Monday, March 22, 2010

Clearing of the head

We're back from our trip to the Dells. What a joy. I gave a really fun tour on Friday and I walk outside of the Cultural Center and there are our friends and John all ready to go on a mini-road trip. It was so fun. It's like what other people's lives are like. We jabbered in the car, got to the Dells and it was snowing. So weird. But we just had such a good time. So much laughing, so many bits and John won 250$ at the casino! Yay John!

Friday evening and Saturday day and night I was really on vacation. I wasn't thinking about home or work or anything. I was totally present, it was really neat. Saturday night into Sunday morning before we left, I was all back up in the upcoming week...but that's good too. Even for just a day, to be carefree was really fun and nice. More of that please.

I also took care of the "big decision" today. The basics are I had a chance to buy into a global travel company franchise. They're big players, no doubt, great marketing and true global appeal. I could keep Chicago Elevated too, that was nice. I think that's what got me so confused. I would be the sole partner in Chicago and I'd write the tours and give them and make money from's just....and I finally had to say this to the guy (who was extremely kind, really) it's still someone else telling me what to do. They have a requirement that you have to have tour times available 5 days a week and run at least 2 tours. It might not sound like a lot, but it is. You have to be available almost all day 5 days a week. That means no Boystown Tour, no Second City Tour. And it means if you want to go anywhere or do anything you have to hire someone. Ugh. I just....

It's a great gig, it really is. They have people all over the world who are doing awesome, but it doesn't take away from the fact that there is someone else that is a part of my business now. And even if it's to my benefit, I just can't give up the power in any way.

And then I also went to the Art of Non-Conformity - which was so influential in how and why I started my business - and found this article, and this got me:

[instead of franchising] Start a real business. As in, your own business that belongs to you with your name on it. Success or failure is entirely up to you. Don’t go into debt if you can help it, but if you have no choice, at least your debt will go to your own venture instead of a corporate sandwich shop. I’ve never been good at following directions, so unless you want a color-by-numbers business, you should stay away too.

So, I turned it down. I'm freaking relieved. And they are going to make someone else really happy when they find the right match.


Anonymous said...


Dan Izzo said...

You absolutely made the right decision. I would've called on Friday - but I was with the boys (Trish was out of town) and had my hands full.

Like I said - why give somebody else money when you can use that money to promote your own business.

It's a brave decision because franchises always seem like the easy way to go. They aren't. 90% of them are a waste of money for someone who wants to own and run their own business. Franchises are really great for rich dudes (there's a reason Subway is owned by Doctor's Associates Inc.) who need an investment with interesting tax benefits. For winners like you - go it alone!


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Hixx said...

Thanks Dan. And no worries, honestly, just thinking about talking to you really helped me clear my head.

Thanks for being my guru. I'm being all emotional and you're being logical. I needed that.

Spammer - nice one!

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