April 30, 2012

In celebration of our 10 year anniversary Lucy sat down with The Honest Kitchen’s original employee, Laurette.

You are our original employee – can you share a little bit about your original role with The Honest Kitchen, when we were based in the beach cottage?

Ah… I can picture the room, ‘where it all started’. I can’t recall having a job description, but some of the day to day processes of those initial days, as well as some fun facts. In the early days, we worked out of the extra bedroom of Lucy and Charlie’s home (there were no cubicles then, and still no cubicles today…yeah!). The room was a little bit of a squeeze at times with 2 dogs, (young dogs to boot), and a sleeping baby… well, sometimes sleeping baby. I believe we had a phone with call waiting, before upgrading to two lines…. Our store list was on a single sheet of paper above the fax machine. We had 2 diets, Verve and Force, and Embark was nearing its launch.

So, there was order processing, which at the time entailed, manually entering the same order into 3 different systems. Toward the early afternoon, we’d head out to the garage to pack the boxes, match up orders with packing slips and labels, and the trick was to have the boxes ready before the Fed Ex man arrived. Luckily he was a dog person, so the dogs could entertain him – or distract him as we rushed to get the last couple packages out the door. Fun Fact: the then ‘shipping table’ from the Garage is now our board room table… way to reduce- and- reuse!

Lucy had envisioned an E-Newsletter that would help to educate people on holistic approach to pet health care, and the THK E- newsletter was launched. I wonder if there are any of those old newsletters around. The newsletter would be sent from our Outlook, and we would inadvertently jam up the system while trying to send the newsletter to too many contacts at one time. There were several occasions, where we sent the newsletter multiple times to the same people due to crashing our system and not knowing who had actually received it… oops! I can still picture some of the images we used in those original newsletters, our marketing team would really cringe!

Charlie the Dalmatian has been coming to work with you since day one. What do you think is his favorite part about the job?

Charlie boy is one happy pup for sure! I would guess he’d be a bit torn as to his favorite part of his job, is it food or love?? Though he can be a bit crazed by food, I do think love would win if he could answer for himself. Charlie loves- loves- loves food of all sorts, and is very thorough in his tasks of tasting a sample as part of our R & D, helping himself to an unattended lunch he’s sniffed out, and multiple times a day he has to check to see that the kitchen trash is locked- another possible source of free food. For the ‘love’ side of his job: Charlie met his truly best’est’ buddies ever at THK, Mosi and Debeau. They have since passed on, and now on any given day Charlie has about 9 other pals at the office that he can check in with to see how their day is going. Charlie can melt near any person with his loving look, but for the newbies, he can really give a sting with his ‘stink eye’ until he okays them as a team member. All his jobs are taken seriously, and he is very skilled at all of them.

What’s the strangest thing you’ve ever had to do while working here?

Humm… I can think of several, and with dogs around, there are always strange things that need to get done, but I’ll skip those. This is more of a funny than strange, but during the R & D phase of our newest diet Love, I was on the floor of our production plant, discussing with our team the how to – when to – what’s needed to ‘make Love’. In my head I was talking about our newest diet, Love, and it did not dawn on me until the plane ride back that I had spent 2 days discussing ‘Making Love’ with our production team.

How would you describe being a THK Team member, to someone who’s never been to our office?

Being a THK team member is being part of a family of passionate dog and cat lovers, who aren’t afraid to talk poop! There is definitely a bit of English humor in the office, so sarcasm flies well, but is nicely mixed with compassion for all animals’ highest well-being.

Is it true you once allowed some party guests to eat Verve as a dip?

Yes…. But I’m not certain they all know about it. We were having an after softball gathering, I was preparing food for the dogs in attendance (typically we have a dog crew at any outdoor festivity we do) and a friend thought it’d be fun to put Verve on the menu. We mixed up some Verve, added a little salt to taste, since we do not add salt or sugars to our any of our products, topped with some sliced avocado and served. I think some people even had seconds….yum.