For Jeff Rocke, education – inside and in the field – sets Jenner Ag apart from the rest. “When I started, I knew nothing,” says Jeff Rocke Senior Account Manager. “There was always somebody at Jenner Ag who had the answer and was willing to help me – there still is. That’s what makes Jenner Ag such a successful company; they create an environment where their employees are a family by encouraging them to work together and meet goals as a team.”
Jeff says the culture is like no other, and keeping promises to customers is non-negotiable. “One of the things I have taken away from Jenner Ag culture is ‘Be your word,’” he says. “Our CEO has said that; my superiors have said that, time and time again. It’s what we strive for.”
And being able to keep your word to customers isn’t a one-person job, says Jeff. “When I’m the only person from Jenner Ag that customers see out in the field, they expect those promises I made them to be kept,” he says. “Having people around me that help me to be my word and other employees that are their word makes it easier to do a quality job and keep those promises.”
It’s not just a sale, he says, it’s the start of a relationship. “We do a good job of building relationships with customers. I can sell anybody a machine one time, but if everybody in the company doesn’t take care of that customer from Sales to Parts, Service, Accounting and Administration, and we don’t value their relationship with us, I won’t ever sell them another machine,” Jeff says. “It’s the customer satisfaction that allows us to know it’s not just selling this machine; it’s when 10 years down the road they need another machine, they look to us versus competitors because we valued their relationship.”
Maintaining relationships with customers is possible in large part because of the transparency Jenner Ag offers, Jeff explains. “We always know where the company is at financially; we always know the goals we are striving to hit,” he says. “The transparency is something I don’t think you find anywhere else. You don’t have a clue what the company is up to at a lot of places; previous employers that I had don’t set goals for what you need to hit at the end of each quarter or year. Once you understand the culture and why we do things the way we do, it’s the greatest learning experience. You’ll never find another company that matches what we do.”
Weston Stork, Field Service Technician, is a proud five-year member of Jenner Nation at our Jenner Precision location. “We have a great environment here at Jenner Ag; whenever a new employee starts, they talk about how their old bosses or fellow employees could be aggressive and hard to get along with. You just don’t hear of that happening here; all the managers encourage us to communicate with them and each other,” says Weston.
With Jenner Ag having three separate locations covering different aspects of the industry, it’s important to stay connected. “Just last week I worked with a fellow employee located out of our Harristown office. We were working on a sprayer that was running both application and precision equipment; without both of us there offering our specific expertise, it wouldn’t have gone as smoothly,” he says.
“Jenner Ag encourages all of us to meet our full potential, both individually and as a unit. Since my employment at Jenner Ag began, I have been encouraged to step outside of my shell. I have been told that just because I have a certain job title doesn’t mean that particular skillset is all I can offer the company,” Weston says.
He adds that one aspect of Jenner Ag that allows all three locations to run as a cohesive team is the fact that Jenner Ag plays the Great Game of Business (GGOB). “Other companies in the agriculture industry don’t play the GGOB; that is one of the things that sets us apart,” he says. “The Game brings a level of transparency that creates an open flow of information. We see the financials of the company; we know what upper management is doing with income. It creates an accountability, but it also creates a bond.” A bond that Weston says helps every member of that team work together as one.
When you work at a company that practices transparency the way Jenner Ag does, you need someone to help communicate one of the basic building blocks of any company: the financials. Melissa Koehler is one of the many members of Jenner Nation who share their knowledge with associates, so everyone can understand and be empowered to think and act as owners.
As Corporate Controller, Melissa works closely with the financials of the company. “Coming from an accounting firm, I had a hard time at first explaining to people how to look at tax codes or work with the numbers on their own, and working at Jenner Ag, I learned how to communicate and relay my knowledge in a way other people can understand,” says Melissa.
“Jenner Ag has helped me learn how to effectively teach and share my knowledge with the associates about what the numbers mean and how they can affect those numbers every day. Associates are always eager to learn about the financials and striving to gain that knowledge to better understand the numbers.”
Knowledge sharing just is one of the ways Jenner Ag brings its associates together, Melissa says. Having different departments’ team members interact and discuss ideas on what we can do to maintain and improve the numbers is always something a company should encourage.
“It’s a culture of growth and knowledge sharing. I believe it brings out leadership in everyone. Not just the managers; it gives everyone the tools it takes to be a leader, myself included,” says Melissa.