Meet Our Makers Series: Emily

Photo by Brad Black
On November 10, 2016 by Brad Black in WE THE PEOPLE

Meet Our Makers Series: Emily, Poet & Senior Copywriter

 

Part of what makes our products unique are the stories behind them. These stories couldn’t be told without Emily, our Senior Copywriter. I sat down with her to talk about inspiration, collaboration, and what evolution means to her. This is our chat.

Brad: We’re so excited to talk to you.

Emily: Why wouldn’t you be?

Brad: You’re gonna be the hardest one.

Emily: I can’t believe you got me in here, honestly. But, I’m excited to be here.

Brad: I guess part of what I try to do with these interviews is to say it’s really nice to work with you, to collaborate. We’ve done a lot of good stuff together and we’ve lived a good chunk of our lives together as well.

I think of how you got here. You’re pretty fiercely independent and yet you found something that opened the opportunity for us to work together. How did this happen for you?

Emily: I am pretty independent by nature, there’s not a lot of companies I’d want to work for. But, also, I think collaboration has been a pretty big theme in my life and that was a huge attraction for me at EO – the chance to work with such an incredible team. What’s really different about this company is that it’s large. This is a big company for me. There’s a whole bunch of people working together and big decisions being made. Bigger audiences, bigger everything. That was a little hard for me to come on board with. But it was worth it. You guys aren’t jerks. I see that in a lot of big corporations. I see the humanity get sucked out of the day-to-day interaction for the employees and that’s not happening here.

Brad: Can you touch on how it does happen?

Emily: That’s irritatingly hard to nail down because it’s just here, it’s a part of the culture. There’s just a humanity here. I never get the sense that I’m a number or something that someone has to put up with. I’m a human being when I walk through the door and everybody’s excited to talk to me and interact with me.

Brad: We are!

Emily: Yeah, that’s a big deal. I don’t normally see that in companies that are bigger than 10 or 20 employees. That’s why I’ve traditionally gone in the direction of smaller companies where I directly knew every person involved, for that humanity. When I found it here, I was surprised.

Brad: We talk about this a lot, sure we’re a company, but what we are really is a group of people who aspire to step up in a similar way. To show up and to be met.

Emily: That works. It’s working. I feel like I have actual relationships here, friendships. That’s good.

Brad: We’ve been working hard to evolve the EO brand. How’s that going for you?

Emily: It’s good. It’s overwhelming. It’s a lot of shared responsibility but I’m feeling the weight of being a part of redefining a brand that has really defined everything that happens here. You know, it’s the real DNA of this company, it’s part of the Everyone brand, it’s part of corporate—it’s all grown together into one big beautiful organic thing.

Now the exercise is to extricate this one piece, the EO brand, and to really honor it and give it what it deserves as a brand, especially one that has supported so many people for so long. So, it’s really exciting. It’s a little scary, which I think it should be, and it’s really educational. I’m learning a lot. How is it for you?

Brad: That’s very well put, it’s similar for me. EO has grown up. It’s a young adult at 21 years old, really like my kids. As with you, it’s very touching and meaningful and personal for me. It matters. I guess that’s how we step up in our own ways. It should be personal. Everything should be personal. Wouldn’t we live in a wonderful world where everybody took their actions personally? For that to happen, you need a community of like-mindedness. Where you work, and who you work with matters – are you aligned?

Emily: I was gonna say, I think we do kind of live in that here.

Brad: I wonder if other companies and corporations truly reflect what’s meaningful for their people.

Emily: I’m sure there are a few. But, for the most part, no, I don’t believe that.

Brad: People are people.

Emily: I think people are people, yes, and they’re really motivated by very basic needs—primarily the need to feed and clothe and house themselves and their families. I think a lot of corporations are just focused on profit, that’s it.

Brad: So that their employees can go home and feed and clothe their families.

Emily: Yeah, sometimes, partially. I don’t have a very good view on corporate America, in case that wasn’t clear yet. I think that transactional experience is what’s highlighted in most companies and that people have been told that what they need is to ensure that themselves and their families are safe and fed.

So, these corporations exist mainly to put money into the pockets of a very small percentage of their employees. But the trickle down effect of that focus is ‘we’re only doing good if we’re making more profit.’ It’s different here, it just is. I wish that more places were like that.

Brad: Groovy. I think we got the exact interview we wanted. These are so fun. Are we cool?

Emily: Great, thank you for having me.

 

Canned Questions

First job: I was an art assistant at 13. I got paid to be my mom’s friend’s assistant in an art class she was teaching. I made $150, that was a big deal. I got to buy my own clothes that summer.

Favorite beverage: Water

Music: Yes to music. Leonard Cohen and there are other musics too.

Childhood: Kauai, Hawaii

Days off: Walking the dog, playing guitar, singing, and napping.