Create Bridges: Small Business - Big Rural Impact

Episode 24: More than just tea at the Thirsty Cowgirl

August 05, 2021 Create Bridges AR Season 1 Episode 24
Create Bridges: Small Business - Big Rural Impact
Episode 24: More than just tea at the Thirsty Cowgirl
Show Notes Transcript

Hazelle Whited, CREATE BRIDGES Coordinator for the Ozark Foothills, enjoyed a robust conversation with owner Wendy Hutchins of the Thirsty Cowgirl in Ash Flat. Following the opening of the sister store in Melbourne, Arkansas in September 2020, the Ash Flat store that opened May 2021 has proven to pace better than expected despite the uncertainty of the pandemic. What is certain is the vibrant atmosphere, easy going style, and commitment to customer service immediately felt when a client walks through the door.  Even though Wendy is constantly on the move, she takes time to share some behind the scenes of the Thirsty Cowgirl from product offerings to flavor creation, opening in the midst of COVID to the great staff that contributes to the stores' success. One can step in thinking they are just getting tea, but may come out with just so much more.

Thirsty Cowgirl
75D Remington Plaza
Ash Flat, AR 72513
870-29-7733
https://www.facebook.com/thirstycowgirlnutritionhub


KATZ nutrition HUB
701 E. Main Stree, Suite C
Melbourne, AR 72556
870-373-3952
https://www.facebook.com/katznutritionhub/

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Come join us, explore the impact of small business here in rural Arkansas.

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What challenges would you face? Who can help you meet those challenges? How do you get in touch with others like you?

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This is CREATE BRIDGES Arkansas, and we invite you to come cross these bridges with us.

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Thank you for joining us on another episode of Small Business, Big Real Impact.

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My name is Hazelle Whited over here at the Ozark foothills, and I am here at the Thirsty Cowgirl in Ash Flat with owner Wendy.

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And we're here to talk about all the fabulous things that she is doing here,

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as well as how she got through covid and opening the second store here in Ash Flat and then the great, amazing employees that she has.

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And so we're just going to dive right into it. Wendy, thank you so much for joining me this morning.

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Girl, you're very welcome. Yeah, great. So I know you've been in this Ash Flat location for probably about two, three months now. We opened May the 13th.

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And this is not your only location? No, ma'am. And you started in Melbourne.

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Started in Melbourne. Yes. Which I love because Melbourne is part of our region that we cover.

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So Izard, Fulton, and Sharp Counties. So I'm excited that you have developed this business plan within our Ozark foothills footprint.

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And it's an amazing story. I am going to tell you, it is so amazing. I have this little punch card that the girls always punch for me and it's almost full.

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So I hear way too often that's our goal every day, daily usage and we won't tell anybody.

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Well, no. And what's interesting is I come in here and there's some of the same people that come in.

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So you actually have a regular following already here in Ash Flat.

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I'm sure you have the same in Melbourne. Yes, yes, yes. And so really quickly, so this is a like a nutritional store.

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Yes, it was. Tell me a little bit about your store. Yes we do is teas and shakes.

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Everything is great for diabetics. If there's anything that has any sugar in it, we definitely let our diabetics know. It's stevia based.

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It's detox, low calorie. Great

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if you're on keto trying to find a, you know, an alternative not to go out and eat at a fast food restaurant or make a bad decision,

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come in and get a shake, we can hook you up about two hundred and fifteen to two hundred and fifty calories but only 13 or 14 net carbs.

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So in our teas are amazing. They are absolutely amazing. We work really, really hard on them.

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And there's so many flavors. I remember walking in the first time and I looked at the board.

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Yeah, Baskin Robbins and there are 31 flavors, has nothing to you guys. I know and we even made it simpler.

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We didn't even put all of our teas on the board. So then we have our menu that is there.

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And you could also look at how we usually do each customer and this is how we build our customer relationships is, that is overwhelming.

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I hate going into a place and you see so much that you're like, oh, I just want to order something and then you don't like it.

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So the first thing when like, if you were to come in your first day, hey, what is your favorite flavor?

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What's your favorite flavors? Well, I like this, but I don't like this.

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Well I like this, but so then we kind of base it on our customers and then you're like, oh, I love this.

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Well, then try this. That's one reason that we started our Tea of the Week.

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It is highly this is very it's discounted.

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But I kept thinking in the back of my head, how can I have all these ladies trust some of our favorite teas?

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And if they didn't like it, they're not out a lot.

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So that has been a hit. It works. So now you know that if you like that tea, there you go.

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Yeah, no. And it's great. And I will tell you, I think what has really impressed me about coming here is your staff,

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because I didn't meet you until maybe three or four visits in.

