Weldwerks Reflects on Lessons Learned in 5 Years

Five years ago, a handshake deal at a homebrew competition in Breckenridge, Colorado marked the beginning of a business plan for a brewery.

The handshake agreement between Neil Fisher and Colin Jones was that if Fisher brought home a medal from the competition, he would open a brewery. But Fisher didn’t just win one medal — he won two.

Back in early 2015, before the opening of Weldwerks Brewing Company in Greeley, Colorado, as a co-owner, Fisher was just hoping that the brewery would still be open in five years.

In 2020, Weldwerks certainly isn’t just scraping by, but growing, thriving, and evolving.

“We have amassed a team of some of the most talented folks in the industry, with whom we have received more accolades and awards in five years than many businesses accomplish over their entire tenure,” Fisher said, who is also the head brewer. “We are making a lasting difference in our community, actively working to help change and redeem the story of Greeley.”

However, with all Weldwerks’ success, the journey hasn’t been without its challenges. 

Jones — the company’s CEO — reflected on his tenure at Weldwerks, mentioning that sometimes, he has to remember to get out of his own way.

“I believe there is a tendency as a founder to perhaps hold on to control for too long, not spend the cash in the early years to build staff and teams, not delegate, not trust,” Jones said. “And, if you’ve been fortunate enough to enjoy early success, to buy into your own ego a little too much. Bringing in different personalities and opinions forces you to grow and adapt and, at least in our experience, led to a better all around product and experience as well as increased success.”

Weldwerks released an average of 120 fully branded and packaged beers in 2018 and 2019. Now the Weldwerks team is planning on opening a second location in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Another learning experience was the importance of building careers, Jones said. 

“As a small brewery, this is a challenge but one we take on happily, with full hearts and with a ton of energy,” he said. “It leads to longevity, battles complacency, and in general adds strength to the family culture we work so hard to build every day. For us, putting our people first is incredibly easy and we will always sacrifice at the leadership level to ensure everyone in the brewery has the best opportunity to succeed and earn more than a living wage.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *