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Key Idea: Inspect What You Expect

Navarro Pharmacy is big now. There's a corporate office and it would be easy for the owners to sit at their desks and look at reports generated by the company's sophisticated software. However, Luis Navarro visits stores everyday and on this day he lets Hattie tag along.

Key Question:


There was a time when you did everything to make your business function correctly.  To grow beyond yourself, you need processes and those usually include written reports and middle managers.  Navarro has plenty of documentation and dozens involved in store leadership.

Q:  What does Luis still do everyday?

He inspects what he expects. He visits a store everyday. This way he can see with his own eyes if the store is clean, if there are cars on the parking lot and if there are lines at the cash registers. He can also look into the eyes of employees, he can smile at them, he can ask them how they are doing and how their families are doing.

No matter how big you get, you will never be a success sitting at a desk.

If by chance you are dreaming of delegating the important task of physically watching the business up close, you've got the wrong dream.

Think about it

Do you need to spend more time looking at what causes the reports rather than just the reports?

Clip from: Navarro Discount Pharmacies

Miami: In this city, a destination for new Spanish-speaking Americans, finding somebody who understands you, knows and feels your pain, is a seismic relief. With a profound empathy, this family's business is committed to service and to solving very big problems for their customers.

With an abiding willingness-to-serve, this family's business is one of the most profitable per square foot of any retail store in the USA. When we taped this story there were 12 locations generating $160 million in annual sales and jobs for nearly 600.

So many new medicines are announced every day, it is almost impossible for anyone to keep up. But, those new Americans with a limited command of English, and our elders who are taking multiple medicines, have special challenges.

This family has always been committed to serving their customers. Eighteen-hour days, seven-days-a-week -- whatever it took to get the job done and keep their customers in good health -- these people have done it.
In the process, they have created a first-class business.

Opened in the United States in 1961, the two sons became pharmacists; and today, with 600+ employees, they have become the most productive pharmacy per square foot in the USA and they are a force for good that is helping to reshape Miami as a world-class community.

A classic family business, three generations of compassionate people are involved at every level of the operations.

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Navarro Discount Pharmacies

Jose Navarro, CEO

5959 NW 37th Ave
Miami, FL 33142

Visit our web site:

Office: 305-633-3000

Business Classification:
Retail, Pharmacy

Year Founded: 1961

Inspect What You Expect

LUIS: (Voiceover) I'll pick a store every day. And I'll spend most of the day in that store. I try to look for problems. You have to eyeball it.

You also have to talk to the store personnel.

They give you a feeling of what is going on on a day-to-day basis. They give you a good sense of what the customers are asking for.

HATTIE: So does the manager know you're coming? Or...

LUIS: No, they don't. They never know. They're never expecting me. The store managers for us--you know, it's such a small group, it's like family.

Like, this particular manager, we've known him for a lot of years. So they really have nothing to fear, or anything. They know that we're here to help them out.

HATTIE: Right. Well, when Jose said one of the hardest things about growth was going from the one store to the two. The second store, that was really hard.

LUIS: Yes it was.

HATTIE: As you added three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10, did you find that you've got systems that made the additional stores easier, or does it get harder with each one?

LUIS: It's a changing process. And, like, one year, you're doing one job, then the next year, as you get more stores, you're doing a different job. So you have to change what you do with the growth that you have.

HATTIE: So have you done everything in this store? Have you done all the functions?

LUIS: You work in a family business, you start from sweeping floors to driving a forklift to driving trucks to--you pretty much have to do everything.

HATTIE: You're a pharmacist yourself. So you can even make the medicine.

LUIS: This is what we did back in pharmacy school back in the '70s. We hardly do this anymore. It's a very odd.

HATTIE: Once in several years.

LUIS: Once in a blue moon, you get a prescription from the doctor where he feels that what is out on the market is not probably adequate.

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