Today’s Show Recap

Thanks for listening to Makin’ It. On this week’s episode, on Show Buzz, the gang takes a look at “Restaurant Startup.” The Danger Report talks about Nordstrom. The Fix features True Religion, and Deep Dive takes a look at Amazon and why it’s so successful. Finally, on Makin’ It or Breakin’ it, the gangs asks the question: Is a handwritten letter better than email for sales? Let us know what you think of the show in the comments section at the bottom of the page!

It’s time to dig in and start the show!

Show Buzz:

Tommy, Todd and Brittany start the show with Show Buzz, and this week they take a look at CNBC’s “Restaurant Startup.” The premise of the show is similar to “Shark Tank,” which rarely features restaurateurs, but “Restaurant Startup” gets taken to another level. Investors hear pitches from teams and decide which one to give an opportunity to prove their mettle over a 36-hour period. The winning team gets $7,500, keys to a Los Angeles restaurant, and a group of people to help them succeed. If the team impresses any of the investors in the timeframe allotted, they have the potential for investment.

Many people don’t realize that making it in the restaurant business is complicated, and success is dependent on many factors. Restaurateurs have to balance a passion for the food they are producing, while making a product customers want as well as having an exciting presentation. Branding, service and business acumen also factor into the equation. Many restaurateurs fail because they either have a passion for their product and no business acumen or a sense of how to run a business but a lack of understanding of good food. Having both aspects are vital. What do you think of “Restaurant Startup?” Have you ever started a restaurant? How were you successful? Let us know in the comments section.

OMG Fact of the Week:

Walt Disney World Resort encompasses 30,500 acres, which is approximately the same size as San Francisco.

The Danger Report:

Next up is The Danger Report. This week, the gang takes a look at Nordstrom. Department and brick-and-mortar stores have been struggling with the prevalence of Amazon and other online shopping. Nordstrom is no exception despite their excellent customer service. The retailer has seen the lowest amount of foot traffic since 1972. Nordstrom is getting on the bandwagon by investing in and beefing up their online presence and having a great app for online shopping even though it still hurts their brick-and-mortar stores. Nordstrom is an example of a retailer changing the face of their business in order to compete in the online market. What do you think of Nordstrom’s strategy? Let us know in the comments section.

The Fix:

In the next edition of The Fix, Tommy, Todd and Brittany discuss True Religion. Once a major celebrity brand, a large part of their success was in their in-store presentation which compared to stores like Abercrombie and Fitch. However, True Religion is on a forecast to declare bankruptcy. More and more, people are buying denim online, eliminating the need for True Religion’s in-store experience. Moreover, with an upsurge in people wearing workout apparel, a need for denim has declined. True Religion has hired the law firm of Kirkland & Ellis to help them restructure their $500 million in debt. Kirkland & Ellis is one of the finest law firms in the country, and if anyone can help True Religion get back on track, they can. What do you think of True Religion? What do you think of their plan to get out of debt? Let us know in the comments section.

Vertex Foods Speed Loss Break ̶ What Successful People Eat for Breakfast:

Every day for lunch, Mark Wahlberg eats a salad, a turkey sandwich and a sweet potato. To lose 12 pounds in two days, try the Speed Loss Fruit and Juice cleanse. For more information on this cleanse, go to

 2 with Tommy:

Next up is 2 with Tommy, where Tommy takes two minutes and explores things that have recently come to our attention. This week, Tommy talks about goal setting. We’re into the New Year for a couple of months now. So you made your resolutions for 2017. Maybe you were going to join a gym; maybe you were going to lose 25 pounds; make another $50 grand; maybe this or maybe that….

But one thing that’s not a “maybe” with most of us, and that is we’ve already broken those resolutions multiple times by this point in the year. So I want to share with you a few things about resolutions, which is a fancy name for goal setting.

I’m going to share some secrets about goal setting that may surprise you. I’ve had the privilege and opportunity to meet and observe some of the world’s most successful people, and I want to tell you three things that I’ve observed about these super achievers and how they set their goals:

The Super Achievers are ahead of the game because they do set goals, which is something that most people don’t even do on New Year’s Day, or any other day of the year. The mere fact you even set goals puts you ahead of the pack. So you need to make sure that you have a vision, a plan, a path to achieve whatever it is you want to do. So set very clear and understandable and very defined goals. Write them down and keep them in front of you.

