Tasty Catering recognized in National Study of Exemplar Companies | Tasty Catering Skip to main content

Tasty Catering recognized in National Study of Exemplar Companies

Katherine Legge Memorial Lodge

Research Project Explores Link Between Culture & Profit in Mid-Size Businesses

February 12, 2014 – CHICAGO – Elk Grove Village-based Tasty Catering has been recognized as a national exemplar company as part of the Return on Values (ROV) project. ROV is a three-year, $1 million research initiative that asks the question, In small and mid-size businesses, what is the link between culture and profit?

Researchers are exploring this question through a quantitative longitudinal survey sent to more than 25,000 executives, and qualitative deep-dive interviews at 30 exemplar companies, including Tasty Catering.

“Tasty Catering was selected because of the company’s fierce commitment to its values, and the way it lets these values shape day-to-day decision making,” says Dr. Jim Ludema, ROV principal investigator and director of the Center for Values-Driven Leadership (www.cvdl.org) at Benedictine University. “Tasty Catering’s remarkably engaged team members sustain success through core values, a commitment to transparent financial leadership, and a supportive environment.”

Videos and findings from Tasty Catering are featured on the ROV Project website, www.returnonvaluesproject.com, and will be prominently displayed in publications and other resources going forward. (For Tasty Catering-specific content, please see this link.) Featured videos include:

  • Use Your Core Values to Drive Decision Making: Here’s How
  • Keep Top Talent by Making Them CEO of Their Own Company
  • How to Build People-Centered Culture from the Ground Up
  • Better Bottom-Lines Through Open Book Management

The public is invited to utilize the videos, discussion guides, and other resources available on the website to guide and inspire business leaders and entrepreneurs who want to leverage culture to grow profit.

“We feel honored to be selected as an exemplar company,” says Tom Walter, Chief Culture Officer of Tasty Catering. “This recognition reflects the concentrated efforts of our entire organization to leave our personal cultures at the door and truly live the Tasty Catering values, vision and mission while we are together. We have had a much more harmonious, engaged and high-performance organization since we focused on our culture.”

The ROV Project is a partnership between the Inc. Small Giants Community (www.smallgiants.org) and the Center for Values-Driven Leadership (www.cvdl.org) at Benedictine University.

Dr. Ludema says the study’s early findings show a positive link between culture and profit. “The relationship between culture and profit is through people…and it’s up and to the right. This happens because team members who are cared for create customers who are cared for, and that returns profit to your business. If you’re not leveraging culture to drive growth, you’re missing a big opportunity.”


Tasty Catering is a suburban Chicago-based catering and event planning services company that has been exceeding customers catering needs for more than twenty years. Services span a large variety of events and occasions, from meetings, conferences, employee appreciation events and outdoor picnics to holiday parties, birthdays, milestone celebrations and weddings. Tasty Catering’s many satisfied customers include Abbott, American Airlines, Colgate, CDW, Harris Bank, Mortenson Construction, Navistar, Sherman Hospital and the University of Chicago.

Tasty Catering, 2013 Daily Herald’s Readers’ Choice Award for Best Caterer, 2010 Achievement in Catering Excellence (ACE) award winner, 2010 Governor’s Sustainability award winner, and 2009 Better Business Bureau Torch Award Winner for Marketplace Ethics, is the “go-to” caterer for the Chicago-area. The company is part of the elite group Leading Caterers in America (LCA), has received numerous NICE Awards and has been recognized as a 2012 Workforce Chicago Award Winner, 2012 Psychologically Healthy Workplace, a Crain’s Chicago Business Best Place to Work (2010-2013), a Best Place to Work in Illinois for six consecutive years (2007-2012), and is a Best and Brightest Winning Company (2009, 2010, 2012).

Tasty Catering is part of 80-Nine Holdings, which also includes the Great Game of Business Chicago , It’s My Company Too!, nuphoriq, That’s Caring, The Thought Board and Touhy Capital.

About Inc.’s Small Giants Community
Inc.’s Small Giants Community (SGC) is a global network of small business leaders who define success by more than just their financial bottom lines. The SGC focuses on the companies’ contributions to their communities, a dedication to great customer service and the creation and preservation of workplace cultures of excellence. ISGC is a network within Inc., the top U.S. magazine for entrepreneurs. More information is available at www.smallgiants.org.

About the Center for Values-Driven Leadership
The Center for Values-Driven Leadership offers research, education, and outreach opportunities to help business leaders forge new paths to profitability. It is a gathering place where top executives, entrepreneurs, and thought leaders come together to innovate at the forefront of values-driven business practice. More information about the Center can be found at www.cvdl.org.

About Benedictine University
Founded in 1887, Benedictine University is a Catholic University in the Benedictine tradition. The University focuses on providing a values-centered education designed to prepare people from diverse backgrounds for a lifetime as active, informed and responsible leaders in the world community.

The University offers a wide array of undergraduate, graduate and doctoral programs through its five colleges: the College of Business, the College of Education and Health Services, the College of Liberal Arts, the College of Science, and the Margaret and Harold Moser College of Adult and Professional Studies. More information about Benedictine University can be found at www.ben.edu.


Related Articles