Pursuit of excellence Featured

8:01pm EDT June 30, 2011

[caption id="attachment_32499" align="alignleft" width="180" caption="Joseph Slawek, president and CEO, FONA International"]

[/caption]

Joseph Slawek wanted to build an organization that could compete with the largest international flavor companies across a range of market segments and that could also connect with customers as only a small company could. Slawek, founder, president and CEO of FONA International, had a desire to be both high-tech and high-touch. That difference in the organization is what has made it special and successful.

Slawek knew he was taking a risk when he founded FONA in 1987. It meant walking away from a lucrative 15-year career as a leading account executive in the flavor industry and taking an 80 percent pay cut. Committed to supporting his dream of starting his own business, he braved the tremendous entrepreneurial sacrifices that come with such a large investment of time, money and heart. Under his leadership, FONA started to grow and hasn’t looked back.

FONA was founded to bridge a gap in the flavor industry and deliver both world-class technology and the speed and flexibility of a service-oriented company. The company has since earned a reputation as a service leader by delivering more than 20 years of innovative programs and practices.

Slawek has worked to make sure FONA stays ahead of the curve in corporate structure throughout the company’s more than 20-year history. It’s high-tech, high-touch design, coupled with employees’ empowerment to try new things without fear or failure, fosters partnerships, innovation and creativity.

Slawek also places great importance in the ongoing investment in his employees, teaching the art of business innovation through programs such as FONA’s Project Board and Flavor University.

With thousands of alumni around the world representing companies across the industry, FONA’s Flavor University is one more demonstration of the company’s commitment to customer service and industry innovation. Flavor University courses focus on providing food professionals with a practical understanding of the creation and use of flavors in food product development.

HOW TO REACH: FONA International, (630) 578-8600 or www.fona.com