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Last Update: Thursday September 23, 2021

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This business started as a dive-on-the-pier


Newport, Oregon: In this episode of the show, we continue our walk down the Main Streets of America to see how one person with a vision has transformed the town where she was born and where she has chosen to stay. Life here is so rich with the intangibles that even her children have returned to this little seaport town and are helping to build the business and family legacy.

Here you find an extraordinary employer-employee partnership.
Our cities and towns are looking more and more alike because big business tends to homogenize. Entrepreneurs diversify. They reach into their soul to find something new. Wherever Cindy McEntee opens a restaurant along the coast of Oregon, she adds uniqueness, personality and charm.  Mo's is an icon on the West Coast, and it is just a chowder house.

But this is also a place where over 200 people (during high season) will generate $3.5 million in annual sales. It is a home away from home. And, it has become a destination eating place. It is Mo's Chowder. And, the person who made her grandmother's "business" a business is Cindy McEntee.

Cindy McEntee came to our attention because she was the state of Oregon's Small Business Person of the Year. Then, when we looked further, we found many more awards and citations. To be selected as the study for a show, a business must come up on everyone's list as being " ... loved by their community and respected within their industry."

We first met Cindy in the White House in June of 2001 when she was named Oregon's Small Business Person of the Year and she was the first runner up for the National Small Business Person of the Year award.

From a little joint on a narrow little street to the big White House on Pennsylvania Avenue, we discover how a fisherman's hangout becomes a national treasure.

View all the video clips from this episode of the show...

How do I build a strong company?

Be a place people enjoy hanging around.

Cindy has made Mo’s an attractive, fun place to be and has worked hard to promote tourism in Newport. Mo's Chowder is the anchor of modern tourism in Newport, Oregon. And tourism is new to Newport which is hard to believe now. It is an old fishing town. It is still a working port with all the sights and smells you can imagine that come with hauling in fish from the sea. As the fishing industry has changed, there is less processing going on in Newport. At the same time, the city fathers (and that includes Cindy) have been working on making the waterfront attractive so tourist will come and watch the fishermen and spend some money in the town.

How does Cindy make Newport special? Artwork. She recruited artists to paint murals. Some of the world's most famous have painted large surfaces on Newport's waterfront buildings. Cindy has commissioned an artist to do a bronze statue of Mo and other business owners who are doing their part to make their storefronts attractive but at the same time keep the spirit of the working port.

Cindy recognized that "we eat where our children want to eat," and she made her eateries children-friendly. In some businesses, the user of the product or service is not the same person as the buyer of the product or service. This situation requires dual marketing strategies influencing both the buyer and the user. Chuck E. Cheese combined pizza with indoor playgrounds, two of children's favorites. This is a classic example of a business marketing to the user who in turn pressures the buyer, resulting in revenues and profits to the seller.

Think about it

Who is your buyer and who is your user, and are they the same? How do you make your business uniquely attractive to your customers?

  Ref: e1610p977


Watch and listen to the key insights of people who achieved against great odds. Nobody expected them to win. Even in the face of failure, they were tenacious. They share their insights... "If I can do it, you can, too." From over 200 episodes produced for PBS, go inside a business to get the real story from the person who did it. Over 1000 powerful points (videos) from such interviews - take a minute today to watch. It may change your life... certainly your business.

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Start a Business

Meet Donna Baase, Cowgirl Enterprises. She started her business in her kitchen cooking up natural herbs to make salves and ointments.  She is an advocate for all women to be a cowgirl -- "Start the business of your dreams."

Key Question: How do I start a business?


Grow a Business

Meet Anne Beiler, founder Auntie Anne's Pretzels.
One of the most amazing stories in our library; this woman has made billions and has given most of it away. She is on a mission to create real businesses based on love and the blessing of an absolutely delicious pretzel.

Key Question: What is a path for growth?


Buy a Business

Meet Vicky Carlson; she started as a receptionist. She got her foot in the door, then learned every part of the business.  She was the employee to rose to the top.  Then, she creatively worked out terms to buy an Office Pavilion franchise in San Diego. This business is now the premier office design and furnIture supply firm in the city.

Key Question: Can my business be my legacy?

Lorraine Miller, founder of Cactus & Tropicals, Salt Lake City, Utah

Sell a Business

Meet Lorraine Miller, founder Cactus & Tropicals.   She built her business with love and affection. Her garden shop and nursery was a great place just to be and her group received numerous awards for their work in the community.  But, it came time  to sell.  She talks about the signposts and the process.

Learn eight possible ways to exit your business!

Key Question: Who is the best buyer?

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