ConnXus+ member, and promotional product and uniform supplier, Way To Be, recently shared with us their philosophy on “every step is a step” and how they were able to gain contracts with Fortune 500 companies like McDonald’s and Autodesk.
The Way To Be founders, Wayne Beasley and Alan McIntosh, go way back—over 25 years to be exact— as entrepreneurially-spirited colleagues at a McDonald’s Corporation accounting center. Their determination to start a business of their own– coupled with a passion for serving customers with enduring care– led the two young colleagues to form their company, Way To Be, in Hayward, California, in 1993.
“We started off selling T-shirts out of our trunks, our office was in an actual garage, and today we’ve grown to become a supplier of high volume promotional merchandise, apparel and uniforms to mid-large size companies,” reflects Beasley.
Today the promotional products and uniforms company is certified as a Small, Local and Emerging Business (SLEB) in Alameda County, CA, a California Unified Certification Program Disadvantaged Business Enterprise(DBE), and a Western Regional Minority Supplier Development Council (WRMSDC) Minority Business Enterprise(MBE). View Way to Be’s complete list of certifications here.
Back in 2004, Way To Be scored a major contracting milestone when they partnered with McDonald’s Corporation to supply the Mcdonald’s national uniforms program. McIntosh reflects, “The addition of the program significantly grew our sales, increased our purchasing power with larger volumes, and diversified our business beyond merchandise and apparel. We grew from a promotions company into a sophisticated custom uniforms company.”
This breakthrough in their company’s history loops back to their humbling company philosophy thatevery step is a step. “While we have certainly reached some major milestones, we’re most grateful for the small accomplishments that ultimately generate the big wins, such as wow-ing our customers, never settling and taking care of our community and teammates,” says McIntosh.
A ConnXus+ member since 2011, Way To Be continuously seeks strategic opportunities through the ConnXus opportunity finder and bid-match notifications, and also passes along fitting opportunities to MBE’s within their network.
Way To Be’s top services, branded merchandise and apparel, uniforms, and turnkey e-commerce company store solutions, have been recognized twice by NMSDC Supplier of the Year Award (2011 and 2013). Additionally, the promotional company won the 2014 Teamwork Award, as well as the 2014 Inclusion and Diversity Award from McDonald’s Supply Chain. Way To Be has also been selected as one of four Bay Area companies to provide products for this year’s Super Bowl.
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