Archive for November, 2011

Who has watched the movie (or will at least admit to watching it) Megamind? You know that part where the bad guy asks Megamind what the difference is between a villain and a super villain? His response is my favorite part of that movie, and probably among my top 5 parts of any movie watched ever – PRESENTATION!

So I went to Subway today at the local gas station on the corner by our offices. This gas station was packed, subway was packed, the convenience store was packed. By all accounts, I would have to say it was among the busiest gas stations I have been at for a while. I noticed as I was ordering my lunch that the store manager, and what looked like another manager, were carefully washing the windows with a squeegee. They painstakingly removed every dust particle or stain from both sides. The job was done immaculately and as Megamind would say, their presentation made this gas station a super station.

This exact same gas station, just a few months ago was dead. Nobody. Crickets. That’s right, this station had the exact same location, but under different management had an arby’s, as well as convenience store, and gas pumps. Everything was always filthy, the outside, the inside, the shelves were not stocked properly, the restaurant was a mess, and the gas pumps rarely had fuel in them. Yes, the gas pumps at the gas station didn’t work because there was rarely gas. Now, this process took a few years to deteriorate to the point that new management bought the station from old management and turned it around in a matter of weeks.

They say in Real estate that location, location, location is what matters, and is the most important decision you can make. I say, ya, pretty important, but that doesn’t mean you can forget the lesson Megamind teaches us. You need PRESENTATION!

I have five kids. That should say it all for this blog post shouldn’t it. Every single one of my kids went through a phase of asking me why to just about everything in life. Some people may find that annoying, but I always enjoyed giving as intelligent a response as possible, only to hear why? again. Eventually I would give in and simply respond with – why not?

Its the cop out answer isn’t it, but one thing I have learned is that people can get stuck in asking the why questions for so long that there is no decisive action, and they are left in inaction, forever analyzing but never progressing. I was never too fond of those philosophical course I had to take at college, I have always been interested in action.

A number of years ago we had a board meeting to discuss methods of expanding our franchise concept, and we discussed many of the traditional as well as nontraditional channels we could use to get in front of the kinds of candidates we seek to award franchises to. We had the good fortune of a board that was stacked with intelligent and very experienced and successful entrepreneurs. During this discussion one of these respected board members, in response to asking if we should risk a lot of money on a unproven advertising channel, asked – Why Not? – we are all a bunch of entrepreneurs, what are we afraid of? I loved that response, and as well as the challenge that it presented.

Sometimes you have to do things you don’t know will work, you have to venture out into the unknown because if you don’t then you will never know what you could have had if you hadn’t simply asked the question -Why not? that’s what entrepreneurs do.

Just do it!

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