#38: Janie Hernandez – Pederson’s Bacon Packaging Team
Janie Hernandez Podcast Transcript
Neil Dudley: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the Pederson’s Farms podcast. We are so excited you’re here. We appreciate you joining us. And we look forward to sharing these conversations with thought leaders from our industry. They’re going to paint a picture from every perspective – consumer, customer, vendor, employee, and peer – that I think is going to be super valuable, and we’re really excited to share. So, thanks for tuning in. Remember don’t tune out, and grab life by the bacon.
Everybody, we’ve got a fun episode. I’m really excited a lady named Janie Hernandez is on the show today. She’s an employee of Pederson’s. Janie, do you know off the top of your head how long have you been working at Pederson’s?
Janie Hernandez: Seven years.
Neil Dudley: Okay, cool. So, she’s been with the team for seven years, and in that amount of time, well, there’s just a lot of education in this lady’s brain about how we do things, and we’re going to explore that. And outside of just the cool fact that she’s kind of like our break room mom, she’s always organizing the Christmas parties or at least a big piece of it. I’m sure there’s people that help. But let’s start with what is your story? Where did you come from? How did you end up working at Pederson Natural Farms in Hamilton, Texas?
Janie Hernandez: Well, at that time I was looking for a job and they said, Janie, have you ever heard of the Pederson Natural Farms? I said what is that? Bacon. I said what do they do with the bacon? Do they bring in the pigs? Do they kill them? Or what? No, they don’t. You just pack them. They cook them in the kitchen, and they put it in tumblers, and then they take it out to us, and we put them in the slicer and we just package. I said, wow, that sounds interesting. That’s something different I would like to do. So, then I tried it. I came and applied and I got in, and I’ve enjoyed it ever since.
Neil Dudley: What all have you done? Do you remember over the seven years, like when you first started, have you always kind of been in the packaging side of the business or did you do some other stuff?
Janie Hernandez: Well, I did like when we had our protein bars, I started there, and then from there I went to the bacon and did the bacon machine where comes out the paper and we have to make sure the paper comes out great. If the paper doesn’t come out-
Neil Dudley: We’ve got to talk about that because that’s a reality. Nobody understands that. When we’re making bulk bacon, there’s a little machine that shoots out the wax paper that goes under the bulk bacon.
Janie Hernandez: Yeah, and if it doesn’t come out, we’ve got to stop it and we’ve got to fix it. But there’s a lot to it. It’s not just there standing and just watching the bacon come by. You have to take care of the bacon, take out the bad bacon, make sure it comes out straight, so the girls can put it in the pockets. And that makes it easier.
Neil Dudley: I want everybody to hear that. If you’ve never worked on a bacon packaging line, you don’t know the intricacies like Janie and her team and the ladies she works with, they can see very important pieces of the puzzle as bacon is flying by them like, uh-oh, that bacon, that package needs to be pulled off and we need to rework it or just lots of things. And you guys and gals take pride in that bacon. Am I right?
Janie Hernandez: Yes. I mean, I get really picky. When I see it doesn’t come out right, I go wait a minute, hold the line. Let’s do this again. Because either the paper comes out too early or it comes too late. We need it all to come together. So, it can all go smooth, like I said, going into the pockets. It makes a big difference.
Neil Dudley: And in our packaging room, we have a big TV on the wall that has a green to red. By the way, hi, everybody out on YouTube. I just put my hand up here and was like, oh yeah, wave to everybody. But it measures our efficiency. It kind of gives you something to look at and say, okay cool, we’re in the green, that’s good. Uh-oh, we’re in the red, that’s frustrating. I think it’s interesting just to think about how a day goes by for anybody and everybody that has a job that does work. You want to enjoy your day, right? You want the bacon to run nice and be in the green and all those things, but that’s not how it goes every day. So, what’s it like on that team on those bad days? How do y’all manage that?
Janie Hernandez: Well, of course, I’m the bacon clown there and I tell them, come on, everybody, let’s get it together. I either do a little dancing mood and it gets everybody in the mood to go, okay, let’s just all together. So, we get after it and we clean and we see where the problem is. We fix it and then we go on. But it’s also you’ve got to have a little fun in there somewhere because if not, it’ll make it a long day. But I mean, we’ve got a really great crew with us, and I enjoy coming to work every day. And you never know what’s going to happen. It’s never the same thing every day.
