Everything we do at Watson is rooted in soulful design. Design that is guided first by the functional needs of our clients. Design that is refined to achieve a timeless and understated beauty that doesn't scream “look at me.” Design that is executed respectfully, uses honest materials, and delivers deeply satisfying quality.
Built from scratch.
Our origin story dates back to the early 1960s, when a South African-born cabinetmaker and metalworker named Grahame Watson set up shop on Bainbridge Island near our present-day Poulsbo, Washington home. Twenty-ﬁve years later, Grahame handed the keys to a partnership led by Bill Haggerty, Daniel Warn, and Clif McKenzie, whose leadership stemmed more from custodianship than ownership. These days, we continue to honor Grahame's vertical integration model but have developed a continuation strategy to ensure long-term stability for the hardworking men and women who form the backbone of Watson.
We love this place.
The Orchard is more than merely our Paciﬁc Northwest headquarters and the land that surrounds it. The Orchard deﬁnes us, feeds us, ﬁlls us. With a perimeter of towering Douglas ﬁrs and vistas of the Olympic Mountains, it’s quite the inspirational workplace. The Orchard is more expansive than its literal acreage; it's an oxygen-rich metaphor of what we're here to do and, more importantly, what we’re here to take care of.
Have you met Clif?
If so, then you get it. And you get us. If you haven't had the pleasure, we'd like to introduce you to the who behind our why. CEO Clif McKenzie leans into just about everything we do. He's been at the helm here since 1991 and he has no plans—or desires—to be anywhere else. It's not that this company is all about Clif; it's that Clif is all about this company.
There’s dignity in working with your hands.
Making beautiful things is immensely satisfying. We all feel it here, whether we’re designing, building, marketing, or shipping Watson furniture. There’s something very special about contributing to a process that results in tangible products made with care and respect. Equally true for those of us in innovation, sales, and support roles as it is for those of us on the factory floor. In addition to creating goods, Watson is creating jobs for people who want what a lot of workers don’t have: the pride that comes with craftsmanship. That’s what building and manufacturing can do.
We expect certain things of ourselves and of one another. It helps us do our jobs better, both as builders and as citizens of the world.
We operate with a high degree of kindness, humility, and respect. Our character is revealed in our words, choices, and actions.
We are responsible for asking questions and taking action. We don’t blame others. We don’t make excuses. We seek solutions and we finish what we start.
Play to Win
We embrace individual challenges and strive to get better every day. We work together to create competitive advantages and we play by the rules. We understand our future depends upon our ability to hustle, compete, and win.
“Embody Character” is my mother.
When she passed, my eldest was on deployment and unable to attend the services. He wrote, “Grammy, just like Pa, will continue to live on through the actions we take every day, the choices that we make, and the thoughts in our hearts.” His words could not describe the way this company preserves her character any better.
“Take Responsibility” is my father, who was always the adult in the room.
He never asked others to do what he could do himself and I’m not sure I ever heard him make an excuse. If there were only one piece of advice on how to ensure one person can have an impact on an organization, it would be to take responsibility. No victim stuff; just go get the answer. And in doing so, you’ll be the one person everyone looks to for the answer.
“Play to Win” is us.
"Watson has yet to receive a purchase order for coming in second." -- Clif McKenzie, Watson CEO