Friday, July 1, 2016

Are you hurting your friends company?

Years ago I was speaking with an acquaintance in business and they happen to ask me about living in Austin Texas.  At the time I lived in Lakeway Texas just outside Austin on beautiful Lake Travis.  My home overlooked the Lakeway marina cove and I always recommend a good friends business further down the lake on Lake Travis- Carlos N Charlies.  I do believe in supporting my friends to the utmost of my ability, so I tried to never miss a chance to tell people to go to my buds places like Carlos N Charlies or their other restaurants like Iron Cactus and newly acquired Z Tejas grill.  Carlos N Charlies would have large concerts or tremendous July 4th fireworks displays and tickets were sometimes hard to come by.  So I was taken back when this person asked if I could get them free tickets and I of course naturally responded why on earth would I get them free tickets?.  I realized that I was not the only one confused at this point in the conversation. Don't get me wrong for both Mike & Gary (owners Iron Cactus, Z Tejas Grill, and Carlos n Charlies/past) comped me more meals, drinks, and free concert tickets than I ever felt comfortable with.  Sometimes I asked for tickets and I was never told no, especially after too many drinks in Devil's Cove on Lake Travis, but I did try to limit what I asked for.  I'm sure I failed miserably at this, but I tried.

Looking back I was developing a philosophy subconsciously that I adhere to violently today and in conversations with other business owners I'm not alone in this.  Because it's a friends business I don't want something from them for free and I hope you don't get anything for free either.  Free means that is money out of my friends pocket, less money their family has, less money for the business to hire and keep employees, and less money to expand in the future.  Generosity is one thing, but when either you find yourself or others expecting and/or demanding something of your friends company I hope you pause for second and ask yourself this question.  Are you helping your friends to become successful or are you a drain on your friends company and resources?

I have asked for things of friends and they in turn have asked me.  I'm honored to do what I can to meet each request, but sometimes it does get tough when the request end and the demands start.  Obviously something triggered this post and you would be correct in thinking this.  I'm eager to share Texas Angel Oil with the world and I offer free bottles all day long to close friends, veteran groups, deep discounts to others, and generous discounts to strangers.  At the same time I received a message this week, "I'm out of Texas Angel Oil and you need to send me a bottle tomorrow immediately!".  I need to?  Really?  Keep in mind this is a person who is extremely financially sound and to my knowledge has never-ever ordered from me.  Nor to my knowledge have they ever shared their love of Texas Angel Oil with anyone either directly or on social media.  Most of all, this is someone who has never simply said thank you.  A thank you is not needed, but it sure would be welcome.  Yes I'm sending them a bottle by the way, but it will be next week.

I'm very grateful for my friends and I hope you take a second when you can to utilize their businesses.  I give you my word that my friends will not let you down and your money will be well spent.  I'm sure your friends would welcome you spreading the word on their companies and spending your money with them as well.

In no particular order and this is not a complete list:

Iron Cactus


Z Tejas Grill

Sumo Ventures

Vaught Studio


Shiner Brewery

Wu-Yi Tea Company

Rhino Marketing

Superior Exteriors 


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