Neil Dudley: Everything’s- there is a schedule, but how many times does the schedule happen just like it was printed? Not very often. Okay, so what happens in a scenario that something’s going on with the product that you don’t know how to fix?
Janie Hernandez: Well, we have our maintenance people that we call, and they’ll come in right away and try to take care of that problem for us. And they do. We’ve got a little hold, but then they come in and take care of our problem. Then we are on our way, start it up again, trying to finish the day.
Neil Dudley: What happens for a new employee? Like how does that work? What does that look like? I hope people hear this and think, hmm, that sounds fun. I might go like to go work at Pederson’s too.
Janie Hernandez: I mean, when you come in, you don’t know what you’re expecting or what to do, and they’re just standing there. And unfortunately, I’m the go-to girl. I see them, I run to them and say, look, it’s okay. The bacon isn’t going to bite you, if you do it like this, and we do it like that. And then before you know it, she’s rolling or he’s rolling. I mean, you’ve just got to give hand training real quick and it’s fine. Everything goes smooth.
Neil Dudley: What about the temperature of the room?
Janie Hernandez: The room temperature makes a lot of different because of the bacon. Because if it’s not that room temperature, we can’t do anything. We’ve got to stop what we’re doing, make sure that the temperature in there’s nice and cool for the bacon because it’ll get soft if it doesn’t come out right.
Neil Dudley: I mean, this temperature of the bacon when it’s slicing is so important and it’s not a big window. Like it needs to be in a certain couple of degrees for the machines and all the packaging. It’s just intricate. It’s very hard. I should go do some YouTube videos or something of just how all that works. Like we give people plant tours. We have people come through. Matter of fact, I’m curious, what do you think when you see me walking in with five or six guys, we’re all just standing around watching. Does anybody think anything about that? Or is it just like, oh, there’s Neil again?
Janie Hernandez: No, because they do, they say, well, wow, we got people, we’ve got to do this. We’ve got to let them see that we’re all professionals. And everybody does get on the same page, not that we do it just because we’ve got people in there, we do it every day. But they feel important when something like comes. They go wow, they’re going to come see me work. And they can really see what’s going on in here.
Neil Dudley: Well, that’s a fact. That’s part of what makes our company great. I love showing off our team and the equipment we have and the people just seeing- I mean, I was walking around with the guys from Snooze the other day, and one of the girls – I wish I was paying attention enough to remember who it was, but I wasn’t – had the bacon on the wax paper and had scissors cutting off the part that didn’t fit. That’s how important and how good we want it to look. Look, it has to taste amazing, but it needs to look good, too. It needs to be easy to use. There’s a lot of things that have to be true about our product. Tell us a little bit about- I mean, the point of all this is for everybody to get to know Janie a little bit.
Janie Hernandez: Well, yeah, you just have to make it look good because if it doesn’t look good to your eyes there, it’s not going to look good at the store or restaurant, wherever you go. It’s got to look good. It’s not just there, but when you see it anywhere, you go, oh, I know that, that’s Pederson’s bacon. And I’ve heard it. I’ve gone a lot of places and they always say, I wear a cap or a shirt, and they go, hey, we’ve bought bacon from there and it was delicious. It’s not the same as the stores. And I’ll go well, it is good bacon, not just because I work there, but it’s really good bacon.
Neil Dudley: You take some home sometimes, don’t you?
Janie Hernandez: Oh, I take boxes home. Because my kids always ask, mom, gives us some bacon so we take bacon home.
Neil Dudley: Right. What’s some of your favorite things to cook? Like it doesn’t have to be bacon. But do you have a favorite thing that you put bacon in?
Janie Hernandez: Yeah, I have avocado, stuffed avocado bacon wrap, wrapped baked potatoes, I mean, mushrooms, the corn on the cob. If you’ve never tried it, try it. It’s delicious.
Neil Dudley: Bacon wrapped corn on the cobb?
Janie Hernandez: Yes. You wrap the bacon on the corn on the cobb.
Neil Dudley: Then how do you cook the corn?
Janie Hernandez: Well, the corn, it cooks because of the bacon.
Neil Dudley: But on the grill or in the oven?
Janie Hernandez: On the grill or in the oven. If you cook it in the oven, it is exactly one hour. Outside-
Neil Dudley: Exactly one hour. What temperature?
