Thanks to the recent announcement of “pawternity leave,” 1-week off paid when you get a new puppy, the company, BrewDog, has gone viral. Sources like Cosmopolitan, Stylist Magazine and The Times are just a few of many that immediately began shouting the news across cyber space.
But what is it really like working for the company with Puppy Leave?
When I began my UK visa search, I stumbled across the name BrewDog and looked it up out of pure curiosity. After 5 minutes on their webpage, I was hooked. The company culture, the product, the passion and the opportunity for growth all seemed too good to be true.
Hence you could understand how ecstatic I was 6-months later when I was offered the job as the Brewery Tour Manager. As I was responsible for designing a BrewDog tour I immediately began doing heavy research into the company, the history, the ethics; and worked to a create a tour that was about so much more than just how to brew beer. A tour where everyone left understanding the inner workings of BrewDog and what has shaped it into the ground-breaking, epic company it is today. My job is to literally know the in’s and out’s of all aspects of the company and to share them on a daily, evolving basis on our tours.
Here’s what I have learned to expect for working for a company like BrewDog.
1. Constant Growth, Constant Movement
BrewDog is a company that was founded 10 years ago. Within those 10 years BrewDog has grown from a garage with some brewing equipment to a company that is valued over £300 million, Punk IPA rising to the number one selling craft beer in the UK, 51 BrewDog bars worldwide and has more than 56,000 Equity Punks (shareholders). Not bad for 10 years.
But with that growth comes a work ethic like no other. People who work for BrewDog work hard. They are extremely passionate about what they do and want things to be the best they possibly can be. However it’s not because your boss is breathing down your neck – but, because you want it to be excellent.
2. The People
The hiring process at BrewDog is intensive. Our BrewDog charter, made by employees, lays out the BrewDog commandments – We are Uncompromising, We Blow Shit Up, We are Geeks, We Bleed Craft Beer, Without Us We are Nothing.
The interview process is less about your buffed up resume and more about you. Do you fit the BrewDog mantra? Our values aren’t a facade – it something that is lived and loved from the inside out. Making sure we hire the right people is the cornerstone to that foundation.
Because of this, the people who work for BrewDog are awesome. Interesting, passionate, intelligent people who are work-smart (and hard) and truly believe in what they do.
3. Quality is the Most Important
BrewDog’s backbone is quality. For our beer we use top-shelf ingredients and do rigorous testing by people and instruments to ensure that we are never selling a product that isn’t 100% up to standards. Come on my brewery tour and this will blow your mind. When you see the quantities of beer now being produced in our new 300hL BrewHouse it’s fascinating to remember that all of that beer is evaluated daily by groups of highly trained humans and that if it’s not up to par we will (quite literally) dump it down the drain. Painful, yet amazing.
This mantra of quality extends throughout the rest of the business. People do things right and all the way. Whether it’s financial reports, pouring a beer, making a graphic, building a website – everything that is done is viewed with importance.
4. The Perks
Okay what we’ve all been waiting for.. Puppy Leave! BrewDog has two pillars, beer and people. Without one, we don’t have the other. So making serious investments into our people as well as the beer has always been a huge part of the business.
In 2014 BrewDog was the first Food and Drink Company in the UK with national footprint to become a living wage employer… And this was huge. For those unaware, a living wage is an amount that it is actually calculated based on the cost of living, tending to be slightly higher than a minimum wage.
Enhanced pension, private healthcare, and annual leave have always been part of the package. But with our major beer investments (expansion into the new 300hL brewhouse in Ellon, plans laid out for a sour brewery and breaking ground in Columbus) BrewDog felt it was time to re-invest in the people.
Hence came along our Unicorn Fund – the introduction of a profit-share program, an increase in all of the typical employee benefits and Puppy Leave!
I get quite a few old-thinkers on my tours who shake their head in disgust when they hear about these benefits, about our on-site gym and see our state of the art cafe in HQ (complete with a full-sized shuffle board and massive bean bag pillows).
“I would never allow this to happen,” they grumble, “how do you think anyone would get any work done?”
I just smile and think – yes, this is why you do not work for BrewDog.
Because the roots of BrewDog are investing in people, quality and growth – the belief that making people as happy as they possible can be to come to work everyday only increases the productivity and success of the company.
BrewDog treats people well and in turn people go above and beyond for BrewDog.
So there you have it – my take on what it’s like working for BrewDog. A company that is moving a million miles an hour, has sky-high expectations and will throw money down the drain for the sake of quality. However also a company with an unlimited potential for growth, where people are proud of what they do and you trust that only our best quality work will every be shared.
Have any questions about BrewDog? Leave a comment below or shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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