Industry Profile: YES/Jones/NOW Rep Joe Timlin
05 Jul, 2012
Job Title: Rocky Mountain Sales Manager
Employer: YES., Jones, NOW, Karakoram, Sandbox, Ifound
Years on snow: 16
Days on snow: Still pushin 80!!
Currently Riding: YES. Pick Your Line 159 and Jones Mtn Twin Split 160
Currently I am: Doing the Discount Double Check.
Shay: Tell us a little bit about yourself
Joe: I am a Mid-West guy. Born in Wisconsin, bred to be a Packers fan, but grew up in Minnesota. I played team sports all my life, but hockey was my religion growing up. I moved to Colorado in ’96 and I can still remember my first drive into the mountains. I had never been on a board or skis, but from that moment on I knew was gonna get on a Snowboard.
Shay: How has snowboarding changed your life?
Joe: Snowboarding was not just an activity for weekends, It became my lifestyle and more literally, my Life. From the way I dressed, to the color of my hair, to the friends I made in school. I was hooked, and it all was all influenced by the mid-ninety’s snowboard culture and more importantly, the Mack Dawg Film, “Simple Pleasures.”
Shay: How did you get your start in the industry, who or what opened up more opportunities for you?
Joe: After High School, I bounced around for a few months trying to continue school, but the whole time I knew where I wanted to be. At 19, I finally made the move to Summit County. 2 years later, I landed in Vail and have never left. I have been a Ski and Board tuner for almost 12 years, riding every day and working in the shop every night. What an amazing lifestyle that is. Tough at times, but every turn was the reward to remind me of why I chose that life. Meeting my amazing wife, Krissy is what turned the corner for me. It gave me a new sense of motivation to step up and do something more to secure my future in this industry. When the “soon to be” YES crew was dismissed, I happened to be in the right place at the time hiking with DCP in West Vail for some turns. They were new as business owners and looking not just for guys with sales skills, but people who also shared the snowboard passion.
Shay: How has your previous education or work experience helped you in your current job?
Joe: I honestly think it started with my parents, I got my work motivation from my dad for sure, and my mom really helped to teach me to be patient and let life work itself out. Besides that, 12 years of working in Ma and Pop shops, big boxes and everything in between will give you a good sense of what consumers want and what they really need. I also have a degree in Auto Mechanics, I love off-road trucks. While this may not directly relate to snow sales, I have always been a really huge nerd when it comes down to it. I like to know how things work, why they work and how to make them better. Mix that with tuning and snowboard sales experience, and it really helped me gain an upper edge in rounding out my shred knowledge.
Shay: Tell us about your role at YES and a description of the work you do?
Joe: Sales in the Rocky Mountains are my main focus. I feel like I have the best 4 states anywhere with CO, UT, WY and NM. That being said, the cool thing about YES or any of my brands for that matter, is that we are all very small, but very close. It is a collective on board design, graphics, marketing and so on. I think people would be really surprised at the amount of last minute changes that happen behind the scenes. Alex Warburton and the YES. crew come up with the product and brand direction each year and then it gets put through the ringer with the sales team and the public. We continually analyze and then scrutinize the details and feedback from everyone until we finally pop out the final product each season.
Shay: If you had to make up a job title that most accurately described what you REALLY do, what would it be?
Joe: How about “Purveyor of Awesome.” Actually, I love golf so if I had to pick a descriptive job title, I would be the “utility club.” I can be used anywhere, anytime.
Shay: Describe the craziest day/moment you’ve had at your job?
Joe: Going to El Salvador with the YES. crew for our first official Sales meetings a few years ago. It was the first time that I really felt like I was in. We definitely surfed and boozed at our private locale like it was going out of style, but amazingly we got a lot of work done. That was the meeting that really helped to give YES. it’s identity and a plan for the future. At that time, very few of the original YES crew had ever met face to face. So it was a time for building a brand, but also creating the “family” mentality that YES. still holds today.
Shay: What are some memorable experiences from working in the industry?
Joe: Honestly, I don’t think I could pick one. Meeting Jeremy Jones on a work level for the first time was a really big deal to say the least. In September of 2010 I had to show up at the Deeper premier in SLC, only meeting him once prior, and start promoting his brand right there in front of him with the SLC shred community. What a really cool, down to earth and motivated guy he is in real life though. After all these years in snowboarding, he still shares the love of just being out on his board in any situation, and it shows in his company for sure, he is the hands down harderst worker in Snowboarding. I am so pumped to be able to call him a friend, a boss and have a guy like that to look up to.
Hiking and riding my first 14er, La Plata Peak, in Colorado for my Bachelor Party with DCP and my good buddy Dan P is also another great moment. I have been very fortunate to get to spend some close time with DCP shredding over the years and while we happen to be related to each other by our wives, we have become really good friends as well. Standing on top of the 8th tallest peak in the lower 48 and then shredding it with a legend and a close friend in Dan is something I will never forget.
Shay: What do you think are the biggest challenges that the snowboard industry faces and what changes would you like to see for the future?
Joe: Climate change without a doubt is always looming. What Steinkamp, Jeremy and everyone else in Protect Our Winters are doing to provide public education and worldwide influence is completely amazing. It’s so awesome to see people in the spotlight using the fame they have for something meaningful, and something that not only benefits our industry, but the lives of every one on this planet.
As for the business side, I still have a lot to learn myself, but this is a little observation of mine. Over the past four years I have had a chance to soak this all in for what it is, and see how this all works behind the scenes. I will say this though, I don’t think the industry snowboards enough these days. With exactly 259.5 trade shows per year (give or take a few), there is hardly time to actually ride for a lot of guys and gals in the industry. I think a lot of the focus has shifted from maintaining service within the stores and out on the snow to doing it in mega conventions and so on, kill all of the birds with one stone, right? Sure it is convenient, but working in a shop we always looked forward to reps coming in, shooting the shit for a few and then going out on the hill for some “product testing.” I really feel that shredding and sharing some time outside is one of those things that really creates strong bonds between shops! and brands. You see this mentality a lot in the small brands right now, and not just with Jones and YES, but even the guys we are competing with for wall space. As small brands, we are all here because we truly have the soul and passion, and I think we all want to see the scale tip back a little to the “old-school” days.
Shay: What advice would you give to people wanting to work in the industry?
Joe: Remember why you got into this. It’s for the riding and sharing this life. I could still be grinding away in a shop riding ever single day and be just as happy as I am now standing on my soap box. When you are living the life you want to live, it is pretty amazing how things can fall into place.
Find out more at:
Facebook: Umm, no facespace for me, check out YES. and Jones on Facebook
Twitter: see above
Website: www.yesnowboard.com, www.jonessnowboards.com, www.now-snowboarding.com, www.splitboardbindings.com