Janie Hernandez: At 350, and outside, just until it gets crispy, you know it’s ready.
Neil Dudley: See, there you go, everybody. That’s a fun recipe you should try. I’m going to go try it. I’ve never even thought about trying bacon wrapped corn on the cobb. Thanks. There you go. That was a little nugget I didn’t even expect to get in this conversation. I wonder about your family. I mean, I know a little bit about them, but not a lot, not as much as I wish I did. I think people that buy Pederson’s bacon also appreciate and want to know the money they’re spending is helping other people like them. What’s your household look like? Do you have husband, kids, grandparents? Like this paycheck that you earn working for Pederson’s, how does that help you?
Janie Hernandez: Well, it helps me with my car payment, of course, and my utilities, if not, I wouldn’t have live water, but it does help. And it’s just like my kids. I have three kids. I have a boy and two girls. I have two grandkids, a boy and a girl, and one granddaughter- two grandsons, excuse me. But when they know I’m coming to visit, “Grandma, bring us some bacon.” So, I have to. We are getting ready for a quinceañera next week. So, they’ve already got their order done. Bring me some bacon, grandma, so I’m bringing bacon.
Neil Dudley: Awesome, you said it. What is a quinceañera?
Janie Hernandez: A quinceañera is a young lady turning 15 to become a woman, and she is not able to date or nothing until after she’s 15. After she’s 15, she can let her hair down, do her nails, cut her hair, whatever she wants to do. But until then, she’s got to stay plain Jane until she’s 15. And then she’s able to date after that. Sometimes they wait longer, but they will give her the okay, you can go out now.
Neil Dudley: Who ever decided that? Is that a part of a religious thing? Is that a culture thing?
Janie Hernandez: Yes, it’s from way back yonder. It’s always been like that. They introduce her from a girl to a woman. And it’s amazing. My two daughters, I’ve done it to my two daughters. Now it’s going to be my granddaughter. So, I’m really happy and really looking forward to it and I’m so excited.
Neil Dudley: And they get dressed up. It’s a big party.
Janie Hernandez: And our grandma’s, so me, I picked an outfit and I go I don’t know if they’re going to approve of it, but who cares, I’m the grandma.
Neil Dudley: You get the right.
Janie Hernandez: I’m probably going to shock everybody but it’s okay.
Neil Dudley: Well, I think it’s just awesome that the families come together like that. The kids get really put on a pedestal. I don’t know about the Jewish culture either, but they do these bar mitzvahs and they’re, I think, a similar kind of thing. I probably should do some research on that so I really know. Because I think our products are part of those celebrations. That’s a cool thing about- when you make food, your brand, the thing you work on every day gets to be a part of these people’s celebration. And I just love that. How many people that you work with every day at Pederson’s do you think have seen our products in stores?
Janie Hernandez: Well, a few because a lot of them don’t like to go out shopping, but I tell them where it’s at and they go really? I go yeah, go and check it out and you see it. And then they go, well, we didn’t know that. And I said yeah. And a little bit of word out and then they’ll go and check it out. But yeah, because I’ve seen it too and I’ll go, wow, look at this. And I’m proud that I work for Pederson. Cause I said I made that, I know I had something to do with that. It’s awesome.
Neil Dudley: It is fun. It is fun to say. I think everybody in the company is proud of it.
Janie Hernandez: Bacon, sausage, you see it all there, breakfast sausage too. It’s awesome.
Neil Dudley: That’s right. Now, we’ve got to clear this up. It’s a very important thing. I want to make sure we have this on the podcast so everybody knows. Who always wins the dive for the grape or the pecan in the cool whip or whipped cream every year at Thanksgiving? Not Neil. I’ll answer for you. Neil always wins that.
Janie Hernandez: Yes, go Neil! And he’s disappointed sometimes when he doesn’t get- so we sometimes hold it until he’s able to come and play with us.
Neil Dudley: That’s right. It’s fun stuff we do. I think you help facilitate that. Everybody, all the team at Pederson’s facilitates those fun times. We’ll play Loteria. Now, for anybody that doesn’t know what that is, that is bingo in Spanish.
Janie Hernandez: Yeah, Spanish bingo. It gets everybody excited. Everybody gets into it. Now everybody’s asking me, when are we going to play that game? I’ll say, well, it’s almost time, so hang on. We get everybody involved, everybody.
