BackTalk | Ed Moed ’89

Moed wears many hats, one being Drew trustee.

Moed wears many hats, one being Drew trustee. Photo by Deborah Feingold.

Co-founder of communications firm Peppercomm, “Best Place to Work” 2012, Crain’s New York Business

The woman who runs the award at Crain’s New York Business told us it’s a mixture of ingredients that made this winning recipe. One is that we’ve created a culture that truly is about “work hard, play hard.”

We told every single employee who comes to Peppercomm that at least once you have to try stand-up comedy in a real comedy club, in front of all of us. I’ve gone through it many times now. The first time you pee in your pants.

It’s not about jokes. What’s a comic do? It’s about relating. It’s about storytelling.

In my case, it’s about my crazy Jewish parents—Seinfeld-like parents who live in Florida. And everybody laughed as I imitated them. And when you finally get those laughs, you’re on cloud nine.

We’re the only company in the world with a chief comedy officer. His name is Clayton Fletcher, and he is a professional comic who’s been on Letterman.

Even with a summer beach party, there’s a purpose. We’re trying to be as strategic as we can, to sustain a culture, to build trust. That all leads to a workplace that produces better results for our clients, which leads to a better company.

I was a very average student, unlike most Drew students. I was probably late in maturing to really want to learn. Which actually disappoints me today because I’m a voracious reader.

I knew I needed someplace where there were small classes, professors I could become really friendly with and a place that could nurture me.

I have a group of eight guys from Drew who are still my best friends, who are godparents to my kids. We go on fishing trips. We help each other get jobs.—Christopher Hann

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