Why Ecliptic’s Sales Manager Looks at Growth Differently Now

This is a part of a continuing series of Q&As with members of the brewing community from across the U.S.Brewer Magazine will share business and personal insights from Brewmasters, Head Brewers, Brewing Managers, Sales Directors, QCQA Managers and others each weekend to help you get to know each other better in the industry and learn more to better develop your own brand.

Erin Grey Kemplin, Sales Manager, Ecliptic Brewing — Portland, Oregon

BREWER: Why did you enter the craft beer industry and what makes you love being a part of it and staying in it?
KEMPLIN: I entered the craft beer industry because I just genuinely loved craft beer. I was looking for anywhere that would accept me in the community! I was applying for everything available but sales is what stuck. I love it for the beer. I stay for the people.

BREWER: What do you feel have been new challenges in your position that have helped push you and make you better at your job?
KEMPLIN: COVID. That’s a big one! Quick pivots and the fear of unknown territory. Going from heavily on-premise to off-premise then back to on-premise again. Forecasting sales during unknown times has been near to impossible. Even when I think there is a new normal on the horizon, there never is. This has forced me to look at things in new ways and find solutions to problems I have never encountered before. Overall, I think all new experiences end up making you a more well-rounded manager and therefore, hopefully, better at your job.

READ MORE: Got That Mark? Trademarking Your Brewery & Your Brands

BREWER: How has the definition of growth for your company evolved and how have you adjusted to be successful in that new definition?
KEMPLIN: I think in the past, success was just straight year-over-year growth. Straight CEs over CEs. Now in Year 8, I have begun to look at growth in different ways. Increased PODs, of course, but also especially in our on-premise business … and even more specifically new on-premise IPA business. I think in the beginning we were so new; we were just throwing everything at the wall and seeing what would stick. Now that we have some years on us, we have been able to focus and grow in more defined pockets than before. Another key thing for me is that I used to see success as just numbers. Now I also see success as the strength, growth and unity of my team. Happy coworkers are a huge key to the success of Ecliptic, I think.

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