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How can I navigate a boozy work culture?

By Posted in Podcast

If you’ve ever worked in a boozy workplace, you know how difficult it can be if you’re cutting down or giving up. Outside of standing around the water cooler, post-work drinks are a typical way of getting to know your colleagues. Business lunches often involve lunchtime drinks. If, like Laura, you’re in a career that sees you at public events, drinking can even start in the morning! Boozy work culture can be really tricky to navigate if you’re changing your drinking. But, as our podcast guests discuss, it’s not impossible.

This week’s podcast is a throwback to our Global Mindful Drinking Festival in October. Alex Walker from Bee Sober hosts a panel of experts to discuss boozy work culture and how to navigate it with your goals and intentions intact. 

Who are our guest panelists?

Helping us to navigate boozy work culture this week is Alex Walker, co-founder of the sober community Bee Sober. If you’re UK-based, you’ve probably heard of Bee Sober before. You may even have already attended one of the fantastic brunches that they have set up in various places across Britain. Alex is based in Manchester with their best friend and co-founder Lisa. Bee Sober help people who are changing their drinking to connect over coffee, food, and activities. They pride themselves on the safe space that they provide their members so that nobody has to go it sober alone.

Alex’s guest panelists are:

Ellie Webb, the founder, and chief joy-maker at Caleno drinks.

Bad things happen when you drink too much at work events….I’d heard stories about Christmas parties, people get fired because they turn up and they drink too much. They overdo it because there was just so much (alcohol) available there. And it ends really badly. So I’ve seen kind of both sides of it now. And it was an interesting four or five years but I decided that I wanted to get get out of that world – still stay in drinks, but actually make the non-alcoholic side a little bit more exciting than it currently was.

Ellie Webb

Eric Knight, founder & master distiller at SPIRITY cocktails, a pre-made cocktail that’s made from tea.

I was the boozy boss I was the one that was organizing events with people, you know, once a month with my team, being together with other teams working together on wine tastings, spirits tasting, and competitor tasting. Social events included alcohol and alcohol was always the center place of those. I looked at it as my role to show everybody a good time, get them all drunk, you know. And I never really put a lot of thought into folks who weren’t drinking, and how they would feel about it.

Eric Knight

Terri Wood from @not_soboring who is bridging the gap between drinkers and non-drinkers in the creative industries.

I think having become sober, you kind of you tackle that hurdle of giving up. And then you keep going to work. And you’re like, Oh, God. Now I’ve got to deal with all of this boozy work culture as well. All these situations that I just accepted as being normal, and never considered having to do as someone that didn’t want to drink.

Terri Wood

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