The Kru: An Origin Story

October 23, 2017

If you’ve ever been walking down the 1200 block of Broad Street and run across a strange conglomeration of old tvs and lockers in the front windows and thought to yourself, WHAT THE ACTUAL HECK, you my friend, are not alone. We have wanderers into our office almost daily who want to know a little bit more about what lies behind those intriguing red doors and what we have to offer. We’ve been called a bar, a clothing store, a record company, but often times, the magic that does actually happen in this space surprises people. We haven’t always been here, and we haven’t always been this indoctrinated into the Downtown Augusta culture (and the rest of the CSRA for that matter). Every business starts with a dream, and ours was no different.

Bossman Chris started it all in a tiny office with barely a brand or logo, when the vision was still a semi-distant dream. Eight years later, we’re posted up on Broad Street in our dream studio helping brands excel day in and day out.

Everyone here has a different story — how it all started for them and why they chose Kruhu. In their own words, here is some insight on what brought this Kru together:

“After 8 years of being in the ad agency business, I felt like I had a deeper grasp on the way information and communication were being utilized on multiple platforms, and I felt like where I was, we weren’t meeting the needs as we should have been.  In 2009, after being a solo freelancer for two years, I realized that the more you could offer a brand, the better. I felt like I could do a better job at cultivating and reaching the avenues of communication that were changing rapidly.  I was able to offer strategic and visual aspects to a brand, but not able to expound on the ever fast paced growing world of the web and technology advancement in general. The web was already well established by 2009 but was rapidly becoming the norm for those who needed marketing help/online presence beyond the basics. At that point, I felt the need to branch out into the realms of interactive. By partnering up with some guys who knew a lot about that stuff, I was able to round out the services that I felt at the time a brand needed crucially. Being that I serviced quite a few brands at the time, Kruhu was formed and was a way to grow established and new clients in a bunch of different directions. I didn’t set out to be a business owner, but I saw a need, especially in the Augusta market, so I filled it.

Kruhu has since evolved from a solo act into a fully functioning band of team members that bring different wealth to the overall mission. That’s where the whole concept of MindBru came from—it’s not a recipe that comes from just me, it’s a collection of different talents and skill, combined to make magic.  If anything, the dream that was set out at the very beginning has fulfilled itself in the fact that we are able to take brands to the next level using various forms and avenues of communication in a constantly evolving and ever changing landscape. I would love for the Kru to continue growing with the vision of where our skills and talents will take us in the future, and not necessarily where they are at this current point.  If there is any growth to be had, it is in the vein of progression and not just sustainability. That goes not only for our brand but for the brands that we work for every day.”

– CHRIS RUCKER • CHIEF CREATIVE since day one

“Finding Kruhu was like fate…or maybe more like dumb luck! Feeling like I hadn’t entirely found my place in the work world in the Augusta area, back in the fall of 2015 I, by happenstance, stumbled upon a posting on LinkedIn about the Account Exec. position at Kruhu. As a marketing major in college with a desire to settle back in Augusta, I had always had my eye on Kruhu…I just never thought I’d actually get the opportunity! It was always a company that just felt so “big city”. After my first interview, I was so impressed by the caliber of work, work space, and culture, I knew I couldn’t say no if given the chance. I started in October of ’15 and haven’t looked back since.

Kruhu has allowed me to really flex my marketing muscles. When you go to business school with a marketing major, you always dream of ending up somewhere where you get to do all of the things you love, and you don’t have to do the same thing every day. Kruhu gives me not only the opportunity to interact daily with clients and members of this community, but to engage and strategize for our brands.”

– LINDSAY WADDELL • BRAND EXECUTIVE / STRATEGIST since 2015

“I was searching for a studio to spend my internship during my last semester of college. What stood out first to me about Kruhu was their quality of work – it impressed me more than any of the design studios in Augusta. But the atmosphere still seemed relaxed and fun. You could really see how passionate and talented everyone was, like a true team of creatives. I emailed my portfolio (not thinking I’d actually get a response) but Chris called me that same night to set-up an interview.

When I started out, I was mainly responsible for cutting business cards and small print orders. But I slowly began taking on more responsibility and larger-scale projects/clients – then the 6 months flew by. And although I had grown attached to the company, I had already reminded myself that it was just a temporary position. But the day after I graduated Chris offered me a job as a full-time designer.

5 years later, I’ve now transitioned into more of a leadership role with endless opportunity to create. I honestly never expected to be invited here let alone work here – but I’m lucky to do what I love here everyday with such an inspiring group of people.”

– CHRISTY FLAHERTY • INTERACTIVE STUDIO DIRECTOR since 2011

“I was at Augusta Tech and my Academic Advisor asked if it was OK if he recommended me to a local company which was looking for a programmer. ‘I said yes, and it’s been On and Poppin’ since.”

– OZ RICHARDSON • PROGRAMMER since day 2010

“I had to take on an internship in order to graduate and I ended up with a place at Kruhu.

I started in March of 2015 and I was only supposed to be here over the summer but when my official internship was coming to a close, I basically begged Chris not to make me leave. He graciously let me stay and stumble my way through learning the ins-and-outs of studio life and growing as a designer. When I graduated that December, he offered me a full-time position with the Kru and I never looked back.

I really, truly didn’t want to work anywhere else. I never sent my resume or portfolio anywhere leading up to graduation. I’d interacted a little with other studios in the area and had seen their work but none of them could offer a workplace environment that fosters creativity and camaraderie like Kruhu. During my internship, I’d gotten a firsthand experience of working with a team that truly cared for each other and the product we presented to our clients and I knew another studio like Kruhu would be hard (impossible) to come by.”

– LAUREN RAINWATER • CREATIVE since 2015

“I think I chose Kruhu before Kruhu chose me. Hahaha! Working for and with a local business is my passion. When you can find a business whose beliefs and values align with your own, it is both an honor and a privilege to work there. I have been amazed not only by the talent of Kruhu, but also the quality it has produced for years.”

– NATALIE SCOGGINS • BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT since 2017

“Upon graduation I was determined to find the perfect job I had worked so hard for. As a designer, it was important for me to seek a group of people who, not only shared my passion, but who I could also call my friends. Living in Charlotte at the time, I was willing to chase that vision no matter where it took me and Kruhu took me to Augusta. I chose Kruhu because it was everything I hoped for when I first decided I wanted to be a Graphic Designer and above all else, I get to spend everyday at a place that feels the farthest from “work”.”

– BAY ROUTH • CREATIVE since 2017