Well, we have reached the end of our series about the people who make “Always Smooth, Never Bitter” Cameron’s Coffee a reality. For those who have followed us on this journey, we have met Bill, our lead coffee buyer; Patrick, our Roastmaster and certified Q-grader; Paige and Jose, two of our roasters; Tom, who trains our roasters; Margarita, one of our packaging machine operators; and last time we chatted with Dora and Sheila from our Quality Department.
Today we meet our CEO, Bob Waldron. Bob joined the Cameron’s team back in 2015, and has worked hard to make sure Cameron’s continues to do what it does best: make great tasting coffee.
“All of us at Cameron’s have a single purpose: to elevate the at-home coffee experience,” Bob says. “And that purpose drives everything we do, with the goal of producing products that always deliver on that promise.” Gesturing to his coffee mug, he says, “You might notice we don’t offer cream and sugar when we serve guests coffee here. That’s because our coffee is roasted to taste great all by itself, without adding all that stuff. No added calories, either.”
Evidently it’s working, because Cameron’s has been one of the fastest-growing coffee brands for the past four years. “We want to grow, because we want everyone to be able to fill their first cup in the morning with the best coffee possible, coffee that’s always smooth and never bitter.”
Walking from his office to the roastery, fully masked and socially distanced, of course, Bob knows everybody we see. But it’s also clear there’s a lot going on. “Yes, we’re very busy,” Bob says. “We’re trying to keep up with a lot of growth without ever compromising on quality. It’s both challenging and a lot of fun,” he adds. “I would say that we work hard and play hard, with an optimism to everything we do. Many of our customers call us before other roasters when they need coffee fast or a special order, as they know we will deliver. It’s who we are as a team.”
As he greets people he describes some of the steps in the process they are responsible for. “But it’s critical we stay focused. One of the most important things I do is to bring a clear vision and strategy, with a focus on the critical priorities. And to maintain a winning, optimistic culture.”
“Focus often means saying ‘no,’” Bob says. “One of the perks of working here is I get to try a lot of different coffees as we explore new varieties and flavors. But if the quality isn’t up to our standards, I have to say ‘No, we’re not going to do that.’”
He says one of the opportunities that often comes up from people outside the company is coffee shops. “People wonder why we don’t have coffee shops like so many other brands do. But, like I was saying, our coffee is made to taste great on its own. That’s a big difference from most coffee shops that are really trying to up-sell you to a fancy drink loaded with fat and sugar, and a big fat price tag to go with it.”
Taking a sip from his mug, he muses, “Sometimes you can’t even taste the coffee in some of those fancy drinks.” He pauses for another sip. “No,” he says, “we don’t and never will have coffee shops! It’s all about focus, on making the best coffee for your favorite mug at home. It’s that single-minded focus that enables us to promise that our coffee is always smooth and never bitter.”
Sounds like a promise worth keeping!