Why William Chris Employees are WSET Certified

Completing Wine & Spirit Education Trust coursework is part of the journey for many people who have their sights set on the coveted Master Sommelier title.

But some winery owners say they believe a WSET background is valuable for all who work for their company — including entry-level, tasting room employees — to have in their proverbial toolboxes. 

Chris Brundrett, co-founder of William Chris Vineyards, said in an interview for an article in the November/December 2021 issue of Vintner Magazine that features tips for businesses ramping up in 2022 that prioritizing staff development has been one key to his company’s success.

This has included and will continue to include having employees pursue WSET certification.

“Thoughtful growth furthers our journey of growing the good life,” Brundrett said. “Specifically, mindfulness training for our leadership training this year has been great. We’re rolling out a company-wide program in 2022. 

“Personal and professional development days have been rolled out in 2021 to build our team strength. Our entire company is WSET certified, which has really helped our team gain confidence and empowered them to be wine education-focused rather than someone who just pours wine.”

The WSET was established in 1969 and is the largest global provider of wine, spirits, and sake qualifications, designed for anyone with an interest in wine, whether personal or professional.

The WSET offers a four-tiered program of educational courses and examinations, starting with the beginner Level 1 and beginner-to-intermediate Level 2 awards in wine, progressing through the Level 3 for advanced wine students, and culminating in the Level 4 Diploma.

Read more expert tips for new business owners in the November/December issue of Vintner Magazine.

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