Neil Dudley: Now, another thing you do that I really appreciate because I know how hard the work is, and that is volunteering at Bacon Bash.
Janie Hernandez: I enjoy that very much.
Neil Dudley: Tell everybody a little bit why. Why would you go volunteer your time? You could be doing something with your family, or you could be having another job. Why would you go volunteer and give your time and work so hard? Because it’s hot and it’s hard work.
Janie Hernandez: It’s just that everybody needs help. These are for the children with diabetes one, and I would never want it to happen to my family. And if I was in need, I know that I did my part, and hopefully they would come around to help my family as well in the future. But it’s really a great thing to participate in.
Neil Dudley: And then outside of the hard work, is there ever a little fun to be had too?
Janie Hernandez: Oh yeah. It’s all that food and all that drinking going on, but after all you’ve done your job. But it really comes down to a great experience. Y’all need to go out there and check it out.
Neil Dudley: Yeah. Well, and I just want to- I’m also kind of trying to promote Pederson’s team members volunteering because we need volunteers. You always come volunteer.
Janie Hernandez: I try to get everybody involved, but sometimes they’re scared, but they’ve never done anything like that, but we’re going to break them in.
Neil Dudley: That’s okay. I mean, it’s understandable. Like everybody has this other life outside of work. Like you have family to take care of. You have other responsibilities. So volunteering is hard. It’s not easy. You have to give up your time and it typically is hard work. I mean, even shout out to the teams that come compete at Bacon Bash because they really, they put their money up. We give them bacon, but they have to come with all the other ingredients, and they cook and it’s just tough. It’s tough for those people kind of behind the scenes or doing the cooking that may not get the credit they deserve. Of course, yes, everybody come buy tickets, come to Bacon Bash. It helps us help others. And that’s what we want to do. I think, as Pederson’s as a company, part of our corporate expectation is we help others. One way we help others is we make great product, great food that they can feel good about feeding their family. But also, we do charity. We make sure we try to help raise money or even awareness to help others. Okay, in your seven years at Pederson’s, what is the one thing that you just wish you could change? Look, everybody should know Pederson’s isn’t perfect. Like we need to get better at things. If we do this podcast and we only talk about, oh, all the great fun, perfect things, everybody’s going to eventually realize, well, this is BS because they’re not painting the whole picture. And I might should even start painting this part of the picture earlier in the conversation. So, people understand this isn’t just about how we’re great and Janie’s great and, yay, this is all fun and Pederson’s has it all together. We don’t. We’re trying to figure it out all the time. Do you have anything top of mind?
Janie Hernandez: Oh yes. It’s always training. I think that we should hire somebody just to train the new people or take them around and then-
Neil Dudley: See, why didn’t you say that a minute ago when I was talking about the new people?
Janie Hernandez: Well, I’m just saying now, now we’re talking about it, that we do need to hire somebody, that one person or two people to go around, and sometimes they don’t know what they’re getting into, just to show them what it’s about. And then have a conversation with them when you’re done showing them around – what do you think? Do you think you could handle this? Do you think you can come in in this cold and stand there? Because you don’t sit, you’ve got to stand there in line. And do you think you could do that? Is it something that you would like to do? Because people come and go. But I think that they get scared because it’s like throw them in the fire, they don’t know what they’re doing, and they think they’re not going to do it. So, the first thing they do is quit. And so, I think that for us to hold these people, to come in, train them right, show them what’s going on. It’s not going to be easy, but just to hold in there, give us a try and you can make it. Training is important.
Neil Dudley: Yeah, I think you’ve got to do it for two weeks just to get your body-
Janie Hernandez: You’re not going to go fast like everybody else, everybody has been there longer. I mean, but a lot of girls pick it up pretty quick. They go, oh, okay. Because there’s a backside and frontside of the bacon. And if you don’t do it right, you can see it on your board or your paper. Wait a minute, turn it around. They don’t go that way. How do you know? And then you’ve got to show them that this is the difference, and they go oh. And then they get the hang of it and then they start doing it correctly.
Neil Dudley: See, that’s why we just have to talk for a little while because the frontside and backside of the bacon that’s-
Janie Hernandez: A lot of people don’t realize that, but it is.
