Genesee Brewery, one of America's oldest breweries and the oldest in New York State, was just weeks away from closing its doors in 2009 when it was acquired by KPS Capital. Then in 2013 it was purchased by FIFCO, a Costa-Rican company with a "Triple Bottom Line" strategy, which balances "People, Planet and Profits." Since the acquisition and the infusion of the Triple Bottom Line strategy into Genesee's operations, it has seen a remarkable turnaround and continued growth. Tune in to this episode with FIFCO USA's Mary Beth Popp to hear about how Triple Bottom Line is NOT a philanthropic strategy, but a business strategy with a true ROI, as well as the lessons learned that you can apply to adopting a Triple Bottom Line in your own business.
Mary Beth leads corporate relations for FIFCO USA. Following their Triple Bottom Line strategy, she works to build the business by focusing on improving the company’s environmental and social footprints through investments, volunteerism and building community in markets where FIFCO USA operates. Prior to coming to FIFCO USA, Mary Beth was a partner who headed the Brand Public Relations practice for Eric Mower and Associates (now the Mower Agency). In this role, she led the FIFCO USA account dating back to 2007. She has a long history with the Genesee Brewery and has played a passionate role in its rebirth. Her goal is to actively work to improve Northeast Rochester for employees, visitors and residents while supporting and driving Genesee’s business.
[1:30] An overview of the "Triple Bottom Line" strategy of People, Planet and Profit
[2:30] How Triple Bottom Line came to be adopted at Genesee's parent company, FIFCO
[4:20] How a Triple Bottom Line can mitigate risk for the company
[6:30] Bringing FIFCO's Triple Bottom Line strategy to Genesee Brewery
[8:00] Start the change internally and "measure what matters"
[9:40] Creating culture change at Genesee, both through practices and physical design
[13:00] Lessons learned from engaging with community stakeholders "Start small, but be inclusive"
[15:15] Case study for transforming High Falls Terrace Park
[18:30] Challenges in balancing the needs of stakeholders
[19:30] Integrating employees in the community "You need to develop authentic relationships. It's not about just writing a check. It's about truly understanding people and earning their respect: asking for their advice, for their help, giving them your support...and that takes time."
[20:50] Getting buy-in by giving employees a choice on a variety of projects "It's definitely a purpose-driven strategy, but at the same time it's a business strategy...this is not a philanthropic strategy. Philanthropic strategies are not integrated in the business...they are a side-part, nice-to-have, if-we-can...FIFCO USA Triple Bottom Line is integrated within the business strategy and THAT is what makes it unique and sustainable long-term"
[24:00] Weeks away from closing its doors to a Triple Bottom Line turnaround
[25:00] How to "measure what matters" for the Triple Bottom Line
[27:30] Keeping score and telling stories as a way to motivate employees
[29:15] Lost a sports contract and replaced it with a Triple Bottom Line strategy - Saw 6% sales increase!
[32:00] Competitors as stakeholders ... win-win-wins that grow the pie for everyone
[37:00] Mary Beth's career path
[40:30] Growing conscious leaders for the future of Genesee
[43:40] Being a great listener
[44:45] Misconceptions as barriers to Conscious EVOLution - "It's an insurance policy for your reputation...it's an opportunity to drive growth for your business. When people understand the strategy and can see the results of that strategy, they're more likely to adopt it."
[45:40] Start your company's Conscious EVOLution through stakeholder mapping and listening
[47:00] The future for Genesee / FIFCO USA "As the business continues to grow, our Triple Bottom Line impacts will grow as well."
[48:45] Conscious Capitalism as an Economic Development strategy