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And I remember, Erica, one of the things that she did is she asked me, what do you like?

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What flavors do you like? Is there fruits you don't like?

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And we just started going through and after, you know, it was not even a couple of minutes, she had a tea that was just absolutely amazing.

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So I really love that customer service. End of it. Absolutely. I was listening to me and then she put something together.

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Amazing. And so I really love that you have trained your staff to, you know,

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kind of challenge themselves into making something that they know that their clients walk away and say,

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you know what, I need to be back and try something else. Absolutely.

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And we're very fortunate because most of our girls are under twenty one, not saying that is fortunate.

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Not that we wouldn't hire anybody that is over twenty one.

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I'm just saying you don't really see that with younger people that are so outgoing because they're so attached to their phones to have that customer.

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Hey, what are you doing. Where are you going. Unless you're in the service industry. So we have been blessed in both stores with our employees.

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I have one over here working from Melbourne because Erika decided to be a good I did take a week off at the beach.

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Erica, if you listen to this, I hope it rains one day. But no, we have been very blessed with our girls.

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And but I also think it comes for me and Britney over at the other store.

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We come from a service industry. So we both worked in the F&B business.

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My grandmother had a restaurant. My mother worked at a restaurant. We've both been bartenders.

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So I think that that helps build the rapport with our clients.

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One thing we started at Melbourne and it was a huge success and we're going to start that over here and pay it forward board.

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Like if you come in and you've had a bad day and someone said, I want to pay a tea,

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I want to buy a team for the next person or this person, we pay it forward.

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And that has been wonderful over at Melbourne because not everybody comes in, is having a good day.

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So we love our pay it forward. We'll start that over here at Ash Flat when school.

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starts, I mean, and I love that idea of being able to get the community kind of involved in helping another community member,

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because you're right, I may come in one day and the girls are like, you are having an awful day.

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And guess what? Someone's already paid it forward. And to do this for you, don't worry about it.

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It is fine. And so what a way to cheer up your customers and that could come back for you.

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I know. I know. There's always a method to my madness, guys. Always a method to my madness.

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And I wanted to talk about that method because we spoke about them.

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I swear, it's almost like a million teas and combinations of flavors on the boards.

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And so you told me earlier that on Sundays is your like tasting day.

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So are you always creating new flavors? We tried to come out at least when we first came out.

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We knew, I mean, because this is a very competitive market. So when you go to any other nutrition shop, everybody has just about the same base.

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Everybody has like a Captain America or a bob and weave or bad and boujee or, you know, they'll have the same name.

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But I was like, wait a minute, we've got we've got to do something to set us apart. So we started our specialty teas.

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There's nobody that has our specialty teas. If anybody asks, we'll tell you what the flavor is, but we won't dove into everything else that's in it.

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And we work very hard on those. And that's where we went into the stores on Sundays and we sat down and we started with our bass.

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Some would be like, oh, this is good. Oh, no, this is horrible or no, this is great.

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Oh, this can make it better. And like I was telling you, when we start our weekly teas by the third day,

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it might not taste the same because I figured out a way, oh, this would taste better this way.

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And my girls like, hang on a second, you've changed this Wendy, but it tastes better.

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So we're always trying to create something that's better for you guys and that sets us apart from everybody else.

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Yes. Well, and that helps, you know, I mean, as an entrepreneur, you have to do something that's just a little bit different every time.

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And let's face it, I mean, the teas and in themselves, I mean, they're not the replacement.

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They're kind of like a meal replacement in my mind. So, I mean, you're talking ten to twelve dollars and some of these teas,

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which I think if someone was just expecting like a sonic drink, thinks that that's expensive.

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But when you kind of realize what's in it, your your collagen beauty boosters and your proteins, I mean, so probiotics, your vitamin C.

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Absolutely. Yes, absolutely. And so you have to have kind of like how do I differentiate this?

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Because you are investing into yourself by spending this kind of money for tea correctly.

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And so I love that, that you are constantly evolving that.

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And I'm guessing at some point you'll purge some of your old flavors. Maybe, I don't know are our specialty teas.

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I kind of guard them like. Well, people come in and say, hey, can I take a picture of a menu?

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And I'm like, oh yeah, but not this one. And they're like, wait a minute, I'm kind of like that mama bear.

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Hold on a second. Don't take a picture of that. But even on our board, it says specialty teas and it still doesn't give everything.

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Just let you know the base flavor so you'll know whether you like it or not.

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But no, we work really, really hard and we have a great team in Louisiana and those guys in Louisiana.

