So ask anyone at Tadaweb and they will tell you one reason they love Monday (or Tuesday, or Wednesday or Thursday or even Friday) mornings is because when they get through the door they will be greeted by fresh baking, waiting for them on the communal table. That baking comes from my oven. Yes, since the beginning of the Tadaweb journey I have made it my mission to bake every week for my team (including the week my son was born). It’s safe to say I know each member of my team’s favourite recipes.
“You bake a cake, the guys eat it.” Simple situation right? Well. The one thing that I have actually learnt the most after years of baking for an awesome, growing team is that the situation is actually a little more deep. Baking, particularly as the company Founder represents a number of implicit values. Let me explain…
Number 1. Giving Thanks
For me personally, from as young as I can remember, baking has always been a way to thank people, particularly growing up in New Zealand. If the neighbours helped out, a teacher was kind or someone needed a “thanks,” mum baked for them. Baking for Tadaweb has always been a way for me as a Founder to say “thanks” to my team for all the hard work they do.
Number 2. Investment of Time
Baking is quite a large investment of time. In fact, I generally spend a good three hours or so baking on Sundays, plus a few more hours during the week if they team are really hungry. By being able to show your team that you are willing to sacrifice a few hours every week, particularly on the weekend, in order to make their day a little happier definitely brings a level of empathy to the office.
Number 3. Sharing of Food
Baking is definitely a two way street: I love baking equally as much as they love eating. Because I am a foodie, I have grown to appreciate how special and “bonding” the experience of eating together is. Let’s face it, some of the earliest human social interactions were based around sharing food. This is why one of the first purchases for the new Tada office was a communal dining table and there is nothing more great than seeing a table full of guys who like sharing each others’ company, reflecting on what they are eating, telling jokes and enjoying the moment. Baking unites the team in one more way.
Number 4. No Need to Wander
It was never the intention, but a nice bi-product of having food “constantly available” in the office let’s the team keep focused on what they are trying to achieve. There is nothing worse than working on an empty stomach and having to leave the office to find a snack can cut concentration. A big jar full of cookies, a box of fruit or a healthy loaf at their disposal is a great way to get projects done and dusted.
So all in all, our unique baking offering at Tadaweb is filled with benefits, from showing my gratitude as a founder, to keeping away the hunger pains, baking has been a key part of the Tadaweb company culture. Just wish me luck when we hit the 100 employee mark… I might need to hire an CBO (Chief Baking Officer).