Updated: August 24, 2011
Early this month, I was invited to attend a Bloggers Plant Tour of Gardenia Philippines in LIIP Mamplasan, BiÃ±an, Laguna.
Remembering how I’ve always enjoyed “field trips” back in elementary, I did not hesitate to confirm my attendance to the event.
I’m glad I did because I was not disappointed. I felt like a kid going around the plant. It was really fascinating and mesmerizing to watch how “tasty bread” is made by these machines.
Indeed, Gardenia today is already a household name for Filipinos; and has become synonymous to high quality bread.
Talking with the officers and staff of Gardenia Philippines that day made me realize that this achievement did not come easy for them. It took a lot of passion, dedication and focus to be where they are now.
Below are six business lessons I’ve learned from this very rewarding tour. 😉
Working for a Vision
The day started with a briefing from Sales and Marketing Manager, Nestor Constancia. It was from him that I learned Gardenia Philippines’ mission and vision – which is to be a “premier baking company” in the country known for “best quality and great tasting bakery and related food products”.
Many entrepreneurs forego having a mission and vision for their business. But I believe having one is important because this is what will guide, inspire and motivate you to become a success.
Dedication to Quality
After the short briefing, we started our plant tour. Sir Nestor and other officers of the company joined us. We saw how Gardenia Philippines use only the best ingredients and how very strict they are in terms of safety and cleanliness inside the plant.
The “pwede na” mentality is one of the worst things you can do for your business. Seek excellence and success will follow.
A Slogan that Says It All
Gardenia’s slogan, “Masarap kahit walang palaman” (So good… you can even eat it on its own) is not only catchy, but more importantly, holds true for their products. It’s a marketing catchphrase, but also an accurate description of their brand.
A catchy and effective business and product slogan can go a long way. In just a few words, you can successfully impart to your consumers what your brand is all about.
Investment on Technology
One of the most awe-inspiring scene in the plant is the two spiral towers that the company uses to cool down the fresh-baked bread before cutting. It came from Japan and is made from Samurai steel, which dissipates heat faster.
Gardenia Philippines uses equipment from top manufacturers abroad to ensure that their technology is up-to-date and most efficient. Whatever your business is, continuous research and development in technology is needed to keep up with the changing demands of your consumers.
Efficient Production System
Gardenia Philippines produces 12,000 loaves and buns per hour. They deliver 650,000 loaves and buns daily. Think about those numbers and imagine how it would be impossible to achieve that if they didn’t have an efficient production system.
A production system is an integral part of most businesses. Aside from having a great product, meeting the demands of your market will ensure that you’re customer satisfaction remains high and your profits are optimal.
Learning from Your Consumers
The tour ended in an open forum with the officers and staff of Gardenia Philippines, including President and General Manager Simplicio Umali Jr. who took the time from his busy schedule to meet us, bloggers.
It was during this time that I learned that the company regularly monitors the weather to help plan their nationwide deliveries – because when it’s raining, Filipinos eat more bread! Now that’s a very insightful market research information!
I’d like to thank everyone at Gardenia Philippines for their hospitality during our plant tour that day, and special thanks go to Nomnomclub for the invitation they extended to me.
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