Stone: Oklahoma 'A-OK' with taking jobs from CaliforniaPublished: Tuesday, July 30, 2013 By: Renzi Stone Source: CNBC
Oklahoma is big enough to matter, but small enough to get things done. A decade ago, as a twentysomething looking to start my own public relations/marketing agency, I felt like I could live anywhere in the United States. I had worked for a Washington D.C., public affairs shop, but I saw what the rat race and the long slog to the top looked like. I wanted the proverbial blue ocean, where I could differentiate myself, and where I could make a difference now.
Growing up in Oklahoma afforded me familiarity with the state, but it was opportunity that committed me. I saw something unique happening, and I wanted a piece of it. Ten years later, my upstart firm is one of the fastest-growing independent agencies in the nation. Our team likes to say "Oklahoma by Choice" when pitching business to out-of-state clients.
We love doing business in Oklahoma, and the choice part repeats itself often as we recruit others to join us. Talent continues to pour into the state, and government regulations are business-friendly and predictable. Oklahoma City, where we are headquartered, was ranked 12th in population growth in a recent study, with a growth rate 60 percent above the national average. Oklahoma's unemployment rate of 5 percent is more than three points better than California (8.6) and a point better than much ballyhooed Texas (6.5 percent). Oklahoma City has the nation's lowest unemployment rate at 4.6 percent and Tulsa at 5.5 percent.