Neil Dudley: And the training’s important. I have to raise my hand as partly the reason we are the way we are with training is that’s how I did it. Like anybody I ever worked with – Hey, you want a job? Come on, stand there, get to work. That was about it. There wasn’t any–
Janie Hernandez: And they get scared, overwhelmed.
Neil Dudley: Sure. That’s very overwhelming. Look, I would challenge anybody, and this could even be kind of fun, reporters, anybody out there that’s in the media business or even social media influencer, if you think you can handle standing on a bacon line with these ladies, come try it. This is an open invitation. If you listen to this podcast and you want to come stand on the line and try to keep up with them one time, that’d be a lot of fun to try. But that’s exactly what new employees go through within our team. They get put right in with the top-notch, been there a lot of years people, and I totally can see how that’s so overwhelming, and especially if the bacon’s not right, like it’s not running good and it’s just piling up. You see people get frustrated in there. Like every other package has to come off and get reworked. That’s frustrating because you know it’s just slowing you down. It’s hard to actually rework it and make it look just as good as it did coming off the line.
Janie Hernandez: Yeah. We just had a new girl a while back, her name is [inaudible 22:17] and she was working by herself on the table and the bacon was getting piled up. And I saw her from across the room from where I’m at. And I told her, I said, “Don’t look at that. Look at what you have in front of you. That’ll be okay. The girls will come around, they’ll come and help you take care of it.” And she was about to quit. She was going to cry. She goes, “I can’t do this.” I go, “You can do it.” And she did. And she thanks me now for it. And she goes, “If it wasn’t for you, I would have been gone.” I said, “No, it’s okay because the bacon ain’t going nowhere. The bacon ain’t going to go nowhere. The girls will come around, they’ll help you.” And they did. And she goes, “Oh my God, I was going to quit. I was overwhelmed with all that bacon on the table.” I said, “It’s okay.”
Neil Dudley: It happens to everybody. It is not your fault. It’s just the way it is.
Janie Hernandez: We need more people. But it’ll work. Everybody will come around to help. And then when I saw her too, and our line was down, I went over there and told her again. I said, “It’s okay. You’ll be all right.” She was like, “Thank you. Cause I was fixing to cry.” She was about to cry. She had tears in her eyes. I said, “No, don’t, it’s okay.”
Neil Dudley: That’s why I challenge somebody to come. I promise you- Well, we should just film me trying it. I mean, look, I did stand on the line, I did package bacon years ago. I haven’t done it in a long time. I know I would be way out of my league just trying to keep up. Everything’s changed since I was doing it every day.
Janie Hernandez: Yeah, and the machines are faster, so you’ve got to keep up with the machines.
Neil Dudley: You said another important thing there for a minute – we need more people. And so that training helps us keep the people that come, you helping new people that feel overwhelmed is an important part. Like it is a family. We spend more time with the people we work with a lot of times than we do our family. So, it’s such an important piece of recognizing a coworker that is getting stressed, getting overwhelmed. And there might be already stressful things happening in your life. So, then you come to work and you get in another stressful situation. That just gets really tough. So, we all have to kind of lift each other up and help in those situations.
Janie Hernandez: Yeah. And like I said, we’re all family. And then, I’m not a supervisor or nothing, but they feel comfortable coming to me with questions and stuff about anything. And I said, well, we’ll get an answer, don’t worry. And then they all look at me and they go, “Well, why don’t you be a supervisor?” I said, no, I guess they would rather have me, the people person, come to then having that. I said but I enjoy what I’m doing. I’ll help you, and I always try to help everybody there.
Neil Dudley: I think that’s a great insight for anybody that’s on a team and you maybe you aren’t the supervisor, we’re all leading. You lead the team as much as the supervisor leads the team, as much as I lead the team, probably way more than I lead the team. And the truth, like how often do I really see you? Not very often. I’m just doing other things and taking care of other pieces of the business. We all have kind of what we’re good at. And then the fact is there’s not room for 500 supervisors. You can only have so many supervisors. But I think we all have to think about that. And I think you pointed it out great.
Janie Hernandez: And I sometimes laugh, I go they’re probably going to kick me out, with you too, they will probably throw us out the window. They go why? I said I’ve been in the office already about three times. I go they’re going to go oh my god, here she comes again. And then Chrissy says, “No don’t worry. It’s okay” with her little smile. And then I’m saying to myself, yeah right, I bet you, you just want to kick me out the door and say again? But no she’s cool.
