When opinions of great people are heard and contribute to the decision-making process, it’s only then that a brand can reach its full potential. That’s why we don’t look at our people as employees, but as owners in the company. To make that a reality, everyone has stock options so that everyone truly shares in the company’s successes, from the shipping clerk to the CEO.
In addition to passion and a feeling of ownership, one final element that defines great people is the drive to win. I seek out sore losers, because people who hate to lose are always going to find a way to win. I’ve never run into anyone who hates to lose more than myself. It’s important to hire highly competitive people who are willing to do what it takes to win, especially when the odds are against them. All 50 people at Pirate’s Booty possess the energy, passion, commitment and dedication that it takes to build a great brand and be a winner.
For many people, being small means you’re the underdog.
Success isn’t about size. When you have a great brand and passionate people behind it, you’re never really the underdog. But take advantage of others’ perception of you as the underdog, because it’s one of your greatest weapons in battling the perceived giants. As I see it, the pressure is always on the big guys, because everyone always expects them to win. As underdogs, we can make unexpected, quick, and nimble moves, which give us a major advantage over large corporations. While it takes six months to a year to get a project off the ground at a big corporation, the so-called underdog has already jumped on the latest health and fitness trend and has moved on to the next big idea.
Anytime there are risks involved there are plenty of reasons to stay out of the game, but being an entrepreneur isn’t about excuses, it’s about results. So if you’re committed to your beliefs, build a brand by listening to potential customers, and find people who can share in your passion, because that’s what it takes to create the next big health and fitness trend that everyone else will be chasing after.
Mike Repole is Co-Founder of vitaminwater and Chairman of the Board at Pirate Brands