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Career Story: Owner Of A Food Products Company

Owner Of A Food Products Company

Job Title: CEO $80,000,000 Business

Type of Company: Manufacture, sell and distribute food products to the supermarkets, club stores and restaurants.

Education: BS, Accounting, Manhattan College

Previous Experience: After college, I worked in public accounting as an auditor for four years. A client then hired me away to manage its internal auditing and I was promoted in time to controller and vice-president of finance. I then joined another company as chief financial officer and v.p. and treasurer, taking charge of its strategic planning process. I eventually became the executive vice-president and general manager of this food manufacturing company, with responsibility for all operations and profits. I then switched companies again, taking a job as chief operating officer of a $600,000 multi-division company with seven manufacturing plants. I'd spent years making money for other owners and found myself in a position to be able to buy an existing food manufacturing business and become an owner myself. I put up all the savings I had and borrowed the other 95%. The risk has paid off handsomely and, after 13 years, I've paid off all the debt and acquired the equity from the original lenders, and own the whole company.

Job Tasks: The majority of my time is spent communicating with key managers and with customers, banks and other organizations we do business with. My main function is to set and communicate the goals and objectives of the business, motivate employees to achieve those objectives, and reward their results and monitor their performance. I have a hand in all the major decisions we make and help key managers to solve problems that arise.

When you communicate with any outside company (with banks, insurance companies, lawyers, suppliers, consultants, etc.) you are always, ultimately, selling what you do. So presenting the proper image and selling my company's positive attributes is another major part of my job.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The greatest satisfaction I get comes from achieving business goals and rewarding performance with bonuses -- going to work every day,tackling opportunities and problems and having a lot of fun.

The worst part of my job is disciplining or dismissing an associate for repeated gross errors or misconduct.

Job Tips: Get a good education in the basics of business, with a strong emphasis on accounting and finance. All business comes down to profit and loss, but accounting is the language and the score keeper, and everyone involved in any aspect of a business has to have a basic understanding of it.

Also, find some aspect of the business that you like, give it your best effort and have fun. If you are not having fun then you will not be successful and you will just wind up going to WORK. If it is just work, then it probably will not be FUN. It is much better to get up every day and go to FUN as opposed to going to Work.

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