Neil Dudley: Well, what’s an example? Like why do you feel that way? Cause I don’t- that’s interesting to me that you’d feel that way. You’re going up to the office with- you’re not just griping to be griping or like, tell me, give me an example. Why do you feel that way?
Janie Hernandez: Well, because y’all don’t realize that these girls or men that work there want to say things and they don’t want to say it because they don’t speak really good English. And then I go it doesn’t matter. Say what you’re going to say and they say no because you say it and I understand it and then they understand it, and we’re all good. And I said, okay, but it’s okay, y’all can go ahead and try to say it. Next time, I’m going to let y’all say it.
Neil Dudley: You’re talking about when you’re playing the role of translator. That’s another interesting thing we should talk about. Like, what’s that like for you? I mean, you’re talking about it a little bit, but it’s so valuable within our company. That’s one thing that’s very valuable about you – you speak two languages, and we have team members who really speak only Spanish. They are really uncomfortable trying to communicate in English. I know what that feels like. I’m pretty uncomfortable trying to communicate in Spanish. My Spanish is always in the wrong order, just not good. Tell everybody that’s listening a little bit about your translator role and how that comes about. And it’s interesting, I’m glad everybody that works at Pederson’s, Chrissy, me get to hear that a little bit hard for you too, because you have to come up there and think, uh-oh, they’re tired of me coming in here. I think everybody really values that.
Janie Hernandez: Maybe not, but it’s just that I go with different people and they have different- the matters are different, but they feel comfortable. And I ask, why don’t you go and ask someone-? “No, no, no, we want you because we trust you. We want you. We don’t want to tell everybody.” They don’t want everybody to know their business. I say no, nobody’s going to know. And I ain’t going to tell nobody. It’s just between me and them. And they’ll go, okay, let’s go. So, we go. That’s why they’re with me because they know what I’m saying and I’ll say it back to them, and they’re more comfortable with that. If they wanted anybody to know, they say we’ll just tell right in front of everybody. And they don’t like that. They want their stuff to be kept to them and the people in the office.
Neil Dudley: Yeah. I think we all should have a little bit of confidentiality. And it is really cool. I appreciate you I just want to say personally; I think that’s very nice. It’s very respectable that people can trust you and know, okay cool, I’m going to go say some things, I need to say some things to the HR people of this company that I don’t want everybody to know, and I’m taking Janie because you’ve built that kind of respect that okay, cool, whatever is said, you’re not going to go tell everybody else.
Janie Hernandez: It’s like Luke too. The guys, they want to talk to Luke and they don’t know exactly how to tell him. I said, well, let’s go, let’s go and talk to him. And it gets done. It gets taken care of. They always tell me I appreciate you going with me. I say no problem. Anything else? Let me know, I’d be glad to help you.
Neil Dudley: Okay. We need to do better at training. Was there anything else? We’re getting close to 30 minutes already. I mean, it goes by fast. I just try to think, okay, the listeners, what are some other things that they’d be interested in that just tells them a piece of the Pederson story that they can’t get any other way?
Janie Hernandez: A lot of people don’t even know Pederson’s exists. So it’s good to advertise. I think advertising more, I think advertising through the radio stations would be great, so they will know where to come and apply if they are looking for a job because everybody needs a job. And they are scared that they’re probably too old to get a job, but those are also the people that we need because the younger people come in, they get tired, they don’t want to work anymore – this is enough, I already earned enough. But then I have to tell them, look, don’t you want a car? Don’t you want a place of your own? Yeah. Well, you got to stick with it. You got to work. And go and help your parents. They don’t have to ask you, just help them, give them a handout – here, here’s a hundred dollars for groceries or something, I know it’s not a lot, but it does help. Once you have a job, you learn responsibilities.
Neil Dudley: I mean, I want to say yeehaw. I mean, Janie, that’s just great advice. That’s great advice for a younger generation from the perspective of a mom, a grandma. You’ve been there. I mean, I want my kids to hear that. Appreciate the things you have and you’re given and the hard work that is put into it for you to have it. And what would be really, really appreciated and cool is you recognize that and you give a little back. And I don’t know how to change this thought process of oh, okay cool, I’ve got enough money to do what I want to do, now I’m done. I want to build some inspiration in them where they know they can be bigger, better. Why stop? Like you’ve got enough now, don’t you want more for your life? Anyways, I think that’s important. I’m glad you’re telling people that. It’s good.
