DEREK OWNS A
cigar store. It's been his pipe dream for many years. He is off and running with the business, though he basically pays his bills and his rent, then gets more cigars and increases inventory. It can take a decade to really start making money in small business.
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George down the street has a cigar store, too. He's been in business for more than 50 years. He's a legendary figure in town. Some people love him. Others run screaming out of his store covering their ears and swearing they will never set foot in his cigar store again. The store is George's life. He can't even fathom doing anything else, even though he is well past retirement age.
The other day, Derek built a display in his front window. It had a lot of new and fun cigars, accessories, even books and magazines. It's eye-catching and a lot of people are checking it out.
Derek closed his store last night and walked out to his car. Lo and behold, George was parked behind him, and he was staring at his window display. George did not look happy. Then he noticed Derek, and he scowled, and he quickly pulled out and left.
Derek is unsure what to think of this. He would like to talk to George, but George is a bitter old man who won't give him the time of day. Derek thinks he and George have a lot in common. Both stores are doing pretty well. Going out on your own is a risky proposition, and it takes guts, endurance and faith you are going to make it. Derek has faith after five years of running his own business.
And while Derek is aware of his competition, he doesn't sweat what other people do. He does his homework and he offers cigars he knows his customers like. He treats his customers well. He makes sure each one is greeted when they come in to his store. He likes the personal interaction.
So Derek just lets it go when hearing about the other cigar store in town. He really doesn't care what the other place does. He takes care of business in his own cigar shop.
And if the competition wants to gawk at his nice window display, it's just fine by him.
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