The Food Journal and Food, Nutrition & Science

An alliance between The Lempert Report and The Center for Food Integrity

Call to Action for the Next Generation

Call to Action for the Next Generation

Shoppers and Trends

August 24, 2008

Now more than ever there needs to be a Call to Action in our industry to attract and retain an exceptional team and to develop this team to meet the ever complex challenges of today’s marketplace. Some of the ways we can accomplish this is to take full advantage of continuing education programs to develop our existing teams, while reaching out to community colleges and universities to find the next generation of managers and leaders. Inside our companies and stores, we need to present career path opportunities, ensure compensation is competitive, provide training and development opportunities and emphasize the dynamic nature of the grocery industry to retain and recruit the people we need for the future of our industry. A recent study of human resource professionals indicated 94% of them feel that their workforce is not adequately prepared to meet the future goals of their organization. A real challenge!
 
This challenge is also about leadership. Leadership is less about mastering situations than about developing a genuine interest in talent, and for fostering positive feelings in the people whose cooperation and support you need. The educational experiences of today’s young people have not evolved enough to take them to the level needed in order to compete. Leaders need to be more focused on the people required to successfully compete in order to meet this critical challenge. We all need to take full advantage of the resources available to develop managers and recruit the next generation of leaders – and there are many.
 
N.G.A. and it its Food Industry Coalition have developed a number of resources to assist its members to meet this challenge. There are over 20 universities in this coalition that continue to work on programs to develop current department managers for N.G.A. members, while attracting our next generation of leaders needed to compete in a very complex marketplace. At the upcoming 2009 Annual N.G.A. Convention many of these programs and services will be showcased to and for the industry.
 
There may be no greater challenge that we face in our industry. So I would urge to contact us at N.G.A. and let us help you meet this challenge – a Call to Action!