How National Van Lines retained its culture and success through employee ownership, guided by the ESOP advisory services of Verit Advisors.
For nearly a decade, I have had the pleasure of knowing and working with Maureen Beal, the third-generation owner and chairman and CEO of National Van Lines, the national company whose brand is synonymous with “moving.” Maureen, who began as a teen switchboard operator at the company and then in 1993 took the helm after … Read More
A favorite question of mine for any CEO: What’s the toughest thing about your business? I guarantee you any executive in the supermarket industry will rank among his or her top headaches the hiring and retention of good people, in an industry where service quality increasingly is the mark of differentiation, and worker turnover is … Read More
Peoria, Ill., without Caterpillar (CAT)? Benton Harbor, Mich., without Whirlpool (WHR)? Columbus, Ind., without Cummins Engine (CMI)? One of America’s under-appreciated relationships is the one between smaller cities and bigger companies, an often-happy exchange of quality-of-life for the combination of well-paying and skilled jobs, economic growth and stability, and corporate generosity to support cultural and … Read More
In Corvallis, Oregon, a couple miles north of the Oregon State University campus, sits a WinCo Foods discount supermarket and, unless you’re in need of groceries, you might drive by without noticing it. I assure you, however, it’s an extraordinary building, a laboratory of capitalism worthy of pilgrimages by the world’s great business schools. It … Read More
I hate to say it, but here goes: too many Americans, including highly-educated and experienced business people, have just plain given up on this country’s manufacturing industries, believing low-cost producers in China and elsewhere are unbeatable. And many of these same knowledgeable people would also tell you that solving the country’s retirement savings crisis is … Read More
On Chicago’s North Side, decades after other manufacturing companies went bust, migrated to the South or outsourced everything to China, S&C Electric – a $700 million-a-year maker of equipment for utilities – stood independent, profitable and debt free. Then, its controlling stockholder, John C. Conrad, died at age 89, and like so many family companies … Read More