Yes, Redbox Studio is 13 years old today.
It has been some journey.
I started this business on 10 October 1998, a year after I graduated from USM.
It was also a year where I “fired” my boss and decided I could run a better business. I didn’t have much capital, I did not even bother to lure any clients from my ex-company.
I started Redbox Studio right from my rented room, which at that time I shared with my room-mate (who was then working as an engineer at Bayan Lepas Free Trade Zone).
Starting With Dell and Honda
My most prized possession was my RM7,000 Dell PC which I bought with my savings from that first and only job as an art director (it was a big sum of money then). I believed I could try my luck and see what could happen.
I was trained to be a teacher but I never wanted to be one. Teaching is something I like a lot but not teaching in Government schools. I get annoyed with red tape.
I had my faithful Honda kapchai motorbike too – the one which I had been using since campus days. With these two “tools” I was going to start a business. I even rode the old motorbike to register my business formally.
I started with almost nothing. With no contacts, no Datuk friends, no politician’s help. I do believe in hard work, integrity and principles. I do believe in teaching my team, small as they are, to always do better.
Building Fun Into Business
That is why I was very sad when I heard that Steve Jobs passed away. He is my hero because he never settled for less. He always pushed himself to do better every single day.
I always believed that Malaysian companies and Malaysian businesses can be world-class. We can be world-class if we believe in ourselves, have excellent products and services, treat our teams well, treat our clients well (in fact, treat them like how we want to be treated) and have integrity, openness and optimism in everything that we do and say.
So I understand you if you’re a small business owner, a work-at-home person or a freelancer. I’ve been all these and more. I’ve gone through lean times too. I’ve worried and I’ve made mistakes too.
13 Years And Counting…
But I’ve also had lots of fun because our web design business takes us into interesting industries where we meet interesting people.
We’ve been privileged to work with clients in tourism, manufacturing, hotels, restaurants, consumer goods, wholesale goods, music, healthcare, industrial products, authors and more. And we always make it fun for the team who works with us, even for our interns.
I cannot believe it has been 13 years.
Running a business is like playing a game (well that is my philosophy about it). You are the game-master. You set the rules (ethical rules please) and you play the game. How you want the game to turn out is up to you. Maybe sometimes you win, or sometimes you lose. When you lose, you don’t take it too seriously. You get up and get back into the game. Because you are the game-master. The game outcome is really up to you.
To all of you who have been our clients, our supporters, our friends (from all over the world), thank you for believing in Redbox Studio.
Happy 13th birthday Redbox Studio!
*If you’re a client or a friend or if you’ve attended any of my workshops before, let me know what YOU think of us at Redbox Studio by leaving us some comments below.
P.S. For the first time, we are running a contest to celebrate our 13th years in business. So stay tuned for the details coming up in this blog this week.