|Courtesy of NOMOS|
Business is a funny thing. And the watch business can be downright hilarious. And part of the current comedy (in my eyes) is a stance taken by NOMOS of Glashütte to try and bring some calm, logical discussion to a very tense, very confrontational, and a downright illogical situation.
NOMOS has taken the rather serious step of actually COMMUNICATING with their employees about the current political climate in East Germany, particularly Saxony. Curious to relate, in reading and hearing about it thousands of miles away, it is a situation that could just as easily be taking place here in the US. And in some places it is.
Let's start off with some of the basics:
1. In recent times, the AfD (Alternative for Germany) has grown in popularity in the former East Germany, particularly in Glashütte, where Britain's Independent noted in a related article that upwards of 1/3 of the local residents voted for the AfD. (https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/indyventure/east-german-nomos-glashuette-racism-far-right-afd-a8621611.html)
2. NOMOS felt compelled to take action to clearly identify where they, as a company, stood. In one instance putting up a banner outside their headquarters stating:
“We are ticking internationally”
3. But then NOMOS took things a step further, and began offering workshops designed to raise awareness as to the potential pitfalls of blindly following a particular ideology. And they are to be commended for actually seeking out experts in the area and bringing in Courage, an organization based in Dresden, to offer these sessions.
SHUT UP AND DRIBBLE
(or shut up and make watches, but the meaning is much the same).
So that's the background. But now let's get back to the comedy portion of our program. And that is the coverage of my colleagues who write about watches in both the fourth and fifth estate, or more specifically the lack thereof. Let's just say with a few exceptions, it's been crickets. And that is really a shame. You do not have to agree with the stand that NOMOS has taken, but it is news. And it is infinitely more worthy of your attention and coverage than covering a horse race in Kentucky, the launch of a new SWATCH in Shanghai, or who wore what on the red carpet. Really? Who gives a shit?!? Oh, that's right! The person writing the check in the PR office of brand X!
I would like to share a video put out by Caseback Watches on YouTube, as this was one of the few people apparently willing to weigh in -
The beauty of being independent, is that you can act independently. And I will throw my lot in with NOMOS on this one. NOMOS is to be commended not just for making a statement of principles. That would be easy enough. But with these in house sessions facilitated by Courage, they are working to create an environment where their employees will feel safe, valued, and appreciated, regardless of where they come from. This is more than just creating a mission statement, I mean let's be honest, just about every organization has one. But with their commitment, NOMOS is living their values. And while it is easy to say "big deal, it's just one company!", well, that's how every great movement starts, one person, one group at a time.
I have reached out to the folks at NOMOS for further comment and for more background, and promise to report it all without fear or favor.
As I've said in the past, a brand is not just a name, a history, a latest model, a paid celebrity ambassador. A brand is, most of all, the people who work there. And I suppose that I am idealistically naive, but I tend to spend my money (particularly money on the things that I don't necessarily need) on things made by people that stand for something beyond just a quick profit.
And owing to their living values, NOMOS will be my next watch purchase, as these are values I champion myself. And no, I won't shut up and write about watches.