Next up in our series of interviews with the Hazlnut team, we sat down with Zachary, an Account Executive for Hazlnut:
Thanks for joining us, Zachary.
Pleasure to be here!
What were you doing before working for Hazlnut?
I was a student at the University of North Florida before being hired at Hazlnut. Nathalie, one of our Account Coordinators, and I actually graduated in the same class. For work history, I come from a food service background. My family owns a local bakery called Amaretti Desserts. They have been in business since June of 2013 and I helped out since day 1. The bakery will always have a special place in my heart, and it taught me so much.
It’s great that you have restaurant experience since you now work directly with restaurant owners. That must make it a lot easier for you to understand what these owners are going through. How did COVID affect things at the bakery?
The food industry as a whole was shaken by COVID and the bakery was lucky enough to be able to ride it out. The customer base there is very loyal and continues to support them through this tough time. I know my family will be eternally grateful for all that the customers do for them. We had a second location in the San Marco Theatre for three years and closed it last December when the owners reclaimed the space we were using. I can’t help but feel like that wouldn’t have lasted if we had stayed there.
How did working in a bakery prepare you for the job at Hazlnut?
I think it gave me a unique insight into the businesses I reach out to. Like you said, I was in the shoes of the clientele we have here at Hazlnut, so I know how restaurants work. I also know how to take a “no”. I got calls from so many people who would ask to speak with the owner, who was my mom and standing next to me 90% of the time. I would look her in the eyes and tell the sales rep that she wasn’t in and hang up. Now I am the guy on the other end of the phone. So, if anyone ever receives a call from me, don’t be afraid to tell me no because I understand and won’t hold any hard feelings.
How did you start working for Hazlnut?
My story is an interesting one, I met Dick and Steven months before I got hired. I was in an entrepreneurship class that had weekly guest speakers. Dick and Steven came in one week to talk about the life of Hazlnut. They had an awesome presentation that showed how much they loved this company and how they pour that love into their product. I briefly spoke with them after class, and apparently my flour and cocoa powder covered hat made an impression. Nathalie and I graduated that semester and started our job hunts, keeping each other updated. She called me one day and told me she had an interview with a company called Hazlnut. I was excited for her and a little jealous she saw the listing before me. She got the job and kept me updated and told me how much she loved it. When a new position that I was qualified for opened she let me know and put in a good word for me. They remembered me from that hat, and I guess they liked me enough to hire me.
That’s awesome! What do you like to do outside of work?
I’m pretty lame outside of work if I’m being honest. I love spending time with my significant other and going record shopping with her. I collect vinyl records, so we go out once a week to try to find new ones. She collects Funko Pops, so we search for those too. I still go help out at the bakery because I do love baking and spending time with my family. If no one is available, then I will relax with some video games. I built a PC a few years back and try to still get use out of it.
Thanks again for your time today, Zachary. One more question before we leave: What’s your favorite thing about working at Hazlnut?
I am a firm believer that people are what make a business, and the people here are genuinely amazing. I am constantly amazed at what the development team accomplishes on a daily basis. I know when I pass someone onto Nathalie for onboarding and support that they are in the best hands they can be in. Jordan provides the friendly competition needed to strive in sales. Dick and Steven are great to work for because they see all of our talents and potential and help us thrive. This team is unbeatable and I am so excited to see and help it grow and flourish.
Good luck to you and everyone on the team!
Click here to schedule a demo and ask for Zachary!