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Monthly Archives: October 2009

The Unbearable Lightness of Starting a Small Business

businesslightnessEveryone loves the beginning.

Whether it’s a movie, a romance, a game, a dinner, the beginning is the best part, fraught with anticipation, excitement, hopes and fears.


That scalamander, curmudgeon, defier of dreams and soul-crushing killer of big ideas.

Like starting your own business.

There you are one minute floating on the glorious winds of your master plan to build a niche in the world of cartoon nail painting and the next thing you know FEAR knocks on the door.

“Hey, it’s me.”

“Just wanted to let you know I’m still here.”

“You don’t have to answer back.”

“Just checkin’ in.”

“Have a nice day.”

And you’re off again.

Planning, dreaming, scheming and thinking of the next time that miserable prick will come calling and what you’ll say to him.

Hoping that you’re doing enough, making the RIGHT decisions, not letting him think he can just barge in any old time and knock you out of the sky and back down to earth.

This is where friends and getting off your ass matter the most.

Picking up the phone and conducting a quick therapy session with a fellow crazy person can do wonders.

Doing lots and lots of stuff  THAT MAKES SENSE TO DO also can keep that bastard at bay.

But he’ll never go away.

Cause you need him.

So you don’t get all Balloon Boy wacko on us.

And if you think that may be happening call somebody, heck call me.

I can relate.

By |October 29th, 2009|small business|Comments Off on The Unbearable Lightness of Starting a Small Business

Are You Working with an Ostrich?


We are all delusional to some degree or another.

After all, no one has a perfect view of reality.

Perception IS the reality.

But it is a very dangerous thing in business to work with someone who is so far removed from the truth of a situation that they would rather just ignore it all.

Barbara Ehrenrich has just come out with a new book that addresses the very issue of ignoring reality.

She had the guts to say what most of us don’t want to hear.

That just because you BELIEVE in something or see yourself as TOTALLY AND COMPLETELY AWESOME doesn’t mean we’re going to start minting money together.

I am just as guilty as anyone of ignoring the truth of a situation to protect a fragile ego, but defending bad decisions, doing things out of spite or making excuse after excuse are major red flags.

That’s when it’s intervention time…

when service provider and client need to come together, agree on expected outcomes and drive toward an achievable goal.

But that is straight out of someone’s B-School textbook.

That is not what happens.

Everyone has their own twisted view of things.

You just have to be sure to recognize how many twists there are.

Too many and you gotta cut the cord.

Because success is a million miles away after a hundred heartaches.

Don’t let the Ostrich get you down.

But keep your head out of the clouds too.

Tie One On at Baja Fresh


Soon you’ll be able to order a beer with your Ultimate Burrito.

Is this a good thing?

David Kim seems to think so.

He owns Fresh Enterprises, which runs 300 Baja Fresh Mexican Grill franchises and has been battling the Wahoo’s and Rubio’s of the casual Mexican food circuit.

Speaking from experience, I can tell you that when Baja Fresh first came on the scene, my friends and I ate there often, mostly for lunch.

But we all stopped going.

They just got boring and there were better alternatives.

Wendy’s bought them in 2002 for $275 million but ran it into the ground and sold it to Kim for $31 million in 2006.

Kim is trying to find a formula that will produce financial stability and growth.

He thinks dinner and drinks is the trick and has an Irvine prototype somewhere to prove it.

Anybody know where it is let us know.

In the meantime, are you really gonna go have a drink at Baja Fresh?