Janie Hernandez: Well, yeah, I mean, it’s important because our parents taught us well, but then we learn from that and we take it beyond that. And we do things that we’ve never done before. Like I didn’t know what vacations were. My parents were always- well, my dad was always working and we didn’t have vacation. And then I said, well, I’m going to do that with my children. So now we go on vacations, and I didn’t even know what a vacation was. But we learn, and then they’re showing their kids what that is. It’s time to be with the family, enjoy yourself. It’s work, yes, but it’s always time to play as well. But working is very important, to get a job and stay with it. You’ve got to enjoy it.
Neil Dudley: Sometimes it’s not enjoying every minute. It’s appreciate the good thing you’re doing, stick it out. And then, oh, hey, that day was fun, let’s remember that, have gratitude for that day where the bacon ran just perfectly and you got done early and all those kinds of things. Because there is nobody that ever just gets a perfectly happy job, career all the time. Sometimes it’s just grind it out and make it happen. Okay so, last things last – last things last, that didn’t really make sense – but before we leave, tell everybody do you have a favorite Pederson’s product, and if you do, what is it?
Janie Hernandez: Well, it’s our smoked bacon. That’s the best thing to do with all-
Neil Dudley: Not the chorizo?
Janie Hernandez: I don’t really care for chorizo.
Neil Dudley: Period, or ours?
Janie Hernandez: No, any kind, I don’t like it. I love the bacon. Like I said, I get very creative. You should just see all the stuff I make for Easter with the bacon.
Neil Dudley: You’ve got to take a picture of it and we’ll post a little link to it.
Janie Hernandez: I’ve shared a lot of recipes with the girls there and they’ve tried it and they go, wow. Even with Josh, Josh loves cooking. And I told him about the potato wrap too with the bacon. It’s a stuffed potato and you wrap it with bacon, and when you cut it up, open it apart, you’ll go what? And it’s not salty. It’s just crunchy because of the bacon. It’s awesome. But yeah, I’ll do that. The bacon on the stick with syrup and pecans, that’s really good too. I made that for the parties.
Neil Dudley: Yeah, that’s good. I’ve ate it. Janie, thank you so much for taking this time to sit down and be a part of the podcast. This conversation I think will make other people on the team feel more comfortable coming and being a part of the conversation. I think it’d be really fun to have you translate one of these podcasts with one of our Spanish speaking people, that’d be kind of fun.
Janie Hernandez: Oh, that would be nice. That way people who don’t know about it in Spanish, they would really enjoy it.
Neil Dudley: That’s right. So, everybody, this is Janie Hernandez. She is, I think I’ve put in your title that you are a bacon packaging team member at Pederson’s outside of all those other – translator, break room mom, that stuff too. We just really appreciate you. And I hope everybody gets now a little more insight into the real people behind the food that Pederson’s Farms makes. Thanks for coming. Okay, everybody, come back next time. We’ll be talking to somebody else I guarantee you’ll have a chance to learn something from. I don’t know why I say that every single time, but I do want you to keep coming back because I love these conversations. I think it gives everybody a chance to learn something about our company. See you later.
Hey, everybody. Thank you so much for listening to this episode of the Pederson’s Farms Podcast. It’s been a blast bringing this to you, and I sure hope you enjoyed it and found value. If you did, tell a friend, share it out on social media, hit that subscribe button, or go check us out at pedersonsfarms.com. We sure hope you do. And thanks for being here.
Visit us online at www.PedersonsFarms.com
(2:04) – Introducing Janie and her time with Pederson’s over the past 7 years
(5:41) – How do y’all manage bad days?
(7:16) – What does the new employee experience look like?
(8:41) – What’s the feeling when management comes in to watch the line?
(10:57) – What are some of your favorite things to cook?
(15:08) – Seeing the products in the wild as an employee
(17:01) – Volunteering at Bacon Bash
(19:34) – What is something you wish we could improve on as a business?
(27:38) – Janie’s role being bilingual
(30:44) – Advice to younger workers: You need to work hard!
(34:03) – Janie’s favorite Pederson’s product