Important Question



From: SethGodin:

“The most important question in marketing something to someone who hasn’t purchased it before is – “Do they trust me enough to believe my promises?”

“Without that, you have nothing.”

Earn trust, earn trust, earn trust. Then you can worry about the rest.”

I don’t recall hearing this in Business School. Times were different of course. What I do recall and perhaps it was just intuitive that earning trust was the only way to do business….”old school” if you will.

Our family business wasn’t started on business school principles….it was based on common sense and treating the customers fairly….earning their trust. We failed perhaps a few times….it was our fault we didn’t work hard enough.

Trust is an intangible….either a business has it or doesn’t have it. If not that business won’t last.

I  believe that most folks would not remember us so much for the products we sold….but that we could be trusted.

On-Line Order


Pizza on line

We were rushed last night….so a pizza was decided on for dinner.

In the past, the only way to order was to make a phone call. Now it is the norm to order on-line. Go to the web site….select the size….topping….etc. Examine the specials….and make the choice. Only a few clicks and the pizza is almost on its way to the oven. Instantly back comes an email with the estimated ready time. It could not be simpler.

Ordering on-line is good for the customer and the pizza maker….fewer mistakes and better control of costs. All the result of the Internet.


Not a match

Join Our Team

An organization that I am familiar with has five members on the leadership team….with one member being brought on in mid 2013.

This new member has just announced that he is leaving this leadership postion….this all of course rather suddenly.

From this persons note regarding his resignation two points stood out:

  • He was convinced by the senior leader to join this team.
  • He expected that this position to be something different from it actually was.

I don’t know any further details….though from all indications this was a mismatch from the beginning. Being on the team means being a team member. From what I saw on the surface….it was not the right match. 




I ventured into our local Town & Country Hardware Store (formerly ACE Hardware) and was surprised to see the popcorn machine missing. It was located up near the cash register and alwys had  fresh popcorn. Though the bags were small (and free)….they were enough to be satisfying treat.

The popcorn….I thought was a nice reward for being a customer and also to make the Town & Country  business different…perhaps like the old type of hardware store.

So why is the popcorn machine missing?

On my next trip….some investigation into the missing popcorn.

Scout Coffee

San Luis Obispol, CA

Scout Coffee

I am always on the lookout for new coffee ventures. Scout coffee in San Luis Obispol, CA has just opened in the past few weeks.

San Luis Obispol was a possibility in our search for a new home after leaving MI….it had some great features….the main drawback too far from families.

This a nice story how the owners got started:

There are numerous other coffee shops including Starbucks and a Peet’s in San Luis Obispol….so what makes Scout Coffee different? From the article they:

  • Source coffee  from Venue coffee
  • Make serious milkshakes
  • Bake their own baked goods

Every great business differentiates itself from the competition.



ICBM Launch 3

I have written before on this issue (01.16 .14)

Though my work centered on the R & D side of the Minuteman ICBM….my next air force assignment was the Site Activation Task Force (SATAF)  at Grand Forks AFB. The SATAF responsiblity was to activate and turnover the Minuteman System….the silos….launch control (above photo) and support facilities to Strategic Air Command.

The current issues in the missile force are certainly leadership centered both at the command level and HQ levels. If the mission is still vital, then it must be clear to the Air Force leadership and those at the three missile bases. I would suspect that over time the mission became hazy and consequently the ethics unfortunately become diluted.

A perspective from Time Magazine:

The fundamental question – can USAF leadership put the train (missile force) back on the tracks?


Something Different


About a year ago, Firewurst, a new restaurant, opened in the busy shopping center near us. Firewurst’s initial concept was premium grilled sausages & dogs. Recently, they have added burgers to the menu.

Since the first opening….two new locations have opened. One being near a new Bass Pro Shops in Cary. Today’s N&O had a full-page color Firewurst advertisement (expensive) welcoming Bass Pro customers and team.

The reviews (though always subjective) have been fairly good. The intent of the owners would seem to be to franchise the concept. Like any business, consistency and product quality will determine success.