'I Did It IMI Way'

IMI Cornelius reinforces employee values, conducts global charity effort

Angel Abcede, Senior Editor/Tobacco, CSP

IMI employees team up to construct blankets to help
children removed from abusive homes.

GLENDALE HEIGHTS, Ill. -- Beverage dispensing and cooling equipment supplier IMI Cornelius Inc. yesterday celebrated the 150-year anniversary of its parent company, IMI plc, by reconnecting with its core values and having its 15,000 employees worldwide engage in local charity work.

The event had employees simultaneously participating in "IMI Way Day," a company event that involved employee training on the company's code of ethical and responsible business conduct. All IMI Cornelius facilities worldwide then demonstrated these values by giving back to their respective communities through local charity work.

Jeff Lumsden, president of the Americas for IMI Cornelius, told CSP Daily News that IMI grew over the years into a collection of disparate businesses, each featuring products with little similarity but that of niche, engineered solutions. "We have so little in common from business platform to business platform," he said. "So it's not what we do, it's how we do it. It's our ethics and conduct that represent our brand."

For c-stores, the solution includes fountain equipment designed to keep retailers profitable and on trend. Many of those trends, he said, included health and wellness drinks like smoothies, flavored waters and noncarbonated juices. Another trend was customer-interfacing technology, providing consumers with multiple interactive options.

The IMI Way Day is an annual meeting designed to train all IMI employees on the company's code of conduct using a "STAR" guide, which stands for "stop, think, act and reflect" and helps employees when they are faced with ethical dilemmas at work. The training focuses on IMI's three guiding values of excellence, innovation and integrity.

Officials said these values drive the company's performance and reinforce IMI's commitment to the responsible business priorities of health and safety, energy efficiency, supply management and customer engagement to help meet corporate and social responsibilities.

According to Lumsden, "IMI Cornelius takes its company code of conduct very seriously because we are committed to running our business in an ethical and honest manner and always treating our partners and customers in the same way."

He added, "It is an incredible experience to be able to connect with our colleagues around the world by participating in the exact same training on the exact same day, then rolling up our sleeves and having all 300 of our Glendale Heights employees make a local impact by donating money, time and services to charities in the DuPage County, [Ill.], area."

"Through the planning of this event, it has been humbling to hear stories about just how many children, families and animals in the DuPage area alone are in desperate need of help," said Mike Piehl, communications lead for the IMI Way Day, IMI Cornelius. "Knowing that we can help make a difference simply by donating our time and resources is a driving force for our company."

The following DuPage-area organizations are involved in the IMI Way Day:

  • LifeSource. The largest blood center in Illinois, distributing a half-million blood products annually to 60 area hospitals.
  • My Stuff Bags Foundation. Provides new belongings, comfort and hope to thousands of children each year who must be rescued from abuse, neglect and abandonment.
  • Marquardt School District 15 Elementary Schools. Its mission is to implement an educational program that provides students with skills and knowledge to become productive members of society and lifelong learners.
  • Kids in Need Addison. Helps kids experiencing a parental crisis.
  • Hesed House. Provides food, clothing and shelter for the homeless. 
  • Shriners Hospital for Children, Chicago. Treats children with a host of orthopedic and neuromusculoskeletal conditions, spinal cord injuries, as well as cleft lip and palate.
  • Project H.E.L.P. Home-based parent mentoring and support services to create a safe and nurturing environment.
  • DuPage Animal Shelter. Animal care, control and adoption.
  • Northern Illinois Food Bank. Provides nutritious food to all those in need through internal efforts and those of nonprofit partners.

With North American headquarters in Glendale Heights, Ill., IMI Cornelius is a manufacturer and marketer of premium post-mix beverage dispensing systems, beer dispensers, ice makers, juice and tea dispensers, frozen beverage dispensers and a complete line of accessories. With 12 plants in six countries and sales offices that span the globe, IMI Cornelius products are in restaurants, convenience stores and hospitality chains. IMI Cornelius is a subsidiary of Birmingham, England-based IMI plc.

Angel Abcede, CSP/Winsight By Angel Abcede, Senior Editor/Tobacco, CSP
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