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Thursday Insight: This Restaurant Likes to Tattoo its Employees!

Thursday Insight: This Restaurant Likes to Tattoo its Employees!

The above newspaper headline was too much too resist. The moment I saw it, I clicked to find out more.

The article is such an uplifting read that I’m really glad I did. It tells the story of Nova Café, located in the delightfully named American town of Bozeman, whose curious accolade is that over 30 of its employees (past and present) have, voluntarily, had tattoos celebrating the café.

The 30+ tattoos aren’t identical; they are designed specifically for the individual. But all involve some form of the café’s logo, which was inspired by a breakfast order. According to the owner, Serena Rundberg, “Two eggs and two pieces of bacon landed on a plate in the exact shape of a skull and crossbones.” This led to the creation of the tagline, “Killer Breakfast”.

It’s worth re-iterating that these tattoos are entirely voluntary, though Serena does pay for them all. What shines through in the article, and Nova Café’s Instagram page, is the sense of fun, joy and togetherness that the employees feel. This is a place where individuality is embraced, and work anniversaries are something to be celebrated.

It is clear that pride in being part of Nova Café has transcended normal boundaries. They are more than a team; they are a community. Employees feel like they belong. 

Serena seems to be a manager who knows that employees who genuinely enjoy their job and the working environment will outperform those who don’t.

Thinking about Nova Café and my own workplace, Glasstap, I was reminded of the power of laughter and kindness to nurture genuine friendship amongst team members. Most of us work remotely and we're scattered from Cumbria to Cornwall, but we have at least two team days a year that bring the whole team together. We also have fun initiatives such as our Question du Semaine (this week's question was, “Which cartoon character do you most look like?”).

What could you do to enhance your team's sense of community?

You might enjoy the following activities and they're not a bad place to start:

All the best,


August 8 2019 Frances Ferguson
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Frances Ferguson

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