ELGINE, BAD. – The Middleby Corp. appeared on Forbes list of top employers for 2021. The list is released amid a labor shortage affecting all industries as companies struggle to recruit and retain workers.
Forbes partnered with Statista to interview 150,000 part-time and full-time employees of multinational companies in 58 different countries. Participants rated their employers on whether they would recommend them to friends and family, and were asked to comment on past employers who stood out, both negatively and positively. Survey participants were also asked to rate their employers based on their image, economic footprint, talent development, gender equality and social responsibility.
The Middleby Corp. provides processing equipment and solutions to the food and beverage industries on three platforms: residential, catering and food processing. The multinational company represents more than 100 companies and brands within these platforms.
Clay Miller, chairman of Burford Corp., one of the many companies Middleby has acquired, said Middleby stands out because, although it is a large publicly traded company, it doesn’t feel it for its employees.
“They have a very lean corporate structure in Illinois, and they allow brands to manage their respective areas of the business,” he said. He added that this lean and flexible business model allows individual brands like Burford to quickly pivot to meet customer needs.
In a sense, the Middleby business largely enables its acquired brands to do the best while providing a global footprint and resources to strengthen and foster growth.
“We all work in the same industry, the food and beverage industry, but we are individual brands that retain our founding cultures and
stories, ”Miller said.
This creates a very diverse Middleby network with unique perspectives.
“At the heart of Middleby is innovation, and they definitely encourage it,” Miller said. “But the company understands that innovation inherently comes with a risk of failure. This allows us to make quick decisions at the local level because you know that if you go in the direction of innovation, you will get the support of the company and the satisfaction of the customer.
As a company that has grown through acquisitions, it would be easy for Middleby to integrate small businesses into its own culture, but Mr Miller said that was not the goal and it was was what caused the company to attract this level of attention.
“The mindset is not to merge and create something huge in Chicago,” he said. “There is no merger, no relocation. You are in your local community where your brand means something. The idea is to grow and improve what you already have.