FreshSource's Robert Thompson Shares Gratitude for Frontline Team Members and Vendor Partners
SANTA ANA, CA - It’s easy for things to fall apart in times of crisis, for communication to break down, and communities to gravitate toward their differences instead of the similarities. I get the strong sense that in our industry these are not the elements that define our actions in a crisis—but rather resiliency, unity, and strength do. Robert Thompson, Founder and CEO of FreshSource, is tapping these qualities as he takes up the goal of bolstering a unified front and generating gratitude within his own company and the industry.
“We deeply appreciate our entire team and all of our vendor partners who make this business work so successfully. This past month, with contributions and help from our vendor partners, we presented front-line team members with gift cards to show our support during these trying times,” Robert says, pausing to reflect on the climate of today. “Everyone’s efforts during such difficult times do not go unnoticed. We hope that FreshSource employees take pride in the fact that our company gets to be the steward and a vehicle of our vendor partners’ generosity.”
The gesture most surely has paid it forward.
Robert shares that the actual inception of the idea for this gift came from one of FreshSource’s retail partners who wanted to do something for the front-line workers at the store level.
“Since our vendor partners weren’t spending money on travel and other areas of their business, the retailer thought they might be interested in offering a small token of appreciation to the grocery store front-line workers,” Robert says. “The response from our partners was overwhelming! In a matter of days, we raised over 8,000 dollars and purchased gift cards from the local businesses right around each of the grocery stores that we visited.”
These gifts were a win-win for all as they supported nearby businesses such as Chick-fil-A, Jersey Mike’s, Subway, and In-N-Out, to name a few. Additionally, the store workers were extremely grateful to be recognized with a small token of everyone’s appreciation.
“We could not have brought together this gift without the help of our vendor partners,” Robert adds. “We definitely want to let our partners know how inspiring it is to see companies like theirs be so willing to give in an effort to assist others. They set a fantastic example that motivates others to make a difference as well. We are proud to be partners with such amazing companies.”
The valuable message that consistently emerges from each employee is one of thanks as additional team members also share with us their thanks and gratitude with me.
“Our frontline grocery partners are working hard from the warehouses to stores, filling trucks, cleaning carts, keeping shelves stocked, all while following the necessary mandated guidelines for everyone’s safety," Shannon Dambach, FreshSource Director of Sales, Southern California, says. "Their selfless efforts deserve to be recognized. It has been a pleasure handing out gift cards. We can feel the smiles behind those masks.”
Additionally, Mike Casazza, President of FreshSource Southwest Divisions, could only echo that great thanks felt by all FreshSource team members.
“Our goal at FreshSource has always been to make a difference. It is inspiring to see how the retailers, vendor partners, and frontline workers have come together to fight this pandemic. The commitment to the community and customers is going on 24/7, with so many people working behind the scenes," Mike reflects. "As we adapt during these unprecedented times, it is amazing to witness the very best come out of everyone in our industry and know that by working together we are making a difference.”
This gesture on the part of Robert, his team, and their partners speaks very much to who FreshSource is as a company. As Robert tells me, there are no limits or boundaries to what his team can accomplish. When the FreshSource team sees a challenge, they get creative and come up with solutions to try to make a difference.
I am constantly inspired by the generosity of others within our industry. It speaks volumes about what each individual and company is made of, and the potential of where we can go collectively from here.