Have you had your dopamine fix today?

Gordon Lo – Senior Marketing Manager, Jebsen Beverage

A study in 2017 revealed that drinking beer makes us happy – it stimulates the release of feel-good hormone dopamine in our brains. I don’t think this would surprise anyone. This merely confirms that the warm and relaxed feeling we get from enjoying a pint does, indeed, have scientific roots.

I value happiness a lot; I see it as the impetus to life. As the Senior Marketing Manager for Jebsen Beer, I appreciate the happiness-inducing power of good beer. At home with my daughters, I am also filling my happiness tank all the same. My family recharges me and gives me my dopamine fix every day.

It is not as simple as that though.

The truth is, my family life helps me grow as a professional. And vice versa – working at Jebsen has made me a more insightful father too. I have learned many parallel lessons from home and work, especially this one: happiness promotes success.

I joined Jebsen Beverage in 2015 as Marketing Manager, looking after trade marketing for AB Inbev beer brands like Stella Artois, Hoegaarden, Corona, Budweiser and more. From building partnerships with trade customers to managing promoters for various brands, my job required me to skillfully navigate many interpersonal relationships. And interpersonal relationships are sacred at Jebsen. This is apparent in the way managers lead. My trusting relationship with my supervisor, for example, is one of the reasons I find joy in my work: she gives me the autonomy and flexibility to try, while guiding me to understand my strengths and challenges. When I do the same with my daughters at home, I see them blossom into confident risk-takers. When executed company-wide, this management approach builds a culture underpinned by trust, making Jebsen a happy, high-motivation workplace.

The focus on relationships extends to our customers too. In my case this often means working on some very fun projects. As marketers, our job is to understand the consumer and our trade customers and create experiences that they will love. When Budweiser secured a partnership with Premier League, my team became responsible for launching watch parties and lucky draws at bars and restaurants, even planned to sponsor clients to participate in live shows in England! It is easy to stay happy when your work is closely tied to thrilling events like these.

After my promotion to Senior Manager, I sought out ways to strengthen relationships among my growing team. Again I found that injecting happiness into our daily interactions was key, and once again I drew inspiration from my daughters. Parenting is all about milestones – the first smile, the first words, the first attempt at walking. I celebrated all these moments with my girls, sharing in their happiness and pride. It turns out these gestures also work wonders for morale at work. When I help my team members break down their development plans into small, achievable tasks, and celebrate their successes with them, they feel happy and motivated. This translates into greater focus and productivity, not to mention extraordinary achievements.

Just two days ahead of the Rugby Sevens in 2016, our Brand principal made a last-minute decision to do a sampling promotion during the games. Within one day, we had to book coolers, line up promoters and manpower, produce promotional materials and make arrangements for all the event logistics. Impossible as the task had seemed at the time, we made it happen. Our recipe? A sharp focus on the task at hand and good team dynamics, backed by a shared happiness about working together – something that we built up bit by bit, by keeping our everyday interactions positive.

When we are happy, we are ready for anything. The future holds many challenges for us: rapid changes in the beer market, more aggressive competitors, and intensifying workloads within our team. But I’m confident. Our spirit of celebrating successes and looking out for one another will fill up our happiness tank, and carry us through good times or bad.