Bill Smith: Royal Cup Coffee
Many will immediately recognize Bill Smith or William Smith from his time spent with Royal Cup Coffee & Tea.
When Bill Smith was with Royal Cup Coffee, he helped scale the company continuously. He helped build Royal Cup to be the choice supplier of premium coffee and tea for many nationwide restaurant and hotel chains, offices, and many more.
However, having worked for three decades in the family business, Bill decided it was time to move on to newer territories and work towards other goals.
Bill started Double Iron Consulting, a business consulting firm focused on helping various small businesses in the country.
Many may not know that Bill Smith no longer works for Royal Cup Coffee. The Royal Cup board of directors decided to transfer the business to a non-family and professional executive team who will subsequently look after and manage the next phase of growth for the business.
Bill Smith was born into a business family. Those familiar with the history of Royal Cup Coffee will know that the company began its journey as a family business when in 1950, William E. Smith, Bill’s grandfather, purchased the Batterton Coffee Company of Birmingham, Alabama.
During the following decades of its operations, the company grew rapidly. Before long, it became a significant coffee and specialty tea distributor in the United States. After his grandfather, it was Bill’s father and uncle who admirably shouldered the responsibilities of the business.
Accordingly, Bill Smith (William Smith III) was exposed to the challenges and obstacles that a family business may face from a very early age. However, Bill also showed an interest in the business and a willingness to learn from a young age.
He could easily have whiled his time away having fun. Bill, however, was motivated differently. He was eager to get involved and lost no time in making himself useful to the business.
While in high school, he spent his summers interning with Royal Cup and put his best foot forward in learning the ropes of the business from the bottom-up. From running delivery routes to receiving sales orders to working in the production facility, he was already preparing himself for doing well in frontline roles in the business when the time came.
He graduated from Davidson College and later received his MBA from Emory University Goizueta Business School.
Gradually, he began to take on more senior roles within the organization. He spent the ’90s managing several critical aspects of the business, such as expanding its sales territories, conducting business interactions with company customers and partners, and more.
Having thus equipped himself with a strong foundation, he went on to take on more significant responsibilities in the management side of the business (sales areas, supply chain, operations). Eventually, towards the end of the 2010s, he was promoted to CEO of Royal Cup Coffee.
Subsequently, the company broke new grounds under Bill Smith’s executive leadership. In addition to all the hands-on experience, Bill approached the business with a visionary and leadership pursuit.
This was amply illustrated through the manufacturing expansion project and the rebranding initiative the company implemented under Bill’s oversight and leadership and, eventually, the transferring of the reins of the business to a non-family professional executive team during the pandemic-wrought year of 2020.
Royal Cup Coffee continues to thrive in this next phase of growth, led by the next executive team and actively supported by the Smith family.
Bill Smith: Double Iron Consulting
After leaving Royal Cup Coffee, Bill was free to devote his time to something that had been in his mind for some time. Namely, his passion and eagerness to help small to medium-sized private and family businesses in the country.
Having come from a family business background, he was familiar with the various obstacles that family-run businesses often run into while managing their operations.
In fact, although Royal Cup’s history may apparently read like achieving one success after another, only an insider will know about all the difficulties one had to pass through to achieve those successes and materialize one’s visions into reality.
Small businesses often suffer from several difficulties, including ineffective planning, lack of funds, poor management, inability to analyze progress properly, marketing fiascos, and more.
Bill Smith’s take on the matter is that most small businesses suffer and fail to realize their goals and ambitions because they are too busy to stay up-to-date with their day-to-day operations. In the process, the business’s plans for growth and improvement are left either undeveloped or totally unattended.
Double Iron Consulting can be of immense help to family businesses. Because Double Iron Consulting, in addition to providing many customary business consultant services, clearly excels in creating a strategic route for businesses to achieve critical goals.
According to Bill Smith, CEO of Double Iron Consulting, bold ambitions and visions are all too well. However, they only can be realized once you break them down into manageable steps and then persevere to achieve those small steps one at a time. And having a visualized strategic road map plays a vital role in this.
To cite one example, analyzing progress (something many businesses are not too competent at) is a crucial component of strategic planning.
As Bill Smith says, many small businesses are not too good at identifying the key performance indicators (KPIs) for their businesses. However, there is no way to properly analyze the progress of an endeavor without identifying and collecting these essential metrics. And among other things, this is what Double Iron Consulting brings to the table for small business owners—a thorough and well-crafted strategic plan that will propel a business to success. And what better person than Bill Smith to help with that?