Don’t be afraid to ask questions – or just ask in general. Knowledge is power. The more you know the better you can understand your customer.
Steve Houck is a serial entrepreneur with the desire to conquer the world one SLRRRP at a time.
MBA, Dynamic, Motivated,Top Performing Sales/Marketing/Events Manager with over 10 years of experience in the Consumer Packaged Goods Industry, Alcohol/Beverage industry.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
It’s a matter of prioritizing opportunities and projects. Understanding each aspect of the business and how fast things can turn from start to finish. We have amazing people on our team and giving them the tools to achieve is a high priority. Balancing that with a budget and realistic time frame is always challenging.
Alcohol is a heavily regulated and watched industry. Figuring out customs, state laws, freight, and contracts can suck up whole days. Working with our marketing and Sales team is the fun stuff. Working on long term project to introduce new innovations and packaging is really cool. Just catching up with our team and getting feedback from the market really keeps things interesting.
How do you bring ideas to life?
We like to take ideas from our team and the market and talk them out as owners and see what is realistic and what are great ideas for when it makes more since. When you see customers and retailers get excited about something you know you have something special and those things become priorities.
What’s one trend that excites you?
The Trend that is really exciting us right now is that everyone really cares about safety and creating a better experience. With everything going on in the world people care a lot about safety. Traditional Jell-shots leave a lot to the imagination as to whats actually in it. We have a sealed product that is Vegan and 6x distilled vodka (I can’t get into too much of the details but we are currently working with a well known safety advocate who will help bring tips to our consumers about celebration and consumption responsibility). With SLRRRP consumers can spend more time enjoying their experience and less time worrying about what may or may not be in their Gelatin shot.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive?
Don’t be afraid to ask questions – or just ask in general – Knowledge is power. The more you know the better you can understand your customer.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Don’t let a loss set you back, don’t dwell on something bad. Other opportunities will arise.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
Things happen for a reason and anything great will take a minimum of three times as long as you expect them to.
What is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
When you make a decision ask yourself why? Did you get your teams input. Try to think something through from production to consumer end point. Does it change the land scape?
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
Nothing beats showing up everyday and tackling your to do list. Even if you don’t complete it, you are getting closer. Work on the large projects while you complete everyday tasks.
What is one failure you had, and how did you overcome it?
We hired a marketing company to help create our brand and sales deck who was not completely bought in. It was early on and it was really hard to get what we needed out of them. The fix was to find a team that shared our passion and drive and really takes the time to think out our ideas with us.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
I think there are so many creative people who are out there who settle for a job that doesn’t excite them. I’d love to see an app that you can put your interests in and it would help to match you with jobs that fit your interests. Something that is not experience or industry based but interest and talent based…
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
Altra Trail Running shoes, Seriously the most comfortable shoes to run in. Its easy to get caught up in work. Taking care of yourself is important. Running (and Yoga) are a great place for me to clear my head. Mind body and soul is an important balance in business. Don’t let business rule your life.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?
Google Dox – our whole business is organized on it. You can send your whole team to one location and you know you have the most recent version.
What is the one book that you recommend that should be read and why?
David vs. Goliath – Malcolm Gladwell – I subscribe to the theory anyone can do anything they set their mind to. It speaks to how our weakness are really attributes and help us to overcome obstacles.
What is your favorite quote?
“Let’s unwrite these pages and replace them with our own words.” – Rise against
- Listen, Prioritize, & act (its really important to do it in that order).
- Question why – validate that it not just because you like something or want to do it – does it make sense for the whole business (this will tell you if its worth the risk you are thinking about taking).
- If you make a bad decision, own it and move on.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.