New Belgium Brewery founder Jeff Lebesch and co-founder and his spouse Kim Jordon started the company in their basement in 1991 with a meagre investment after they were refused a loan. They used their station wagon to deliver the beer and because they were producing quality beer they quickly got a recognition and they started generating a handsome profit which help them outgrew the basement.
With the profit they were able to move to another location in a railroad depot where in 1995 they built a state of the art custom brewing facility. This facility houses two brew houses, 4 quality assurance labs and one waste water treatment facility to cleanse their process waters and to create their own energy. The entire facility was also powered by renewable wind energy. I thought that Jeff and Kim operated the company very well and in 1996 they implemented an open management system which meant that the employees were directly involved in operating the company. Quality and Productivity were the fundamental aspect of New Belgium’s business.
From the very beginning they took the approach of not only making sure that they have the highest quality product but also achieving it in such a way that is does not hamper the environment but uses the natural resources in an efficient, responsible and cost-effective manner. They have chosen technology that was cutting edge despite not being proven at that time and it helped the company move forward. The company fully utilized all the available facilities by employing waste water reclamation plan that converts waste water into energy which is again reused by the factory.Quality assurance is pertinent element of the Operations Management.
As the employees of the NBBC became more professional they ensured that the quality of the plant is monitored closely. Thorough process is placed to examine the practices. Although it is very difficult to ensure and maintain the quality of the product consistently the operations management of New Belgian Brewery made sure that the quality stayed the same despite all its growth over the time. They made sure that the entire brewing process from receiving the hops to brewing and bottling all are closely monitored. They did not compromise on the quality of their product even though the quality of their inputs might have varied. As a result, they could maintain the same quality and did not had to compromise on that department.The owners viewed all employee decisions and inputs as a key to the company’s success.
They facilitated some training to the employees so that they understand how all the financials work and how they can sustain better. The owners believed that understanding the financials helped the employees pay closer attention to their own job responsibilities and they learned and came up with solutions that helped to run the company better. After a person is employed for a year they were given some share of the company and were treated as shareholder. This gave them a vested interest in seeing that the company advanced and progressed more and they started to have a say in the overall course of the company. They started to find themselves working with the owners rather than for them. In sustaining healthy financial New Belgium has also been very effective. They were profitable despite their societal and eco-friendly efforts.
The reason for New Belgium’s success are the company’s essential standard, values & beliefs that are intertied with its structure and backing at the executive level. In this company everything is delegated as far down the chain of command as possible making it known as a decentralized organization. Since higher employee involvement is part of the company’s culture, the employees did not need to seek approval from managers in case they needed to implement a change as soon as possible. As the employees are the shareholders, the more profit it makes the more beneficial it becomes for the employees. So, each internal meeting the employees gets more involved and provides feedback from their own roles and perspective and makes decisions in his or her own role that affects New Belgium’s profitability. The smallest little things add up and makes a big difference eventually.
Overall this system helps create a magical vibe in the environment of the company and the employees are happier and works harder towards the greater benefit of the company and helps create a eco friendly environment which is good for the nature.