Employee Highlight – Meet Jim Rategan

In the spirit of summer fun, Asher’s is welcoming yet another new addition to the team! This month, we’d like to introduce July’s employee highlight Jim Rategan as our Midwest Sales Manager. While it might be hot outside, Jim is sure keeping things cool and collected as he begins his journey with Asher’s!

Starting at Asher’s

Asher’s was searching for someone with exceptional leadership skills and the ability to create lasting relationships with customers located further from Asher’s home base in the Midwest region. Our search led us to Employee Highlight Jim as the perfect person to embark on this mission. While we couldn’t wait to bring Jim onboard, COVID put off his scheduled start date in late March to make his official first day on the job July 6th, 2020.       

Jim wasted no time eagerly jumping into his new role! As the Midwest Sales Manager, Jim is currently working with Bob Hollander on a seamless transition as Bob prepares to retire at the end of 2020. As Bob Hollander quotes, “Jim is really enjoying learning all about our company, our chocolates and most importantly our customers, he has a very good attitude and will be a great addition to Asher’s sales team!” Bob is making sure that Jim is set for success as the two work closely together for training. 

Day-to-Day Tasks

There’s plenty to learn as employee highlight Jim begins familiarizing himself with all the ins and outs of Asher’s. To become the new Midwest accounts expert, Jim’s learning all about Asher’s customers, products, procedures and systems. To expand his network, Bob Hollander is introducing Jim to Asher’s customers in Chicago. Jim is getting to meet a lot of new people as he explores the different customers who carry Asher’s products. After Chicago, the plan is to move into Michigan, Indiana and ultimately Wisconsin

While building relationships with existing customers is important, Jim recognizes the opportunities in expanding Asher’s products to even more customers. So, a significant part of Jim’s days are spent researching and reaching out to potential Asher’s customers. This includes wholesale, distribution, retail and beyond. Jim says potential customers could expand beyond our normal scope because the world has changed so rapidly and significantly since March. Therefore, we must be exceedingly creative about where we will develop new customers. This is exactly the kind of initiative Asher’s is thrilled to have Jim bring to our team!

Favorite Tasks

There is always something to keep Jim busy! As a people person, Jim loves talking with customers and learning about their businesses. His trusting and professional nature has even granted him the opportunity to assist a couple of customers with more complex business issues.

Jim isn’t afraid of a sales pitch! He gets a satisfying thrill from identifying new potential customers and getting in front of them to present Asher’s delicious chocolates. He’s particularly fascinated hearing the different strategies customers have used to survive mandatory business closures. Given his expert knowledge, he has creative suggestions to overcome any challenges. But, most of all, Jim loves selling Asher’s!

Free Time

It’s not all work with this Employee Highlight! As a dedicated husband, Jim helps his wife with her successful spiritual growth and energy healing business. From his close involvement with his wife’s practices, Jim has been finding meditation especially satisfying during the recent months. He’s trying new skills and recipes in the kitchen, although his sons, ages 15 and 13, are tough critics! 

On sunny days, you can find Jim outside gardening or birdwatching. He’s a fan of golfing, fishing, and hiking in the forests of Lake Michigan with his 2 Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.

Jim is so very grateful and excited to be at Asher’s! We are lucky to have him and can’t wait to see him grow as a successful leader of the team!