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Last Update: Saturday October 21, 2017

Key Idea: Keep Raising the Bar

Iguanas were once the new thing at Fluker Farms. Now the owners are looking for the next winning idea which they expect will be something that eats something that they sell.

Key Question:

A: 

No matter how hard you try, you can't stand still.  Keep trying new ideas to find the next big winner for your business.

Q: What keeps David motivated to keep on improving the business?

A: He said he feels responsible for every employee. He feels that people depend upon his leadership and we believe his generous spirit towards others and focus on others rather than himself is a key to his success.

Most small business owners reach a net worth which gives them the freedom to quit working. When this level is achieved, their efforts are for the benefit of employees and customers and this creates an on-going supply of positive energy.

If you keep raising the bar for the benefit of others, you will never want to retire because you wouldn't want to live without the satisfaction you derive from living such a useful life.

Think about it

What needs to be happening in your company that is not now happening?

Clip from: Fluker Farms - A Family Business

Port Allen, Louisiana: Small business is the source of jobs and new ideas in every economy. Here you'll see that necessity becomes the mother of invention. When somebody says, "That's impossible," entrepreneurs take up the challenge. Big business is about ROI and ROE; small business is most often all about family and power-love-and-money. That's a different value equation.

Let's travel to visit a different kind of farm. Not far from Baton Rouge where the mighty Mississippi River flows nearby, meet the Fluker family, David, then his Dad, sister, brother and their team.

Fluker Farms

David Fluker, Owner

1333 Plantation Road
Port Allen, LA 70767
2253437035

Visit our web site: http://flukerfarms.com

Office: 2253437035

Business Classification:
Agriculture

Year Founded: 1958

Keep Raising the Bar

HATTIE: (Voiceover) David and Howard see a bright future. Howard has plans to raise a bright blue iguana, which he believes will be a best-seller, and the two look forward to growing the iguana food business, and then, their newest invention.

HATTIE: We're gonna be able to buy Fluker chocolate-covered crickets in the Sheraton Hotels, any day now.

Unidentified Employee #5: Yep.

DAVID: There's kind of a little story to this. We started doing this at the trade shows. We were doing trade shows, and we wanted people to come to our booth, so we did a chocolate-covered cricket.

HATTIE: So at the trade show, you had all these other products.

DAVID: We had the crickets at the trade show at the time when we started our...

HATTIE: The live crickets.

DAVID: The live crickets. And we wanted to get people in our booth, so we did a chocolate-covered cricket. And that worked out fairly well, you know. We had quite a few people come up for that. Well, then we got to thinking, we said, `Hey, why don't we do a button with it, and that way people can walk around the show with our name on it, and that'll tell them to come to our booth.'

HATTIE: What a good idea!

DAVID: So we did the `I Ate A Bug Club'...

HATTIE: And it worked.

DAVID: Oh, man, it was a smash. We ran out like the first day. We had people lined up to get the buttons. And once we saw the response that the button and the chocolate drew together, we said, `This is a product.' And it's taken quite a bit to bring this product to the market, you know, by the time we got all the nutritional analysis and everything like that. You know, we've had a lot of press; Rolling Stone, Wall Street Journal. I've done 20-30 radio station interviews, really all based on the chocolate covered cricket because they find that fascinating. And I've just picked up a Japanese order to do the button in Japanese.

RICHARD: The cricket has a 63 percent protein value.

HATTIE: So it's low fat, high protein. And crunchy.

DAVID: We supply the crickets...

HATTIE: Do you send these to a candy maker?

DAVID: Yes, there's a candy maker down in New Orleans who makes the candy for us. My father, whenever he first did it, he was frying the crickets, and my wife, who is a registered dietitian, made us start baking the crickets because it was healthier. So now we bake the crickets.

HATTIE: We have a low fat, low fat chocolate covered cricket.

DAVID: That's it.

HATTIE: Reduced fat, because the chocolate has fat, but the cricket is pretty healthy.

DAVID: The cricket's real healthy. As a matter of fact, the only thing not healthy for you in the whole thing's probably the chocolate.

HATTIE: The best part.

DAVID: The crickets are...

HATTIE: No, the crickets are the best part.

DAVID: Why don't you try one?

HATTIE: OK. All right. I'm sure you've had them.

DAVID: I've had plenty.

HATTIE: I'm trying to think of a reason not to have to do this.

Have you eaten one?

Employee #5: Yes, I have. I ate one today, as a matter of fact. They had some kids come out, and...

HATTIE: Do you eat them regularly?

Employee #5: Yes.

HATTIE: What do they taste like?

Employee #5: A Nestle Crunch.

HATTIE: So the thing to do is just realize that this is protein, this is healthy and--Oh! I'm a member of the--it's good! It really is, it's not--it's really good--`I Ate a Bug Club.'

(Voiceover) Congratulations to Diane, David and Howard. They are doing what most haven't done. They're taking their dad's creation into the next century.

(Voiceover) What advice would you give someone who's starting a business today?

DAVID: What I would tell them is that remember that your day does not end at five when the clock stops, because your brain's always gonna be thinking about your business. It's not like you can go home and just totally forget about your job. So remember, there are advantages to working for somebody and there's advantages, you know, to owning your own business. The disadvantage is that your brain never stops thinking about the business.

HATTIE: To other people, owning a business might just look like rosy colored...

DAVID: That it's the greatest thing. You have nothing to do all day. You just sit back in a big chair, smoking a cigar, you know, talking to your buddies. But it doesn't work like that. You know, when problems develop, you're the one that has to solve that problem. You know, when the customer's gone through all the channels, and they want to talk to the top guy, you're the guy that they talk to.

HATTIE: How do you motivate yourself?

DAVID: How do I motivate myself? Well, I mean, I guess I just feel kind of responsible because there's a lot of people working here. I know that they're counting on their jobs. My family's counting on me. That really adds a lot of motivation to it. I mean, I know that if all things don't do well, then it's really--no one else is to blame except for myself, because I'm the one calling the shots. You know, if it's a big decision, my family and I, we all get together and we discuss it, but I know that my suggestions and what I want to say carry a lot of weight. And, you know, they'll typically go with what I want to do, you know, provided it's not totally ludicrous. But at the same time, you know, that's a lot of motivation in itself, knowing that you're the guy that's got the ball, and if you drop the ball, well, then you've totally hurt the lives of your father, your sister, your brother, my wife, and all their family, you know? I mean, it's a lot. So I just kind of feel responsible for it.

In the Studio

HATTIE: Want to grow your business? Do what David did: look at your database to discover missed opportunities. We'll see you next time.

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