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Last Update: Saturday September 18, 2021

Key Idea: Do It Different

To rise above the crowd, start by being unhappy with the status quo, and ask "How can I do it better?"

Key Question:


Don't even think of being a "me too" business.

Q:  What did Andy see that others didn't see in the Boston tourism scene?

A:  He saw the view of the city from the Charles River and he was convinced that every tourist would want to experience that view.

Starting a business by launching a new product is nearly impossible. You have to love the idea and enjoy the pain of doing something no one has ever done before. You can look for paths to follow or mentors to guide you, but so often you will find yourself very alone.

Some inventors actually think a big company will give them millions for an idea they sketch on a tablet. Many many big companies buyout small companies but only after the product is made and proven in the marketplace by happy customers. Most inventors and entrepreneurs don't anticipate the amount of time and up front cash it takes to come up with a product.

Think about it

What about the current situation in which you find yourself needs improvement? What really bothers you? What irritates you enough that you are willing to spend weeks, hours, months or years to change?  What could you create that would fill a need?

Clip from: Boston Duck Tours: The Money is Out There

Boston: Meet Andy Wilson, founder of Boston Duck Tours. A Massachusetts Small Business Person of the Year, he turned three passions into a single business – his love of Boston, his respect for early American history, and the Charles River.

First, he wants us all to know the history of this country's early struggles for religious toleration, freedom, equality, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Learn how such passion moved him to quit his job and raise over $1M to launch this dream -- an 80-minute, historically-narrated tour from an authentic World War II amphibious landing craft.

Take the tour now as we wander the narrow streets of Boston and splash down onto the Charles River for the grande tour Boston.

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Boston Duck Tours

Cindy Brown, CEO (Andy Wilson, founder)

3 Copely Place
Suite 310
Boston, MA 02116

Visit our web site:

Office: 6172673825

Business Classification:
Entertainment / education

Year Founded: 1994

Do It Different

HATTIE: Hi. I'm Hattie Bryant. This program is for anyone who owns a business or who thinks someday they might want to. From Los Angeles to Boston and from Tampa to Seattle, small-business owners tell you exactly how they do what they do.

This week, you'll see how an entrepreneur created a tourist attraction in one of the country's oldest and most-visited cities. You'll also hear from a viewer and get advice on enlarging your customer base.

People are always looking for a magic formula. We all search and struggle to find our way. The journey is easier if we have advice from those who have gone before us, so every week, we bring you into a small-business Master Class. This is an opportunity, not just a tip or two, to learn from a master. From Boston, here's the young but now business-wise Andy Wilson.

HATTIE: This is Boston, the birthplace of America. Visitors, both tourists and convention-goers, pour into the city to experience the history, the architecture, the culture, the schools, the rich texture of a place that represents freedom, independence, democracy. Our Boston-born and bred executive producer tells us that Boston has a longstanding identity with certain amphibious creatures. The swan boats have been part of the public garden since the 1800s, and every child who grows up in Boston reads, "Make Way For Ducklings." The stars of the book also reside here in the gardens.

Unidentified Group: (In unison) Quack, quack, quack, quack.

HATTIE: (Voiceover) Now there's a new duck in town, another amphibious wonder brought to the people of Boston by this imaginative entrepreneur.

Unidentified Woman #1: Are you guys ready?

Unidentified Woman #2: We're ready.

HATTIE: (Voiceover) Boston Duck Tours is an 80-minute sightseeing tour of the city. The ducks are World War II landing craft originally used to transport supplies from ship to shore. There are 12 ducks with colorful names, like Beantown Betty, and colorful characters, like our tour guide, to take us on a historical journey.

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