Publix Culture

In the midst of the Great Depression, a man named George W. Jenkins walked away from his secure job to open the very first Publix grocery store. His founding philosophy was to run a better store than his competition. The store was small by today's comparison, but exceptionally clean, beautiful, and well stocked. He was passionately focused on customer value and treated his customers like royalty.

In addition to its reputation for outstanding customer service, what continues to set Publix apart is its family-like atmosphere. Publix believes associates should be treated with dignity and respect, encouraged to express ideas, voice concerns, and be given the opportunity and training to climb the organizational ladder as far as their hard work will take them. Mr. George's philosophy was that if a company creates the proper environment, attracts the best people, and instills the desire to serve, it will prosper in good times and bad.

Publix's prosperity can be attributed not only to the caliber of its associates but also to Mr. Jenkins' commitment to their long-term well-being. Mr. George was a good and kind employer. By sharing his profits and allowing workers to take actual ownership in the company, he created loyal, happy employees eager to serve their customers. The stock ownership and retirement plans he instituted are important incentives and benefits that have helped make Publix the largest employee-owned grocery chain in the United States.

Philosophies

Today the Publix chain still operates on the founding philosophies of George Jenkins, affectionately known as Mr. George.

  • "One of the most important lessons I’ve learned in my business career is that no man puts together an organization on his own."
  • "My daddy taught me how to work, to be proud of a job well done."
  • "Publix is like a smorgasbord, with opportunity spread out for you. Prepare yourself. The opportunities are up for grabs."
  • "Some companies are founded on policy. This is wrong. Philosophy, the things you believe in, is more important. Philosophy does not change frequently and is never compromised."