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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Here's wishing a very Happy and Safe Thanksgiving to all of you out there. This is truly one of my favorite holidays.

I've been working on a post the last few weeks. I've had discussions with some pretty smart people. Professors, Finance folk, and just some pretty brainy people. The conversations centered around the economy.

The question I am asking is what has more impact on the other... The global economy on the local, or the local economy on the Global?

Arguments could be made for either, but what I am finding out is that the answer is more important (and complicated) than you think.

I will also be spreading the word this entire month about where you can go to do your Holiday shopping LOCALLY! If you don't already know, there are some pretty cool places to go find the perfect present for your loved ones! Everything from electronics to clothes!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

It's the process man!

I've written about this before and probably will again, but it never ceases to amaze me... that is the power of an idea with a dose of passion, a smidgen of ambition and the right approach to defining and achieving their goals.

When someone gets an idea in their head, and really focuses on the possibilities, the outcome only becomes dependent on effort. The freedoms we have within this country make the success of these ideas possible. Not the success, but the ability to achieve that success. But why are some successful and some aren't? It's the process put in place to achieve the end game.

In my travels this past week, I ran into 4 specific people from my past. All had spent years embarking on a journey to see their ideas come to a realization. In all cases they were ideas turned into business opportunities. One was a product, two were a service, and the 4th was based on delivering content to the masses. What they are isn't important. What is important is the approach they all took to achieve their goals.

In all cases strategies where defined, objectives where stated, and tactics where implemented to realize their goals surrounding their IDEA. The highlighted statement is what all four spoke about WITHOUT using those specific words.

It's a process that is utilized everyday by the most successful businesses/companies/people. It's a process that gives the idea the most chance at success. In fact if you can define each one, the only way you fail is if you don't do the work. It's what separates the successful from the ones that never really achieve full potential.

It simplifies the complex to allow results in the most efficient manner. It's what I see everyday in local business. It's how they win. It's how they are successful, proven time and time again.

When an idea, goal or initiative is approached in this manner, success is easier achieved. More importantly, success is more clearly defined and measured as well. It also allows you, or makes you think smarter about your business enabling you to take your idea further, or on a larger track if so desired.

That process isn't only relegated to the business world either. You can and should use it in everyday life. Let's look at an example...

Two different families think about taking the family to Disney World next year. Both need to save for it because neither will have the disposable income come next fall.

One family marks it on the calendar and says "We think we can make this happen, we'll discuss it after the holidays". The other starts the process.

IDEA: We want to take the family to Disneyland next fall.

Objective: Have enough money and time to be able to do so

Strategy: Cut expenses, earn more money

tactics: Less eating out, smaller birthday parties for the kids, get a part time job, have a garage sale, sell other things on ebay/ craigslist/ classified ads, smaller Christmas this year

Which family do you think has the better chance of getting to Disney world next fall? The family that started the process is almost halfway there. They still have questions to ask, such as how much will the trip actually cost, what options are available, how long can they go, how much will they have to save/ earn/ etc, to make it happen. But the process has been started, and they are building a road map to achieve a stated goal.

Now, nothing gets done without doing the work. The process however, defines the work that is needed. It doesn't create unnecessary work, rather it clearly defines the work that is needed to achieve your goals.

The best small businesses utilize this process everyday. Whether they want to expand, add a product line, build a larger building, add more employees, whatever. The process allows them to do it intelligently and do it smarter.

If you have an idea (I don't know anyone who hasn't spoken about something they wanted to do as a business), start to think about it in this way. You'll be amazed how real it becomes.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Conshy Has a New Gig!

Conshy has a new venue for all you bar hoppers out there! Actually, that statement is pretty unfair to the new place that opened last Friday. It's more than just a "bar". I think it will redefine Conshy and it's night life.

8 East opened up in the same spot that E.Y. Toads use to occupy. Let me tell you... it's no Toad's.

Bob Storti and Brad Craig figured at some point in their life they would like to open a restaurant/ bar and provide a hip and fun place for the local community. I can tell you personally that Conshy has never seen anything like this. It's certainly not the standard fair that has occupied Conshy in the past.

After 4 years of work and more than $500, 000 in renovations, Bob and Brad have realized their dream. I was at opening night on Friday and the place was a madhouse. With two bars and two dining areas (one each, both upstairs and one downstairs) the place is Bangin'! Seriously, look at the pics below.

The menu is fantastic and more than reasonable. I had the Black and Bleu sliders and were unbelievable. The bar is stocked with top shelf liquors and a multitude of beers as well.

"We really wanted a very modern and hip place for people to come out and enjoy. We worked really hard to make it exactly as we envisioned it.", said Bob Storti.

The pride these guys took is evident in the design and construction of the entire place. In fact, the work was done solely by the partners. Having a background in contracting helps, and being someone who used to go to Toads every so often, I can tell you that the work they did is really unbelievable. Make plans to go to this place. You won't be disappointed!

Andrew Davis, a frequent Conshy visitor from Manayunk said, "Seriously, we've been waiting for a place like this to open in Conshy. It's really nice, in a great location, and rivals a city bar in it's atmosphere and design."

I spoke to several patrons there and all were more than satisfied. It's been a long time coming, and now you can finally experience it yourself!