JuiceLand’s Matt Shook on music fest recruiting, and pandemic recovery

There’s a method to Matt Shook’s madness. Many thousands of Austinites and visitors have seen the JuiceLand “originator” (owner is too pedestrian a term) making his way around the grounds at local music festivals on a trademark bicycle, spreading the gospel and brand of one of the city’s most beloved juice bars.

It’s an effective marketing tactic, but it’s also a move that has helped Shook find just the right potential employees who have helped JuiceLand grow to 35 stories and more than 500 employees around Texas. Shook tells One Man Brand host Ray Seggern that his interactions with music fans helps him with recruiting.

“The festival business is a great way to find employees,” he said. “Culture is creating an environment where people want to work together. We love to find people who are into health and nutrition and want to have a good time.”

Shook also talks about how he and the JuiceLand team initially responded to the spread of the Covid-19 virus, how the pandemic has put a hold on plans for more stores’ opening around the state, and how his early days as a DJ have played into the decision to build vinyl record shops into some of the JuiceLand locations.

While he’s optimistic about Austin’s ability to rebound from the pandemic over the long haul, he said right now operating as a small business owner is a day-by-day proposition.

“Over the past few years we’ve had to put some markers on the roadmap, and this is like the engine just dropped out of the truck while you’re driving. It’s day to day at this point, trying to get shops reopened.”