Rusty Quill is, by far, the most welcoming, most understanding and caring group of people I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with.
As an American, the work culture of Rusty Quill is mind-blowing, because no one works quite like they do. In the U.S. we are so used to being taken advantage of, of giving our life to the company, of expecting people to work “for exposure”. RQ doesn’t want any part of that. This company sees you as a person, as an individual, as a g-d damn human being with thoughts and concerns and needs and feelings and worthy of respect and understanding.
Yes, there are times where we’ve worked above and beyond to make a production happen. But it is a personal, conscious choice – an effort driven by love of the medium, love of the show and love for both fans AND coworkers. It is important to note that when RQ employees do that, it’s because we’re passionate about what we do on a personal level – it’s never required of us and is in fact discouraged by management because they want to make sure we’re taking care of ourselves. RQ always tries to give us as much time as we need to complete a task, and if we start to work a lot of long hours it raises a bunch of flags that has coworkers checking in on us to make sure we’re okay. It’s a concern that we’re not given enough support, or something has happened in the production process that workloads have become unbalanced.
It’s important to realize that Rusty Quill is hella neurodiverse. (Honestly, I don’t think anyone at RQ would classify themselves as neurotypical.) This does present its own challenges in communicating efficiently with each other, because each of us has their own style or preferred way of processing information. I have never seen an organization so committed to making sure everyone’s work preferences are met – Rusty Quill is the only group I’ve met that takes the time out to make sure everyone is heard and leave avenues of communication open without judgement or reproach 24/7.
Does that communication break down sometimes? Sure – but every job does. People get tired, or sick, or they miss an email. That happens in everyday life. RQ has employees across multiple time zones, living their own schedules and experiences. Just by the nature of having so much long-distance work happening, there’s bound to be communication delays. But no one judges anyone for it, we let people catch up when they can or send a reminder and it’s fixed.
And because we are so neurodiverse, RQ keeps mental and emotional health in the foreground as a high priority. You need time off? Take it. Having a bad day? Skip the meeting – go do something that makes you happy. Gotten sick and you need to stop working for several weeks? DO IT – we want you to be healthy, we will tackle any deadlines or workloads while you’re out because we care about YOU first.
I’ve gotten to know a lot of audio drama companies while reviewing AD shows for radio broadcast over the last decade, and I have worked for various theatres and national corporate events over the last 12 years. Believe me when I say that Rusty Quill has an incredible (and special) company culture with people who care about each other, look after each other, and are passionate about telling and sharing stories.