It's not everyday you get to chat with the CEO of one of the country's biggest banks.
But Tom Croft and Dan Emery from The Welder's Dog chatted online with ANZ Bank CEO Shayne Elliot recently, and the interview posted on Mr Elliott's LinkedIn page has been viewed almost 20,000 times.
"It was very cool to speak to one of the big 4 CEO's," Tom said.
Tom and Dan were asked about their business and the CEO was especially keen to find out where the name of the bar came from.
But predominantly the conversation focussed on how the business was dealing with the COVID-19 crisis.
"I think he's been doing his LinkedIn talks for a while, and thought he would tailor it a bit more to the covid stuff," Tom said.
One of the topics the CEO chatted with Tom and Dan about was how the business had launched their Bunker Boxes to keep staff employed after the bar had to close due to COVID-19 restrictions.
While sales have eased off as restrictions have lifted, Tom said they were still going strong.
"There's still a lot of people who are buying them, so it's still viable and we've still got our staff out there delivering and putting them all together.
"Hopefully we can keep it going."
Tom said the interview was organised after local ANZ Business Banking Manager Steve Goodare put their name forward.
Prior to the online interview, which was conducted via Zoom from The Welder's Dog Armidale bar, they sent through information on the business to the bank, along with photos, videos and links to their social media accounts.
"We've already got a fair bit of feedback from people who have watched it, and some other high profile people we know have seen it, so it's been great exposure for us, and really good of him to take interest."
He said they were hoping it might also get them a little exposure in the city market.
"A lot of big business might have been following him on his LinkedIn, so that's probably very beneficial, hopefully."
In the meantime, the focus is on keeping the business going until the restrictions ease, and Tom said they were grateful to the support shown to not just them, but all local producers through the shutdown period.
"The support everyone has shown for small business has been really good, and talking to other businesses they all feel the same," he said.
"We think it's been a good realisation for everyone that it's a really good community and we're pretty blessed."
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