WOODCHUCK Getting Personal

Our First Two years: An inside look from the CEO of WOODCHUCK

 

 

 

Hey Everybody,

With the two year anniversary of WOODCHUCK rapidly approaching, I figured it was about time to step away from the craziness of phone calls, laser cutting, toilet cleaning, and bullet dodging to update you on the status of the company.  I’d like to give you a personal look into our culture, the future growth of the brand, and in true WOODCHUCK style, some authentic American feedback.

Entrepreneurship can be a rocky road, but damn the view is beautiful.  As CEO, I have experienced, first hand, the ebb and flow of the company.  An idea that was sparked while drinking a beer at the University of Minnesota has since evolved into a worldwide brand.  What I anticipated to be a fun side project turned into a crash course in business management, team building, and international brand management.  I knew I needed a strong team to inspire the potential I envisioned for WOODCHUCK. The building began.

At the establishment of the company, the team spent countless hours studying business, designing innovative products, and creating invaluable connections with some of the most brilliant minds in business.  Naturally, we need a mission, a vision for where we wanted to go and what we wanted our company to do.  That mission was change.  Change through nature by bringing people back to Mother Earth.  Change in manufacturing by creating more jobs in America.  And lastly, Change in consumerism by creating quality products for our supporters.  We went from working in my bedroom, to a small attic in a shop, to a massive warehouse, back to a small office, and finally where we are today… our own beautiful manufacturing studio in Northeast Minneapolis.

 

FIrst WOODCHUCK photoshoot: Throwback 2012

 

Over the last two years, WOODCHUCK has pushed the limits of life and life has pushed back.  We have had success and opportunities for change.  Through that time, we’ve gone through: hiring’s, firings, machines starting on fire, people starting on fire, legal battles, fun times, bad times, crushed expectations, amazing unexpected results, struggles,  landing product nationwide, more struggles, landing international deals, screwing up, screwing up more, learning branding, learning how not to brand, asking questions, meeting amazing people, meeting jerks, meeting amazing mentors, traveling the world, broken down cars, broken bones, and of course…. we chucked a lot of wood….

The one thing that we didn’t “go through” however, was our mission.It’s still here, authentically American, radically simple, tried and true.
Bring nature back to people
Bring Jobs back to America
Bring quality back to products.

 

 

Leading this company and striving for this vision has been the most humbling, engaging, and promising experience of my life.  I have the opportunity each day to lead a team of dedicated, brilliant individuals on a mission for change.  For that, I am eternally grateful. 

I would like to take one last second to thank you (yes you the person reading this), my team, our friends, our family, supporters, fans, pets, neighbors, and partners. You make our mission a reality everyday and we cannot wait to see what is to come. 

 

P.S. If you ever want to talk about WOODCHUCK, life experiences, or anything at all, shoot me a call at 920-412-6846.  Better yet, stop in anytime for a tour of our manufacturing studio to meet our incredible team, experience our fun and supportive team culture, and watch our products come to life before your eyes.

 

Benjamin Jo VandenWymelenberg 

Founder/ CEO

 



June 06, 2014 by Ben VandenWymelenberg
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Comments

Joshua Brown

Joshua Brown said:

Awesome post. Super refreshing to see a CEO talk openly about the struggle it takes to be successful.

John Stavig

John Stavig said:

Congrats on 2 years of progress, perseverance and learning!

Keep building great products and a fun, innovative company.

Paula Boylan

Paula Boylan said:

Ben

Do you have covers for the iPhone 5c or is it the same as 5s?

THX
Paula

Mary Jo Vanden Wymelenberg (Mom)

Mary Jo Vanden Wymelenberg (Mom) said:

Nice post, Ben! What a great life experience and opportunity to help return the “business plan” back to American family ideals.

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