And we’re back today with more California fun! Before we dive into more of my adventures with Clif Bar & Company, be sure to check out Part 1 of the trip here.
For Day 2, we headed to Clif HQ for a tour and introduction to the company as a whole. Years ago, long before receiving the invitation to this trip, I had heard about Clif being an awesome company to work for. Some family member of a friend of a friend worked for Clif and talked about how progressive the company was in creating a healthy and sustainable work environment and that has always stuck in my mind. We visited HQ on a Thursday, which is was perfect for getting a feel for company culture, as Thursdays are when they host a weekly company-wide meeting and provide free breakfast for everyone. The meeting always starts with a letter or “good news” praise for the company as a whole, a department, or even a specific employee. Nothing like starting the day off on a positive note! I love it!
The best place to start in explaining Clif company culture is with the five aspirations that serve as their guide for doing business. The 5 aspirations focus on sustaining Clif’s Business, Brands, People, Community and the Planet. Their commitment to these aspirations were apparent during our tour of HQ and the farms, as well as in our interactions with employees.
The HQ building itself is LEED Certified, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. This means there is a focus on conserving water and energy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The interior, including furniture, artwork and sound panels are all from recycled sources. Large windows and garden areas allow for natural sunlight and solar panels on the roof create the heat for hot water. The work area is open, with half walls separating cubicles, some of which house standing desks (which I’m a big fan of). To create some division and privacy, plants are used as natural dividers and to add a little greenery.
As far as sustaining their people, Clif totally rocks. For starters, everyday is bring your dog to work day. What could be better than a workplace where there are always pups hanging around?! I’m not sure Rocky would go for it, but my friend Gus here sure seemed to like going to work for Clif!
If the dogs aren’t enough to convince you how great Clif is to their people, there are just a few more perks. There is a subsidized daycare (called Base Camp–so cute!) right next door to HQ, so parents can check in with their kids during the workday. There are dedicated mommy rooms for breastfeeding, with pumps and all supplies provided, so nursing moms don’t have to lug everything to work each day. Employees are also incentivized to leave their cars at home and bike to work, or switch to a fuel-efficient, low-emission vehicle.
Clif HQ also has an on-site fitness center, with classes and a rock-climbing wall. Oh, and employees get a 30-minute paid break each day to utilize the fitness center. That’s right–THEY GET PAID TO WORK OUT DURING THE DAY.
Massage therapists, chiropractors, acupuncturists and health coaches are also available on site. Clif offers telecommuting and flexible work weeks, with an option to work 80 hours in 9 days and get every other Friday off. After seven years with the company, employees are rewarded with an opportunity to take sabbatical for personal development and growth. I mean, seriously?!
Clif is also committed to the community, allowing employees to volunteer (on company time) to serve any non-profit organization of their choice. This year the goal is 11,440 hours of service, which they track on this awesome board in the office.
HQ also has a cafe, which is employee run and focuses on local, sustainable food. Breakfast is served for free daily and lunch is subsidized. They have soups, salads, sandwiches and more, plus they receive some produce from the Clif Family Farm too!
Last, but not least, there is an entire wall at the office which is stocked daily with all Clif products, which employees can grab and snack on during the day. We were allowed to snag some goodies on our tour, so you know I grabbed some of those Kit’s Organic Fruit & Nut bars! The Dark Chocolate Chili Almond is my jam!
After our tour, we broke into groups to build our own Clif bars. Erica, Toby and I created a Matcha Machine bar with almonds, matcha, blueberries and mulberries. We ran out of time to bake and taste-test, but I’m pretty sure we had a winner!
During lunch, we sat in on a panel discussion with Clif athletes Maghalie Rochette, Lakey Peterson and Kimmy Fasani. It was awesome to see what these badass women are doing in their respective sports and hear how they like to fuel their workouts.
After spending the day learning about the Clif company, we were treated to an energizing yoga class to end the retreat. It was the perfect mix of heart-pumping movement and calming breathing techniques that I love in yoga.
As you can probably tell, I had a great time experiencing the Clif company culture with incredible colleagues. I was beyond impressed by the transparency of the brand and their willingness and interest in creating open dialogue with us nutrition professionals. Big thanks again to the Clif team! Here’s hoping they keep making waves and inspire other companies to follow suit with their dedication to health, wellness and sustainability.
What are some of your company perks? Have you ever had a bring-your-dog-to-work day? What’s your favorite Clif bar product or flavor? Tell me about it in the comments below!
Disclosure: All of my travel and accommodations for this trip were covered by ClifBar. I was not compensated for writing this post or asked to share any of my experience. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.