Chief Operations Officer

COMPANY:

Family-owned producer and marketer of agricultural products.

REPORTS/RELATIONSHIPS:

The Chief Operations Officer (COO) will report to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and manage a team of eight direct reports and over 200 additional employees.

BASIC FUNCTIONS:

The COO will develop and execute the company’s vision and strategy for leading and sustaining peak performance in daily operations. As an integral member of the executive leadership team, the COO will help drive the organization’s mission while providing the safest, highest quality products.

Primary responsibilities will include, but not necessarily be limited to:

  • Create and drive a culture in which leaders inspire achievement, promote engagement, and embolden continuous improvement through the company’s core values of family, accountability, integrity, teamwork, humility.
  • Advise the CEO on strategic business development initiatives and key planning issues that relate to, and impact, the operations across all companies.
  • As a key leader, the COO will motivate and encourage employees at all levels in the company to be responsible, successful, high performing, and to live out the company’s core values.
  • Analyze and develop operational metrics and data to identify processes improvement opportunities and ensure that, as the company grows, production capabilities meet or exceed all industry and customer requirements for performance, cost, quality, and responsiveness.
  • Develop and manage budgeting and budget execution with a focus on production costs and margins.
  • Direct all production control, production process development, quality systems, purchasing, and logistical activities; ensure SQF compliance.
  • Partner with the sales team to maintain and build trusted relationships with key customers, clients, and owners; play an active role in senior-level negotiations with vendors and customers.
  • Develop proper organizational structure within locations and departments and challenge current processes and assumptions underlying each location’s operations.
  • Set aggressive, yet obtainable, performance goals tailored to each location which are tied to the long-term goals of the company.
  • Develop and sustain a robust manufacturing, supply chain, and quality discipline which drives down cost while maximizing customer service.
  • Prepare long-range planning models for development of capacity and technical capabilities – planning for future expansions.
  • Ensure that facilities/equipment are maintained above industry standards and that employees are trained well to perform their work assignments.
  • Motivate, reward, and recognize the performance of others; counsel, guide, and direct where needed and set the standard of performance.
  • Aggressively manage capital investment and expenses to ensure the company meets CEO’s expectations relative to growth and profitability.
  • Partner with the CFO to achieve favorable financial results with respect to sales, profitability, cash flow, mergers and acquisitions, systems, reporting, and controls; work closely with senior management team to create, implement, and roll out plans for operational processes, internal infrastructures, reporting systems, and company policies all designed to foster growth, profitability, and efficiencies within the company.

REQUIREMENTS:

  • 10+ years of operations experience in senior management, preferably in a high-volume, process-oriented setting in a related industry; knowledge of agricultural commodities, animal agriculture, and further processing preferred.
  • Strong understanding of materials management, from planning through purchasing, and of commodity procurement as it relates to Feed Mill operations.
  • Possess established relationships with a range of contacts in agriculture and packaging, and familiarity with their capabilities, pricing strategies, and negotiation tactics.
  • Self-starter and a team player who will thrive in an entrepreneurial environment.
  • Exceptional leadership skills and presence with strong capabilities of leading change management projects in a collaborative and inclusive manner.
  • Strong quantitative and analytical skills to support cost management and process enhancement opportunities.
  • Strong analytical, problem-solving, Lean-thinking, and statistical process control skills.
  • Thorough knowledge of the principles of food safety, FSMA, HACCP, and biosecurity.
  • Superior written and verbal communication skills; ability to speak Spanish is a plus.
  • Ability to solve complex problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists; ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form; ability to resolve problems involving several concrete variables in standardized situations.
  • Bachelor’s degree in business, food science, or related field; MBA preferred.

COMPENSATION:

Compensation will be commensurate with experience including a competitive base salary, bonus opportunity, and competitive benefits package.

CONTACT INFORMATION:

Jonas Hedin, Consultant
704.377.0362