Media and Agency Execs Weigh In on What Makes Their Companies Special

Shops Reveal Oddest Traditions, Office Decor, Go-To Bars

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The Anomaly family
The Anomaly family

What's the oddest (or quirkiest or most endearing) tradition at your company?

"Our West Coast office developed the Hammer Games (named after Bonnie Hammer, chairman, NBC Universal Cable Entertainment Group). It's essentially an employee Olympics with sporting events, trivia and relay races. On the East Coast we are looking to bring back our Battle of the Bands talent show, where employees... perform with their own bands, sing, do stand-up."
-- Alexa Levitt, head of HR, USA and Syfy

"There's something that started from our New York office -- whenever two people dress alike, we always take a picture of them."
-- Eric Lee, CEO-partner, Anomaly Shanghai

"Jeff Lucas, head of sales for Viacom Music & Entertainment, and the ad sales team do a full
costume parade every Halloween."

-- Carin Stein, senior VP-talent acquisition, Viacom

"The Audi Day Out. In tribute to our founding client -- who joined us 32 years ago -- we close the office for a day every summer and spend time together. We've done all sorts of things, from putting on our own music festival to running a 'school' sports day, or [raising] money for charity.
-- Ben Fennell, U.K. CEO, Bartle Bogle Hegarty

How would you describe your office decor?

"Three big things: cats, snacks and Ryan Gosling."
-- Joel Greengrass, senior VP-super human resources, BuzzFeed

Deustch LA office
Deustch LA office

"Warehouse Kinetic (I just made that up) -- props from shoots, dogs. And one person has a Hello Kitty shrine."
-- Michael Sheldon, CEO, Deutsch LA

"Fancy Viking. It's got the Scandinavian touches being from Minnesota, but it's still a downtown space."
-- John King, CMO, Fallon

"The most surprising thing might be the big mural on the first floor, which says in huge type: People hate advertising. It's a reminder that no one looks forward to advertising, in any form. It reminds us that unless what we're doing is somehow additive to someone's day, they will hate it and the brand that's doing it."
-- Angus Tucker, exec creative director-partner, John St.

What's the go-to office bar or restaurant?

BuzzFeed staff
BuzzFeed staff

"In our New York office, we like Cannibal -- a gastropub on 29th and Park famous for its beef jerky. Beef jerky fuels us. In our Manchester, England, office, everyone likes the The Vale because it serves real beer on the premises. Beer fuels us, too."
-- Ted Kohnen, CMO, Stein IAS

"Kinfolk (in Williamsburg) is our go-to place. It's across the street, does coffee in the morning and drinks at night. What else do you need? Not to mention, we're a joint owner."
-- Nancy Ashbrooke, global human resources director, Vice

"That'd be the BarrelHouse (in San Francisco). We have our own bar. It was an old speakeasy back in the day. It was where we started our office, but we held onto it when we moved to the building on the corner. We [use it] for clients, parties, internal agency meetings -- we're there a lot of the time." -- Andrew O'Dell, CEO and co-founder, Pereira & O'Dell

"Tir Na Nog for a beer. The Skylark for a cocktail and a gorgeous view of the Grey Lady. Wolfgang's for lunch, if you want [your] conversation heard by Times colleagues, and Lambs Club if you work in luxury."
-- Meredith Kopit Levien, executive VP-advertising, The New York Times

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