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Henry Wu                                                                                                       

3/6/2004

Prof. Blake

The Drama and Challenge of Business

            The challenges and struggles of managing a business are met only by a select few who are able to understand the intricacies of running a business.  One such person is Mr. David Wang, the Director of Operations for American Racing.  He has held this position for over five years.  He not only manages the company here in the States, but also a factory in China.  Because of the factory in China, David frequently travels to China for extended periods of time.  He manages around one hundred workers here in the States as well as in China, with employees ranging from factory workers to salesmen to marketing.  With a workforce that large it takes an incredible amount of time and energy to ensure that everyone is working with motivation.  The company itself has over 1700 employees around the world.  In addition to American Racing, the company also owns smaller ion to American Racing, the company also owns divisions called them succeed in this harsh world.ures of working for a dedivisions called Motegi Racing and RoJa Wheels.  David tries to keep in touch with every single one of his employees by getting to know them and making sure that each employee has the motivation to work towards a goal that correlates with the company.

            American Racing is currently owned by a Canadian-based company which gives shares of ownership to stock holders.  There is no actual owner, so the company works toward pleasing its stock holders.  American Racing focuses on designing racing wheels which targets the car import scene.  There is heavy competition in this market, so the company must continually strive to develop new products that appeal to the mass market.  To get their name out into the public, American Racing wheels have been featured in the highly successful movie The Fast and the Furious.  Their wheels have also been displayed in numerous auto shows around the country.  The company also appears at NASCAR events to get their name out in hopes of appealing to an even larger spectrum of customers. 

            The job that David holds offers many excitements that keep him motivated after all these years.  He enjoys seeing the new products that roll out every few months and the ability to test them out.  The company continues to be pioneers in this industry just like they were over forty years ago when the company was created, and this allows David to become excited and have a passion for what he does.  He is entrusted with making sure that their new products live up to the legacy and the heritage that was started over forty years ago.  Aside from the business aspects of directing a company, David realizes that managing a successful company is about more than work, work, and even more work.  To re-energize his employees, David often takes them out to barbeques, sports events, and even gives them the chance to race custom cars around a track.  This provides a relaxing atmosphere that allows his employees to get away from the stress and high pressures of working for a demanding company.  Seeing his employees function together as a team and seeing them succeed when faced with difficult challenges provide David with the most joy.  He feels almost like a parent who watches his children grow up and sees them succeed in this harsh world.

David dislikes having to travel to China every month to check on the factory there.  He knows it’s just a part of business that everyone has to deal with, but it’s hard on him and his family because when he leaves it is often for two or three weeks.  He faces the challenges of juggling a full workload with difficult responsibilities and the even harder task of raising two children and keeping his family intact.  He may not be able to always be there for his children, but he always finds time to at least give them a call whenever he’s gone to check up on them.  This takes up an incredible amount of time, but David knows that he must always make time for his family and put them before work.  Because he is away on business trips most of the time, David really cherishes the time that he is able to spend with his family, and even though he may not be with them all the time, he realizes that it is all just a part of his responsibilities as a Director.

            Some of the most difficult challenges that David and his company faces is that of competition and the need to constantly develop new ideas to fight the competition.  In a monopolistically competitive environment, it is difficult to stay on top of a market that offers so many products for consumers to pick and choose from.  Because of such competition, David must make sure that his company can compete based on product quality, price, and marketing.  He also tries to differentiate the company’s products so that the consumer has a variety of choices to choose from.  To ensure that his company knows what the consumer wants, David constantly attends auto shows and talks with the consumers and basically tries to get out into the public to become more aware of what he needs to do to succeed.  Another important part of succeeding in a competitive market is getting the company’s name out to the public and developing sound marketing strategies.  It helps that the company has had its products featured in movies such as The Fast and the Furious and 2 Fast 2 Furious.  By displaying their products on such a wide scale level brings attention to the company as well as opportunities to sell their products

            David faces the challenges of ensuring that his employees are working towards a goal similar to that of the company’s goal.  He also understands that he is there to guide his employees in the right direction and to provide his expertise to the younger employees.  He also faces the intellectual challenge of realizing that he doesn’t always have the answers to everything.  He realizes that it is okay for him to ask others for advice when making important decisions because others can offer insight and provide a different perspective.  David also knows that each and every decision he and his peers makes can alter the company in a big way.  It is impossible to know how certain decisions will affect the way the consumer market will react, and thus these challenges provide for a sporadic experience.  The only way to face these challenges is to be informed as much as possible and be aware of the constantly changing market.

            David feels that the most rewarding aspect of his job is when he sees his employees develop new products that are highly successful in the open market.  He gets a thrill out of being the first company to design a particular product, or being the first to do something that other companies can only copy.  He shared his excitement with me when he revealed the company’s plan for a thirty-inch wheel- something that no other company has achieved yet and where the largest current wheel is only twenty-six inches.  It’s this kind of thing that provides David with the motivation to push himself and the company beyond the normal limits.  The monetary aspect of his job isn’t as important to him as just seeing his company succeed.  It motivates him somewhat because he has to work to provide for his family, but money is not very high up on the list of what motivates David to succeed.

            You would think that after working for the same company after so many years would tire out someone out, but David manages to keep on top of his responsibilities.  Sometimes his work schedule is so hectic that there is never a dull moment.  Whether he has to help evaluate a new product, or fly across the continent for a meeting, or travel to a show he always has something to do.  He is always open to new suggestions on how he can make the work place a better environment where everyone can succeed.  No matter what he is doing or how well the company is doing he feels that there can always be room for improvement.  It is this kind of thinking that has allowed David to manage a successful company throughout these past few years.

            Through this interview I have personally gained insight on how a successful company is run.  There are many different approaches on how to run a company and Mr. David Wang has provided me with an understanding of his particular company.  I’ve learned about the complex intricacies of managing a large corporation which in turn will help in the future with whichever career I hope to attain. 

e comion to work towards a goal that correlates with the company. by getting to know them and making sure that each employee h