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Drinking On The Job? Please Do, Say These Employers

on 17/04/12 at 1:27 pm

Booze News

Drinking on the job? Some employers say they’re fine with that. In fact, some will even buy the booze, on the theory that a little tippling makes for a happier employee—and maybe, too, as a new study suggests, a more creative one. Those “Mad Men” of the ’60s may not have been so mad after all.

For anyone unfamiliar with the hit TV series, “Mad Men” depicts the goings-on in a Madison Avenue advertising agency of the 1960s, including the manners and mores of boozing at that time. We see office workers having an in-office pop before heading out to a multiple-martini lunch, then returning for an afternoon aperitif. This isn’t furtive drinking. It’s proud, assertive drinking, with liquor bottles and decanters in plain sight.

Though a variety of companies today serve alcohol to employees, it’s still ad agencies who hold highest the gin-soaked torch. The ranks of liquor-serving firms have recently included J. Walter Thompson, BBDO, TBWA/Chiat/Day, Grey, and Mindshare.

In New York, J. Walter Thompson has in its offices a 50-foot-long bar with pedestal stools that would put many a commercial bar to shame. “Yes, we have a bar,” says a spokesperson, “and it is frequently accessed. We think it incentivizes and enthuses employees. It’s generally used for off-hours consumption, but that’s not to say there isn’t on-hours consumption as well.”

Ad agency Kirshenbaum, Bond, Senecal + Partners hosts internal, open-bar events called Trolleys. The name comes from a drink cart, known affectionately as the trolley, that 20 years ago rolled around the agency dispensing cocktails. It since has been retired, but the liquor still flows, including brands belonging to agency clients. These currently include Svedka vodka, Glenfiddich whiskey, Milagro Tequila, Sailor Jerry rum and Hendricks gin. Non-alcoholic drinks are also are provided.


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