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Last Update: Wednesday September 20, 2017

Key Idea: Find a Deep Spiritual Connection

Marc Katz dresses the part of a successful businessman out of respect to his customers, his employees and his profession.

Key Question:

A: 

Do what you feel called to do.

Food is sacred to Marc. Of course Marc wants to make money — and he does — but he wouldn't do it in violation of his core beliefs.  Michael Novak wrote the book, "Business As Calling" as a way to articulate what we see in Marc Katz.  Marc feels called by God to prepare food for people. He is a third-generation, kosher butcher. Many of us owners do what we do because we are drawn to it from such a deep place all we can do to explain it is to say, "this is my calling."

Q: How does feeling "called" motivate business owners?

A:
  It causes us to make decisions for the greater good, not out of selfishness. Judy Jacobsen of Madison Park Greeting said, "if I have to choose between people or profits, I choose people."

Q:
  Why do academics and other elites assume that business people are greedy?

A:
  Academics have opted out of capitalism and they are uninformed on a deep level. They don't understand it. They read the paper and journalists are most often cynical about business. The big bad guys like Bernie Ebbers, Ken Lay and Richard Scrushy grab the headlines. The fact is millions of good business owners -- and good leaders in big companies -- are driven by self-interest not by greed. Marc is interested in preparing and serving food. He does this well and people pay him and he has a profitable business.

Topic for discussion: What is the difference between greed and self-interest. Aren't they the same thing?

Answer: What are you interested in? What are you trying to accomplish in your business? If you are motivated to provide a high level of customer service, to produce a quality product, to establish a nurturing environment for your employees, then that's your self-interest. That's what is important to you.

That's not greed because greed is gluttony and avarice, the motivation to improve one's own lot without any consideration for others. Self-interest, on the other hand, is our passion, what motivates us, why we start our own businesses and make successes out of them.

Michael Novak says self-interest is good and greed is bad. We recognize that all successful businesses are built on a foundation of successful relationships. Customer relations, employee relations and vendor relations, we must have all three to excel. These relationships are based on trust, mutual respect, and fair play. Businesses that don't understand this are not around very long. It is never just about the money (the bread). It's always about the people.

Here at the Small Business School, we've studied many successful small businesses. We always ask the business owners about their motivation for starting and operating the business. No one has ever told us they started their own business because they wanted to make a lot of money and they operate their business to make as much money as possible.

Instead, we hear time and time again that small business owners believe if they have a good plan and execute it well and fairly, the money, well it just comes.

Think about it

Are you "called" to do what you do? How does your business benefit the souls of those it touches? What's your self-interest?

Clip from: Katz's Deli & Bar

Austin, Texas: A New York deli in Texas... now that's a concept! Meet the man who believes corned beef is a food group of its own and whose mission has brought more than great eating to the music scene on 6th Street at Rio Grande.
 
Known around town as the unofficial Mayor of Austin, fifth generation kosher butcher Marc Katz, brought his family recipes from New York City and says his deli in Austin serves the best sandwich west of the Hudson River.  Marc tells us that he copies the best practices of the companies he admires and this led him to the insight, "You only get to keep what you give away."
 
Learn how this one-man-marketing band rings up millions in revenues from one location that brims with excitement. He has declared  "...fat is back" and added a milkshake to his menu that he calls "a heart attack in a glass." He warns, "You should not operate a vehicle under the influence of this milkshake."

Katz's Deli & Bar

Marc Katz, CEO & founder

Katz's Never Kloses, But Did
Once located at 618 West 6th St. at Rio Grande
Austin, TX 78701

Office:

Business Classification:
Restaurant

Year Founded:

Find a Deep Spiritual Connection

MARC: (Voiceover) This business is an extension of the Katz family. My father taught me this businesss. He learned it from his father.

Now remember also we're talking kosher here. There's religious meaning to what we do and there's religious knowledge. The kosher butcher has a place in the Jewish society.

HATTIE: And you are one?

MARC: I am a kosher butcher by trade. My father was a great success in this business. My father was my idol.The greatest thing my father ever did is the greatest thing I ever did, was be a successful restaurateur.
 
 

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