Interview with Lindee Nance, vice president of marketing and advertising, Harmons Grocery
This article is part of a series featuring business executives who choose to live and work in Utah. If you know of an executive we should interview, please contact us.
Lindee Nance is vice president of marketing and advertising for Harmons Grocery, where she collaborates across operational teams to craft the Harmons story.
Nance is passionate about bringing quality food experiences and education to Utahns, including nutrition awareness to educate consumers where their food comes from. She is also passionate about making food accessible to those in need.
Her love for storytelling has shaped her life and career, and she believes food is a universal language. Nance also believes food is the vehicle that connects cultures and transcends different points of view. For her, there’s no better way to break the ice than breaking bread together.
How did you get started in the industry?
As far back as I can remember, I loved playing in the kitchen and sharing my creations with friends and family. At the same time, I was looking for a change, and Harmons was looking for someone to lead their marketing team. With no retail marketing experience, I tossed a line in the water, and two weeks later, I was sitting in an office with Harmons executive staff. What was supposed to be a job interview quickly turned into a conversation about my personal experiences with nutrition and the food culture of Italy. I had recently hiked the Cinque Terre and learned it was a place near and dear to the hearts of Harmons executives. I knew I’d met my people, so I didn’t hesitate when they offered me a position.
What recent professional accomplishments are you most proud of?
Helping to launch eShop is one of my key accomplishments. I’m a customer, too, and so it was exciting for me to help envision the way we’d translate the Harmons customer service expectation to an online experience. The engagement tools eShop offers customers’ direct communication with a personal shopper trained to be super picky about selections.
Our customers create personal relationships with their shoppers, and it’s been a rewarding challenge to take on because our customers look for convenience, and eShop allows them to save time without sacrificing the experience of shopping.
What drew you to Utah?
I grew up in southeastern Idaho and was raised with a rock-solid work ethic. I was a single mom of a 13-year old daughter and finished my bachelor’s degree while going to school part-time and working multiple jobs when I realized to give my daughter a better life, I’d need to relocate to a bigger market with more opportunity for both of us. Within a year, I found a job in Utah; we packed everything we owned and started a new life. I’ve never regretted that decision and believe both of our lives have now improved.
What do you like most about living in Utah?
There are so many things to love about Utah! I appreciate all the natural beauty Utah offers, the distinct presence of four seasons (though fall is my favorite), and the proximity to some of the most stunning outdoor recreation opportunities in the world.
My family and I enjoy hiking and camping in the national parks. Having access to an international airport is also a bonus. I enjoy traveling. Direct flights from SLC to London, Paris, Amsterdam and more make traveling convenient.
What do you like most about doing business in Utah?
The food scene in Utah is growing, and there are exciting things happening with artisans, especially cheese and chocolate. We have so much talent in this state, and I love being a part of supporting local artisans every day.
Utahns are passionate about caring for their communities. Each year, as we participated in charitable events and set donation goals, our customers step-up and blow us away by their support of those in need. After living through my college days as a single mom on a super tight budget, that stirs a lot of emotion in me.
What advice do you have for individuals considering starting a business, or relocating their business, to Utah?
Get out and talk to people. Learn about the culture of Utah so that you can become a part of it. Visit your farmer’s market and create relationships with the organizations in your neighborhood by getting involved with your community. Utah is rich in the resource of smart, talented individuals ready to contribute innovative ideas.
What is your primary challenge of doing business in Utah?
We are a densely populated state, and from a marketing perspective, there’s a lot of messaging, and it can be challenging to have your voice heard among all the noise. Harmons is creative in finding new ways to reach our existing and potential customers to tell our story.
What is your business philosophy?
It’s simple. Work hard and do the right thing.
A long time ago, I read a quote, and it stuck with me: “Big shots are only little shots who keep shooting.” Everyone has dreams, goals and fears. And when things get tough, the answer is always good food!
Tell me a fun fact about yourself.
I love to play games with my family. We’ll often spend the entire afternoon unplugged from our phones, playing games while enjoying a lunch of our favorite cheeses and charcuterie. It’s all about the food.