Friday, September 28, 2007

Dueling Entrepreneurs - Backcountry.com CEO and Black Diamond DOS

Black Diamond - makers of big kid mountain toolsTwo of the larger players in the Outdoor Industry who have grown and matured in Utah are Backcountry.com and Black Diamond. Although the two companies do vary in focus and the type of businesses they each run, there has been a lot of connectivity between the two of them. Most recently, the relationship has flourished as Backcountry.com has emerged as one of the top if not the top retailer of Black Diamond gear.

Launch magazine, a Utah based publication for entrepreneurs, somehow lassoed two very busy individuals in Backcountry.com CEO Jim Holland and Black Diamond Director of Sales and Marketing Chris Grover to have them chat about each others business. It's a unique format, one Launch calls e2e (entrepreneur to entrepreneur), and after reading some brief pieces of text from the discussion I spent the time to listen to the podcast. I have to say, I found it insightful and quite interesting.

Here's a sample of the interaction through conversation that emerged - the aged old question in the Outdoor Industry. And a fine answer by Chris Grover!
Jim Holland: Chris, how do you guys incentivize people? Sometimes that gets a little tricky. Is there an incentive for people just being in this industry?

Chris Grover: Yes, but that is not enough. You get to be in the industry. You get to be in a good environment if it is the right environment for you. You get to be part of something you are passionate about. There is a lot that comes with working at companies like ours but you are absolutely right, at some point the answer to, "Where is the rest of my paycheck?" can't be, "Look at the view out the window."
So grab a cup of joe, a fresh bagel and either download the podcast from Launch Magazine or listen to it from their website.

After you listen to it, comment below with your feedback on what you thought or perhaps things that struck a cord with you or even things that cut you to the core. You've got carte blanche.

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