Working for a company that values your happiness

September 16, 2019

Stuck in a rut

Surely at some point in your life, you’ve felt stuck—maybe in a relationship or in your job. Perhaps you’ve been stuck in a pair of jeans after a few too many donuts.

We all feel stuck at some point in our lives. However, at what point is it time for a change? For me, feeling stuck is often correlated with not being challenged or not feeling like I have a voice.

I am the opposite of a creature of habit; too much routine quickly becomes “same old, same old,” and I find myself uninspired. Most companies thrive on that routine, so how was I supposed to find something that made me feel valued and energized in a nine-to-five world? Enter Branding Bear.

We are doing things differently

Branding Bear is a unique company for several reasons: it’s woman-owned and run, it’s a full-service marketing firm whose focus is supporting local small to mid-sized businesses and nonprofits, and its employees get to actively participate in the company’s growth while still maintaining a schedule that works for them.

From my very first meeting with Jacque McHugh, Branding Bear’s owner and CEO, I was immediately excited for the opportunity to contribute to the company’s growth. Since starting with Branding Bear, I’ve been given space to develop in my role, trusted to do my job well, and solicited for my input on new ideas and policies.

It’s pretty rare, at least in my experience, for a leader to ask for employee input and opinions regarding the future trajectory of a business. In fact, at Branding Bear, employees also have the freedom to form and shape the various departments and make real decisions about how they will look and run as we continue to grow.

Growing a team committed to service 

Branding Bear started as a small group but now employs 17 people from various states. Our team consists of several local individuals from Washington, Hermann, and St. Louis, but we also have staff in other states, like Colorado and Texas. I enjoy working with a diverse group of people and look forward to seeing how (and where) our team will grow next!

Each person on this team has a unique set of talents they bring to the table to ensure our clients get the best products and services possible. Whether it is crafting social media content, creating and managing websites, or designing a client’s dream logo, our team is dedicated to providing top-notch services.

At Branding Bear, we believe that contributing to the success of local businesses and nonprofits makes our communities stronger, healthier, and more connected. This team invests in making the world a better place, starting with the neighborhoods that hold a special place in our hearts. I feel energized and inspired that the work I do every day directly supports businesses in my community.

Inclusion in company matters and working with service-oriented individuals encourages me to take ownership of Branding Bear and see it as much more than a job. I aspire to contribute to the company’s growth and development because I genuinely care about it and the people that make up this dedicated team.

Work whenever from wherever

Another benefit to the working model that Branding Bear employs is the ability to create a work schedule that fits into my lifestyle. As the mother of a one-year-old and owner of another local small business, working during naps and after bedtime allows me to fit a little extra time with my daughter into days that already seem too short.

Branding Bear’s company format of working together from remote locations also allows me to bring my work with me outside on a beautiful day or to a quiet coffee shop when I need to clear my head of distractions. I can even work while traveling.

Right now, I’m writing from a lawn chair in a campground, periodically looking up to see my husband trying (unsuccessfully) to get a campfire started. One of Branding Bear’s Graphic Designers, Melissa Heitmann agrees, saying, “In addition to getting to work on a wide variety of projects, Branding Bear allows me to work where I want whenever I’m available. I still get to attend my children’s school events, spend time with my family, work on my other career, and even volunteer because my work schedule is flexible.”

This freedom—and the trust that comes with it—is unique and gives me the chance to enjoy my life while still accomplishing my assignments. Branding Bear is deadline-driven, so instead of following an arbitrary set of hours that I need to be seated at a desk “working,” I can dedicate focused time when I’m available to make sure I’m meeting our clients’ needs.

Work you actually like to do

Let’s be honest—working from home or while traveling would still be miserable if I didn’t genuinely like my job. When I first met with Jacque to talk about my responsibilities in Branding Bear, I realized I had the opportunity to turn something that I love to do into an income.

Writing, especially creatively, is challenging, but also fun. I know all the employees across Branding Bear’s different departments also enjoy their assignments: the web designers like developing websites, the graphic designers thrive on creating excellent artwork, and we all love generating content that pleases our clients and boosts their businesses.

Holly Barnes, Branding Bear’s Retail Manager, says about her work with Branding Bear, “I feel like I’m on an actual team…and not just on the team, but a part of the team. I’m excited and driven to make this company grow because I’m actually part of it—not just some disposable nobody. We have a boss who is empathetic and patient, and who pushes us past our comfort zones. I talk about Branding Bear to just about everyone. I’m proud of my job and what I’m doing.”

It’s almost crazy to think that working for a company that cares about you while doing a job that you love is real and achievable. For me, as our company grows, I find my to-do list getting longer and longer, but instead of dreading the work, I’m excited to contribute to Branding Bear’s future and humbled that I’m trusted to do so.

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