At Tallgrass, we’ve created a culture rooted in inclusivity and entrepreneurialism, because our mission is to help our agents thrive. “My favorite part about this company — beyond the numbers, beyond the growth — is our quality people and the quality stories that make up their lives,” says Founder and CEO, Damon Anderson.
And at the core of this belief is our corporate culture. Our work hard, play hard mentality comes to life through our events, from our family Bounce House Bash to our epic Christmas Party each December.
Connecting freight agents through fun events has its roots in Damon’s own childhood. “I grew up in a fairly big family, and my grandpa was a sheet metal worker in Kansas City,” Damon recalls. “During those times, we always had family get-togethers. On top of that, that family included my grandpa’s sheet metal workers. The shop was, in effect, an extended part of the family.”
“Money only goes so far in making you feel content and happy,” Damon continues. “If I could give a life lesson to the Damon Anderson of 20 years ago, I’d remind him money isn’t everything. Life is just too short. So you better put an emphasis on those connections and on the people in your life.”
That perspective has a ripple effect throughout everything we do at Tallgrass, especially our events. It’s all about bringing our people together and having fun!
The annual summer Bounce House Bash is a family-friendly gathering held at Wyandotte County Park, north of our flagship freight agent office in the suburbs of Kansas City, the same park that holds great memories from Damon’s childhood.
“Every summer, my grandpa would have a family picnic, and it was a blast,” Damon remembers. And the Tallgrass Freight Bounce House Bash brings together our agents and their families for a Saturday afternoon of catered burgers and hot dogs, games, conversation and — you guessed it — bounce houses!
And there’s good reason our team starts talking about the annual Christmas party 11 months in advance. Forget what you thought you knew about company Christmas parties. This is more than an office Secret Santa and cookies in the break room.
The epic Christmas bash we throw each year, like the Bounce House Bash, echoes the fun holiday gatherings Damon remembers as a kid. The food, the fun, the games, the music, the infectious laughter: it all added up to irreplaceable memories that would have a lasting impact on Damon’s life.
The company’s inaugural Christmas party started small — with Damon, Mike, the first few agents and their significant others making up the entire guest list. Delicious food, goofy prizes and flowing drinks made for one unforgettable night, one that became a yearly Tallgrass tradition.
Living by the motto, “next year will be better than the last,” TGF’s Christmas extravaganza has grown a little bigger and a little fancier with each passing year. Parties expanded to a restaurant on Kansas City’s iconic Country Club Plaza, to a smaller hotel ballroom and to the biggest one yet in 2019, at the downtown Marriott.
Agents and their plus-one fly in from across the country and spend the weekend in style in Kansas City. And while each year is bigger than the last, there’s always space for agents to come as they are, and jeans and bow ties are equally welcome. From disco dancing to magic shows, decadent dinners and cocktails, the yearly celebration is a true testament to our belief in the power of bringing people together.
“Ever since I was a kid, I dreamed of owning a business,” Damon says. “As a kid, you think you’re going to be the best business owner because we’re always going to have fun . . . and as I’ve gotten older, that continues to ring true. That’s the ultimate Christmas present for me.”
Do you share the work hard play hard spirit? Want to be your own boss and contribute to something bigger than yourself, being part of a community that loves to have fun? You won’t find this anywhere else. Become part of our independent agent network today.