Start thinking about your goals exponentially as opposed to incrementally. Quit limiting yourself by setting a low bar. Instead of setting a goal to make 8% more money this year than las. Set a goal to make 100% more money this year. Don’t set a goal to lose 25 pounds when you need to lose a hundred pounds. Set ambitious goals and then go after them with a plan and a vengeance.

The last thing is if you are going to be making decisions about life-changing goals, you need to be ready to take on the fight, because it will be a fight, as life’s challenges always are. You need to be in the best physical, mental, emotional and spiritual state possible. You need to look good, feel good and be good, ready to take on the world and win.

So make this the year the real you shows up, the year when you refuse to fail, refuse to come in second place, and when you get knocked down, you get right back up and finish the fight, because you were born to win! This has been Two Minutes with Tommy, and I’ll see you at the top! For more great content, insights, inspiration and products go to

Deep Dive:

Next up in Deep Dive, the gang discusses why Amazon is so successful. Known all over the world as the largest online retailer and Walmart’s main rival, Amazon owes its success to its founder: Jeff Bezos. Always having had his vision for his company in mind, Bezos has been fearless in executing his success. However, with his strong customer focus, even setting up a personal email account to receive customer complaints, Bezos has created an extremely competitive environment across his company, often leading executives to vomit after board meetings. Regardless, customer service has been and remains Amazon’s focus, which makes the customer’s experience seamless, imploring his employees to work backward, from customer to product.

But people who buy from Amazon aren’t Bezos’ only customers. He also maintains balance by keeping his board and investors happy by running an efficient business. One way he achieves this is that he considers his warehouses and fulfillment centers as his stores and keeps no brick-and-mortar locations, saving on rent and labor. Another example of his efficiency is by putting his warehouses and office areas in depressed locations, which gets him huge tax breaks. Bezos’ efficiency in these areas saves him on factories and workforce, which are the top two expenses in business.

There are other ways Bezos keeps his investors happy and in their good graces despite having a track record of underperforming on earnings. Amazon earns 80 times the sales per location than brick-and-mortar retailers. Additionally, Bezos has only the warehouses to staff, which he can keep staffed at all hours, earning him money 24 hours a day.

Moreover, Bezos keeps innovating the business model. Amazon allows vendors to sell their products on its site and takes a cut of the profit, resulting in Amazon not having manufacturing costs. This big move gave retailers and small businesses a platform to sell their items while generating revenue.

Identifying value begins with thinking about an important un- or under-served job the customer wants done and coming up with a value proposition to serve that un- or under-served job the customer wants done. And, to transform a business requires being built to deliver value to the customer first. Bezos has had a winning mindset since 1997 when he started with a little online bookstore. What do you think of Amazon? What do you think of their customer service? What do you think of Jeff Bezos? How do you feel about how Bezos runs his company? Let us know in the comments section.

Makin’ It or Breakin’ It:

Finally, Tommy, Todd and Brittany end the show with the Makin’ It or Breakin’ It segment. This week they ask the question: Is a handwritten letter better than an email for sales? Prior to email, people’s mailboxes were loaded with junk mail. Now, people’s inboxes are suffering the same problem. However, whether people are sending messages to mailbox or an inbox, a handwritten letter always garners attention and stands out because of the emotional connection it evokes. Once a person sees actual handwriting, it triggers the part of the brain called the amygdala, which is responsible for human emotions. People are valuing what’s real right now because so much is fake. Much of our communication is automated and digitized, but a handwritten note is personal. Handwritten letters, because of the emotions involved, always get read and are a great way to connect with customers. How do you feel when you get a handwritten letter? What do you think of using handwritten letters to drum up sales? Let us know in the comments section.

Thanks for tuning in to Makin’ It. Let us know what you think of the show and if you have questions about your business, send us an email at or leave us a comment below. We love to hear from our listeners and we read comments on the air. We just might choose yours for next week’s show (so don’t forget to tune in!).


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Additional Resources for Entrepreneurs:

Order Tommy’s new book, The Way of the Rich at,, and

For more information on “Restaurant Startup,” click here.

For more information on Jeff Bezos, click here.

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