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Posted March 30, 2009 in Oxx Tales by Jim Markel
Red Oxx CEO Jim Markel has a unique philosophy about business and travel. Here Jim muses on the changes in the business world and how companies are struggling to adapt to a new world where business can be conducted remotely. He reflects on how Red Oxx has grown with the growth of the Internet. All the while sticking to his carry on philosophy of traveling light and fast.
Living the life you love and loving the life you live is getting to be quite a challenge these days. The dawn of the 21st century business model is not going to be an easy transition. Companies are struggling today to realign themselves in the face of this rapidly changing environment.
On the surface the model seems quite simple from a flow perspective. You have a brand or business and you seek to render your goods and services efficiently. Moving to a direct model can be the most confounding challenge for companies steeped in traditional distribution channels.
The transparency of the Internet has lifted the veil on these tried and true methods. No longer can companies hide behind their dealers or distributors. The Internet is changing the customer perspective of goods and services at a breakneck pace. Accountability has found a new medium in the digital world of the web as we the people post content. Brands living and dying in real time make for truly heady days. I liken them to a digital gold rush, as the web seems to be the one true bright spot in the current economy.
Red Oxx has been through many changes as we sought to find our place in the world. Our early roots were a classic model of manufacturer to wholesaler or retailer. Building our production system and solving problems was an all-consuming task. The thought of being able to deal with tens of thousands of customers was really a vague notion in a forgotten business plan. Still the world was changing as Chinese manufacturers were eroding our market share. Something had to be done and soon.
They say as one door closes another opens. That door was the Internet and we made the decision to move on it early. After the tech bubble burst, it distributed some really talented people across the country. Some of them returned home to Montana to set up shop in the rubble of the dot com crash.
The foundation of being tuned into the digital age is having a solid information system connecting you to this new economy. When we went about becoming part of this technical revolution there was no shortage of bright and hard working individuals. Today, we think nothing of coordinating projects from 4 cities and 3 time zones.
This agility and connectivity has been instrumental in our success as a small company in a mega Corp world. Shipping product to over 93 different countries last year alone has proven out the emerging global market. With the website becoming the ultimate brand, vehicle companies are having a hard time comprehending the sheer scope of how malleable they really are.
Life has that same quality, if you’re willing to see it. Finding the path to this can take some trial and error but knowing what you want is the first step. For me, it’s been the blending of my passion for making the best travel bags and then exploring the world with them.
Tune into part 1 of Developing Flexibility in Your Travel Style as Jim takes us to the City of Los Angeles and meets up with some curious and interesting Red Oxx Customers. Find out which luggage combination best suits the leisure traveler.