We had the good fortune of connecting with Tyrone Hazen and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Tyrone, can you talk to us a bit about the social impact of your business?
At Puffin Coolers, we started our company with the intent of benefiting more than simply our owners, employees and customers. We want to have true impact external to ourselves, and this philosophy is integrated into our DNA. As a start-up, it’s a great challenge to simply make ends meet, let alone contribute to something that doesn’t directly and positively impact the bottom line. But, we committed to the goal and continue to improve our ability to affect change.
This year we are partnered with an organization called Big City Mountaineers. Our work with them is around gaining more exposure for the incredible projects they support (helping under-resourced youth experience nature through facilitated overnight camping trips). We have added them to our product packaging and will be creating a documentary film on their behalf highlighting the work that they do.
Just today we hired a full time Impact Manager to ensure this project goes smoothly and to start creating next year’s project. As a company whose core mission is to bring fun to social gatherings, our future social projects will include community events throughout the country that will highlight local organizations to better expose the good work that they do.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Our business is still young, but we have seen incredible growth (even among the many challenges of the last two years) due to our team culture. Just last week I stepped into our new warehouse where we had just received multiple containers full of product, and was amazed at how far we had come so fast. Without an inspired team that rallies together to support the achievement of our company goals we’d have collapsed under the pressure of the Covid-19 pandemic. My team members know their value, and they know that we are more than the sum of our parts. Egos get checked at the door and everyone is willing to role up their sleeves and do whatever it takes to get the job done. And we have a lot of fun doing it!
As for me personally, I think I’ve developed a good system for decision making. This stems first from understanding and framing the problem at hand. Then my team and I determine what information is needed to make a decision, and where we can get the best information. Once you have this info in hand, determining how to move forward is fairly easily, as long as you are clear on where you want to go.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
In my little town of Bend? We’d go outside! Most of us are here for the lifestyle Bend provides. There are outdoor activities year-round and no shortage of new areas to explore. I LOVE Clear Lake for paddle boarding, but even a quick trip down the street will net you a smooth paddle with beautiful views of our city, some great parks and views of the cascades.
And we are a beer town through and through. Last I checked I think we had 27 breweries. Hard to pick a favorite, but Crux is great for the views and outdoor setting.
We have lava tubes and lava flows, waterfalls, amazing lakes way up in the mountains… it’s a long list!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Oh man, I’ve had so much support and wouldn’t be here without the help of so many people. My mom, Kathy has always been my biggest champion. Whenever I have a new idea she is the first to offer any support she can. She actually sewed up the initial prototype for Puffin.