Sales and KFC, what's Ken thinking now? He must love KFC. The answer is no. I've only been in a KFC once in the last 15 years.
One of my heroes is Colonel Sanders. I have a picture of him on the wall of my office. His story, along with the story of KFC, is inspirational. Harlan Sanders was an interesting person. He was revered and feared, rough-edged, and charming with only a sixth-grade education and a world of street smarts. At age 65, he was forced to sell his restaurant at auction. He collected his first social security check for $105.
He made up his mind that he was going to change things. He had one thing – a chicken recipe. Sanders was passionate about his recipe.
He took action and hit the streets. He would walk into a restaurant and say, "My name is Colonel Sanders, and I've got the best chicken recipe in the world. It's better than any you have ever tasted. All you have to do is pay me 5 cents for every chicken dinner you sell."
He would go from town to town, restaurant to restaurant. He didn't have much money, so he slept in the backseat of his car. He was 65 years old, sleeping in the back seat of his car!!!!!
When he sold KFC, 12 years later, for $2 million, there were 700 franchises – all on a handshake and grossing $37 million – those are 1964 dollars.
If Harlan Sanders had sat home and collected his social security, he would have died, leaving little impact. He took action to change his situation. As a result, Sanders became one of America's most beloved figures. He changed the eating habits of America. He was one of the fathers, if not the father, of fast food.
What can we learn from Colonel Sanders? We are never too old to start or make a difference. His defining characteristics are his persistence, passion for excellence, and, most importantly, his action.
How would your sales change if you took action and applied the Colonel's persistence and passion for excellence to your business?