Posts tagged Leadership
Steven Schussler’s book “It’s A Jungle In There” is making its way to England. Due to popular demand, readers and fans of the U.K. have expressed an interest and a desire for the book, so Sterling Publishing , Barnes and Noble and other independent book sellers have teamed up to distribute Steven’s book throughout the U.K in July.
Leading Blog: A Leadership Blog: It’s a Jungle in ThereBy Michael McKinney
Created by Steven Schussler, the Rainforest Café holds the record as one of the top-grossing restaurant chains in the world and was the first restaurant concept to be featured at every Disney theme park worldwide. Schussler shares in …
Leading Blog: A Leadership Blog – http://www.leadershipnow.com/leadingblog/
It’s a Jungle in There
Anyone that has ever been to the Rainforest Café, knows it’s a treat. Created by Steven Schussler, the Rainforest Café holds the record as one of the top-grossing restaurant chains in the world and was the first restaurant concept to be featured at every Disney theme park worldwide. Schussler shares in It’s a Jungle in There, what it takes to make it happen and the lessons he learned that can be applied to your dream.
Schussler embodies the five Ps of successful entrepreneurship—Personality, Product, Persistence, People, and Philanthropy—that he teaches in the He writes, “As a leadership quality, one’s own passion is what galvanizes others into action.” Passion and persistence has played a big part in everything Schussler has done. It’s “not going through the motions but going through with the emotions.”
Schussler says that he’s always wanted to create a rainforest themed restaurant but the problem was getting investors interested in the idea. To get their attention he turned his home into a tropical rainforest. “Over a period of a few years, my standard split-level home was transformed into a jungle dwelling complete with rock outcroppings, waterfalls, rivers, layers of fog, mist that rose from the ground, a thatched hut covered with vines on the roof, tiki torches, a twelve-foot neon and a full-size replica of an elephant near the front door.”
“In the bedroom, my bed was ‘paradise’ sign, constructed to look like it was suspended in a tree….Birds and animals moved freely through the area during showings of the house….Every room, every closet, every hallway of my house was a ‘scene’: an attempt to present my idea of what a rainforest restaurant would look like in actual operation….No venture capitalists were going to invest their money in my far-out concept without actually seeing it, so I transformed my house into my vision of what a rainforest restaurant would look like in order to make them believe in my dream.”
Naturally, this would catch the attention of your neighbors (and law enforcement) too. There were problems of all sorts as you can imagine. And Schussler writes, “Being passionate doesn’t totally shield you from moments of doubt.” But his passion finally won out.
“How far are you willing to go to see your dream realized?
In short, high-content chapters, he explains his guiding philosophy and backs them with concrete experiences. He has two quotes framed on the wall over his desk: “When you’re out of quality, you’re out of business” and “The noblest search is the search for excellence.”
He talks about looking for “enhancement gaps.” Those gaps between “what you are seeing and what you could create to make what you are seeing better by providing some product or service.”
He asks, “Are you willing to help other people succeed even when it’s not a requirement of your job to be of assistance?”
Self-control: “What you don’t want to do is say things and/or act in a manner that will create negative impressions and the unwanted consequences that are certain to follow.” You must know your audience.
Burning Bridges/Writing People Off: Don’t do it. “What I learned that day reconfirmed my belief that ego can be a killer, especially an unchecked ego. Most entrepreneurs need to have a healthy ego, but you also have to be realistic. That’s a very delicate balance—the kind of balance you need to cross a bridge you tumbled off the first time around.”
ajungleintherebook.com/endorsements”>Donald Trump says, “His story is not only compelling, it’s fun, inspiring and full of sound business advice.”
Without a college degree, Schussler became the CEO of a company twice named by Fortune Magazine as one of the top 100 fasted growing companies in America.
Here are some of the questions guiding our discussions:
1. You had some major challenges in the beginnings. Tell us about the process that lead to the success of RainForest Cafes…
2. You have said the importance of researching a new product or service concept is paramount to success. How does an entrepreneur approach the matter of getting market validation for a new concept?
3. So much of doing business is about relationships. Let’s talk about the power of a first impression. I think you have a story to share around this theme.
4. We’re sitting together in late 2010. What is your sense about the current business-startup environment. How can entrepreneurs overcome the tight credit markets and low consumer spending headwinds.