Henry John Heinz: A Man of Uncommon Vision
Henry John Heinz was very much the product of his parents, and the lessons he learned from them echo down into the character of the H.J. Heinz Company today.
Henry’s parents taught him thrift rather than greed. He knew nothing of “get rich quick” business schemes and couldn’t bear the thought of ill-gotten gain. Many of his business ideals and principles, almost unheard of at the time, remain progressive to this day. For example, Henry Heinz did business based on the simple idea that every profit should be fairly earned. One of his mottos still guides Heinz’s purchasing practices today: “Deal with the seller so justly that he will want to sell to you again.”
Another driving principle of Henry Heinz’s that resonates in today’s resource-conscious world was his hatred of waste of any kind. Leading by example, he inspired each of his employees to avoid even the slightest waste of material, time or opportunity.
Finally, Henry Heinz learned from his mother a genuine and enduring concern and respect for every person, rich or poor, and always tried to practice her favorite rule for living: “Always remember to place yourself in the other person’s shoes.”
Individually, the principles Henry Heinz instilled in his company can seem simple and almost quaint. Taken together though, they’re an all-too-rare combination in today’s business world. Fortunately, Henry Heinz himself showed that common sense, decency and social justice is a proven recipe for enduring business success.
"To do a common thing uncommonly well brings success."
Founder Henry John Heinz