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Insider secrets to building a better business

Sometimes, to build a successful business, all anyone needs is an idea and an unwavering passion for the things one loves. Who knew a simple meetup between two car enthusiasts almost five decades ago would grow into one of the biggest and prestigious auto auctions in the world?

Today, Barrett-Jackson holds highly anticipated multi-million dollar car collector extravaganzas in Scottsdale, AZ; Las Vegas, NV; Palm Beach, FL; and Uncasville, CT, enjoyed not only by rich car enthusiasts but by families and average automobile aficionados as well.

Small beginnings

Way back in the mid-1960s in Scottsdale, Russ Jackson responded to Tom Barrett's car ad about a 1933 Cadillac V16 Town Car. Barrett was selling this classic Cadillac and Russ was one of the prospective buyers. Although the pair's Cadillac deal fell through, this fateful meeting began their lifelong friendship and planted the seeds of what would become the Barrett-Jackson auto auctions.

In 1967, Tom Barrett and Russ Jackson hosted their very first car show/auction, the "Fiesta del Auto Elegance," which also doubled as a fundraiser for local charities including donations for the Scottsdale Public Libraries.

The pair teamed up again in 1971 to present their first car collector auction, showcasing rare vehicles from their private collections, including an armored Mercedes-Benz 770K that Adolf Hitler owned. The hoopla around this car's record-breaking auction got the attention of car enthusiasts around the world and put the Barrett-Jackson auctions on the map, so to speak.

Setting the bar: Innovation amidst adversity

Barrett-Jackson's secret for its continued growth in the succeeding decades is that one thing that every small business owner should keep in mind - taking risks.

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