The phrase: “for all shapes, sizes” is not a simple expression at the Qingdao Durex factory, it’s the jaw dropping reality. Never had I seen, and never again will I likely see so many different kinds of condoms in my life.
The Qingdao Durex Condom Factory is the equivalent of the ‘Willy Wonka Chocolate Factory’ for condom and supply lovers.
Precision, efficiency, and rigorous safety standards really do turn a device as intimate as a condom, into a modern marvel. For this reason, I can safely say that after the brief afternoon I and the Beijing Durex Team spent in Qingdao, none of us will ever look at a condom the same way as we did before.
Being a marketing intern, it can be easy to forgo and overlook practicality when brainstorming new creative and original products. The trip to Qingdao however showed me that in business creativity must be matched by practicality because at the end of the day a creative idea must have practical value. It has to be produced with high quality, not leaving the costs of production out of focus.
The Durex factory in Qingdao does exactly that as it allows for new creative solutions to condoms to be explored while ensuring that each condom made carries the Durex Quality Emblem.
Out of all the processing stations at the factory, my favourite one was by far the electronic testing station. Here, before being packaged, each condom was unrolled onto metal tubes where an electric current was then passed through the tube to detect if the condom had any malformation. Female workers manned these stations, and the speed at which they unrolled these condoms onto these metals tubes (sometimes two at a time) was mind-blowing. ‘Easy On’ condoms or not, those ladies made it look easy every time.
Never having been to a factory before, personally seeing the systematic order by which goods like condoms are made was a truly insightful experience that RB was able to offer me. It reminded me that in a FMCG industry like the one RB competes in, strong relationships must be forged between functions and departments (such as marketing and supply) to assure the timely, effective and efficient production of innovative, and creative products. I can gladly say that I found RB does exactly so, as the Durex Marketing Team’s trip to Qingdao clearly testifies.
But like I said, after this brief factory tour, I now see condoms with a lot more respect and admiration as I didn’t do before.