He talked about his journey with the company – his “Path to CEO,” as the event was called – which took him through Augusta and Atlanta in Georgia, and Oxford and Birmingham, Alabama. He also showed a video about the history of Coca-Cola Bottling Company UNITED and talked about the core values of the company – quality, excellence, integrity and respect.
“You can have a great strategy, but if you don’t have the right culture, it’s not going to matter,” Sherman said. “The quicker you learn that success is not only about you, the quicker you will be successful. I feel grateful, actually, for having the opportunity and honor to be able to be here and share my story. Just a kid from Augusta, Georgia, who got luckier then he intended to.”
Terra Carroll, President and CEO of the North Augusta Chamber of Commerce, said the Power Lunch series is a quarterly luncheon geared toward higher level executives in different companies. “Him being local from our area, I thought it was really important to share that story,” she said.
Terry (wife) and Anne (mother) Sherman also attended the luncheon with John, along with several employees from Augusta Coca-Cola. Several elected officials were in attendance as well, including North Augusta Mayor Pro Tem David McGhee, who left inspired by Sherman’s story and thoughts. This Power Luncheon was sold out.