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The Hidden Gem: Listen to Understand, Enrich Lives, Empower Results

Today’s techno-info driven world, filled with instant information and real time access, has accelerated the belief that we all need to be racing somewhere with our business or we will be left behind. This “catch it and ride it while you can” mentality has driven many companies forward in the short term, but the model isn’t sustainable. When companies get bogged down trying to grow, they can create an unnecessary level of bureaucracy that insulates leadership and causes rigidity, stifling the flow of communication. This leaves your team slogging through the mud trying to find their sense of purpose, directing their efforts to figure out what’s next with the company instead of keeping their minds in the game. A business becomes at-risk when responding to the market as a reactionary and not a visionary. It isn’t healthy; there are too many casualties. This compelling need for change in the workplace inspired me to create Produce Therapy®, developed over years of hands-on produce experience.

“TLC’s Produce Therapy catalyzes the evolution of its clients’ operational culture, by facilitating a better understanding of the organization’s core purpose. Whether applied to the office, packing line, or field, TLC’s methods create motivation that comes from a genuine commitment to excellence based on the team members’ desire to contribute to the company’s loftiest aspirations.”

- Edmund LaMacchia

Produce Therapy is designed to promote excellence in the internal culture of your business model. The process uses directed interviews and in-depth discussions to guide strategy, improve team relations, and revitalize the bottom line. A company that is reinvigorated can anticipate and respond to the nuances of the produce space because the perspective has been fundamentally changed. The healthy company can look forward to the future because they have a renewed core purpose, redirected efforts, and a united team able to achieve their goals.

People leave all the time for any number of reasons. But, why lose a trained, competent individual because the company vision wasn’t clear, or the bureaucracy was too cumbersome, or management didn’t create a cohesive message? Exit interviews rarely hit the truth and reviews rarely reveal the depth of mistrust and misunderstanding from employees. A recent study shows 82 percent of people don’t trust the boss to tell the truth, and why should they? Produce Therapy discovers the unique heart of each company and works to make it whole, one person at a time.

“Todd has a remarkable ability to hone in on areas of operation where help is needed. He addressed our structure, culture, strategy, and product offerings with efficiency and effectiveness. He reinforced the fact that this is an industry built on relationships and offered us tangible ways to strengthen our ties to our critical customers. It is obvious that he is in it to make a difference. He continues to support and encourage us through our personal relationships with him. I can’t imagine a better name for his company than TLC!”

 - Michela Calabrese, VP Business Development, Interrupcion Fair Trade

The produce business is no exception.  It doesn’t take an advanced degree in mechanical engineering to find a job in this industry, but to have staying power and to find success it is absolutely necessary to learn how to navigate personalities and form relationships. Can you teach it like you preach it? Good employees are your very best assets and “bad” employees can be turned into good employees, given the right opportunity to thrive.

What does it take? It is critical that you manage your investment. As a leader of people, it’s important to remember that your duty is to bring people alongside, and set the tone for, your business so that it becomes seemingly effortless to get the most out of each individual. When was the last time you asked for the opinion of your staff about the company’s vision, your message to the marketplace, their work environment? It is incumbent upon leadership to continually re-evaluate company culture by taking the time to ask questions, listen to the answers, and understand the motivation behind the individual. It’s human nature to want to be heard and to be made to feel important. When your people feel a sense of worth, work becomes second nature and an outpouring of care for your customer base will ensue. 

“Working with Todd is refreshing and effective. Each of the small successes restore a bit of excitement in work that was starting to feel like a grind, like running in place. We are feeling our evolution and it’s full of promise. With Produce Therapy, we already see the progress, the impact on performance, and the revitalization of the bottom line. This program has helped us position a strategy for a strong team that produces big, moving forward. I have faith in his guidance, and I am satisfied and hopeful with the results. I appreciate his ‘no-nonsense, big picture insights, while rolling up your sleeves’ type of approach. I am very excited we made the TLC investment in ourselves, and in our team.”

- Jessie Gunn, Marketing Manager, Wholesum Harvest

People want to be valued and they want to serve a purpose. We can engender purpose, loyalty, and excellence by being engaged in the lives of our people. Your business is about relationships built within the company, with customers, and with vendors. It is necessary to establish a commonality to nurture your culture. Your business is about becoming personal with your employees, your customers, and your customer’s customer. All businesses are about communication. It is so important that the flow of conversation is just that: a flow that isn’t hindered by a title, a protocol, or a fear of reprisal.

Leaders not engaged in growing people will never get the best out of them or their company. After spending over 30 years in this industry I have come to learn that no company is greater than the sum total of its people. That’s the gem to be found.

Todd Linsky has spent the last thirty years immersing himself in the organic industry at every level. Todd’s experiences range from working as a produce manager for a small nature foods company and working nights on the Los Angeles Produce Market, to time spent in Moss Landing working for the first organic grower/shipper operation, and a rise to a vice presidency at one of the largest organic grower/shipper operations in the country. On his road to success, Todd has grown a sales company from hundreds of acres up to tens of thousands of acres; built over the years with countless handshakes. 

In 2015, Todd formed Todd Linsky Consulting, known as TLC (www.tlc.organic). With the founding of TLC, he then launched Produce Therapy® a dynamic tool that helps companies discover what has a significant impact on their company culture and directs the mood of their business. TLC’s proprietary methods and guidance, challenges the status quo and works to make each day extraordinary.