“Stop and Sell the Roses”: lessons from business and life  

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jim-mccann-speakerJim McCann’s book tells the story of how to build a business on flower sales and his family’s small business. The book also highlights his grandmother’s leadership style. The author of this book was influenced by this lady who spent her time advising him in her kitchen. Jim McCann liked the meals she prepared for him and his brothers. And during family gatherings, the grandmother gave them advice on entrepreneurship and success. Jim came up with the idea of building a nationwide flower service while “listening to the radio as he was shaving”. His belief in the universal need for social connections and interaction led to his founding of 1-800-Flowers.com, which he has grown into the world’s leading florist and gift shop.

Combining innovative thinking with entrepreneurial zeal, McCann recognized early on the enormous potential in providing on-the-go customers with top quality gift products combined with personal service. McCann has also managed to integrate new technologies, such as 800-watts lines and the internet, often long before other retailers recognized the opportunities that these developments would provide both for business and consumers.

After several years of entrepreneurship and prosperity, the advice he wants to share with all those who dream of taking on the business someday, is to give priority to interpersonal relations. “If there is just one commandment for success in business, certainly in any retail business, it is this: First make relationship, then do business” he advises. For this businessman, the relationship is the transaction. The exchange of money and goods is just the external sign.

Another idea I learnt from Jim is to take risks. Risk means that there is a chance you will not get a return on your Investment. When you are in business, you need to consider the factors that could make you mitigate them. “The person or the business that is not making mistakes is not taking any risks, and therefore is not looking for new business opportunities” he said. The last recommendations  from his book “Stop and Sell the Roses : lessons from business and life ” are:

– Do something original

– Do not be complex to get any graduation in business

– Do not wait until you know everything to start

– Brand yourself.