand things, and we're not even sure what the priority
is, " she said. " Three to five priorities is what we can
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Baking & Snack - September 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Baking & Snack - September 2021

Baking & Snack - September 2021 - Intro
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 1
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 2
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - VDG-1
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - VDG-2
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 3
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 4
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 5
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 6
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 7
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 8
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 9
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 10
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 11
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 12
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 13
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Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 16
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 17
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Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 19
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 20
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Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 30
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Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 33
Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 34
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Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 36
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Baking & Snack - September 2021 - 38
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