In my 46+ years in business I have had the fortunate opportunity to work for a great many leaders. At Tandy Corporation I worked for Jim Nichols, Ron Stegall, John Roach, Clint Thomas, and Vic Sholis. I also had the opportunity to work alongside Len Roberts, Lewis Kornfeld, and Alan Bush. At Cash America I got to work for Dan Feehan and at Buxton I got to work for Tom Buxton. Each one of these leaders had different strengths and weaknesses. Some were intellectually brilliant, some had great leadership skills, and some just simply had the strength to will things done. But each had their philosophy and had the unique ability to get their team to buy into that vision.
Here at Axcelora our vision is unique. There are many companies that have the ability to make an appointment for you with a retail or restaurant organization. They employ actors, cold callers, bots, and other types of impersonal touches. When I was President of Buxton we tried using these services for a couple of years so we could free our best sales people up to actually spend their time presenting to prospects. It was expensive and it did not work. We paid them if they did or did not make us an appointment. They had no idea what the retail/restaurant business was about, and it was the most impersonal type of contact you could get.
At Axcelora we sat as a group (that group of four had about 140 years of experience) before we made any attempt at a business, and determined what our philosophy of business was going to be. Because,we realized that, if we knew what we were going to be about as a group, then wherever the business was going to take us we would never lose sight of our vision.
Our first determination was that we were going to service retailers and restaurants. That is what we knew about even though one of us was a merchant, one from marketing, one from finance, and one from store operations. We all knew retail. We next agreed that we were going to leverage our knowledge from our careers. We knew retail/restaurants and how they worked. We also knew the B2B world from both an agency point of view and a selling point of view. We also knew about multi-unit management and all of pitfalls it could have. We then agreed that we were not going to make things complicated. We all knew, from previous excursions in business, that the more complicated things were, the lower the likelihood of success. And finally, the last thing we agreed (and we all knew from the beginning), the customer was always going to come first. If we could help our customers become successful, then we would have success. Or, as my Cuban friends in Miami used to tell me, “If we take a shower than you get wet.” (Maybe that is why it rains so much in Miami)
So our Philosophy was set. We were going to help people that wanted to work with retailers and we were only going to be happy when they were successful. That has led us to try things that work (our initial appointment setting program through our “Partners), and things that don’t work (our Temporary Executive program). And, it has encouraged us to continue to try new things like our Customer Advisory Boards where we have our first two clients up and working. And, while we are not bots, cold callers, or Oscar Award winner actors, we are always thinking about your business and how we can help you win. So, tell your friends about us and ask them to give us a call.
Rich Hollander is a retail expert with over 40 years in the industry.