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They kick it up a notch. So I'll call down there. I say, All right, Lee, what are we doing this week?

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What's going on? She'll say, well, try this. And I'm like, Oh, no, you try this.

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When we came out with the orange dreamcicle, the honest truth, I was in Texas,

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wasn't even a shop that's affiliated with us with what lines that we do, went into the store.

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I tried this tea and I was like, I can make this tea. In five days,

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I mean, I was down there writing and five days I came back, I had that tea. I wanted forty four ounce cups found where I could get 44 ounce cups.

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There's not another shop in Arkansas that them had that to specialize.

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And thank God it's a little bit better. And I was like, I'm going to do this tea.

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That's what I do. I go to a store who I can do that tea. But it wasn't affiliated with what we do, but it was just a tea shop.

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And I called him down there, said, this is an amazing tea. It's amazing. I'm in love.

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Oh, it was so good. It's like an orange push pop. Oh, girl. Well, and so in your flavors are amazing.

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So but now I want to switch gears into talking about the business itself.

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So again, you had the shop in Melbourne since September.

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Since September, it will be a year this September. So you both of your stores are less than a year old.

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Yes. Oh, my goodness. Now, and really quickly, I want to jump into your background before we get into that.

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Yes. Because what I saw at the front door is the Preifert.

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You're actually a sorter. You do rodeos. Yes. Well, I sort, I team pin.

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I don't team pin, I sort, but they call it team pin or sorting. I play at it.

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I don't I'm not proficient by any means. I just go have fun. Yes.

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Well, and that's important because that speaks to why your personality you have a very I want to say loud, but that's not quite. Oh, I'm loud.

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Ask my four kids, ask my employees. I was pretty loud this morning.

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Yeah. No, but I love it. It is very vibrant and it's infectious and it's just like something that people want to be around.

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And so but I think a little bit that you have to be that way. I think if you're going to be on a horse and sorting cows.

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Oh, yes. So I love to have that background. And why the name now Thirsty Ccowgirl makes?

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Oh, well, we have farms and we have cows, and I'm pretty much of a spitfire.

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My husband, unfortunately, has to work off because we do have farms and we do have cattle and everybody that

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has cattle knows that you're not going to make a you might make a hard living at it,

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but we've got some we've got some goals that we're trying to do. So I come from a farm background and I love to ride.

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I got into riding hard about four years ago, and I've loved it ever since.

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I love it. I love to be on the horse. I love doing the farm. You will see me.

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I will be dressed for work and it never fails. I'll be dressed for work and I'll come to work.

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Have changed my tennis shoes or my shoes because they'll be stuff on my shoes

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that I don't need to bring it to the shop because something always happens. So I'm just from that background.

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I'm from, this weekend I sprayed. I was in the tractor, spraying and had a catastrophe with the calf.

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I mean, it's just that's just my background. I don't know how not to work hard.

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Yes. I mean, at two o'clock in the morning, I'm on my phone trying to figure out what I need to do.

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But I also think that comes from a military background too. My mom and dad were, bless their hearts.

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They they told me you had to work hard for what you wanted in life. And when I went into the military, that just kind of was one step over.

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And then when I got out of the military, I was like, thank heavens I went in because I needed a little bit more structure.

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So structure, farm work. And I think it just led into being successful at business.

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Yes. I mean, does that make sense? Absolutely. OK, and first, I want to say thank you so much for your service.

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We very much appreciate that. And I didn't know that about you. So appreciate you saying that.

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Yes. So not only is the military, but the farming background is so important.

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Those are skills that you have to have when you have your own business, because something's going to happen.

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Something's going to go wrong every day. And, you know, things are thrown at you and you have to be able to respond to that.

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And business owners that are not able to rise above adversity, they won't make it.

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It just they won't and so it's hard. And covid has been hard on everybody.

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Yes, well, let's talk about COVID, actually, because September was you're still in the midst of it.

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We jumped right in the middle of it. Girl, I told my husband, I said, I think I'm going to buy this business.

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And he was like, what? I was like, yeah, I think I can make it work.

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So we looked at the numbers and he goes, well, if anybody can do it, you can do it.

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Of course we had the restrictions, but in today's society, we do have our phones,

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we've got Venmo, we've got Facebook pay, we've got PayPal, we've got Apple Pay.

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So we were able to have our storefront and do contactless delivery and mask up and, you know, glove up and be able to start that.

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And I think we live in an area where sometimes people don't think things will affect us, but they do. This sense of being secure and not being secure.

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Does that make sense? Because nothing touches us on the outside world that it really does?

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Yes. But I think that they saw us being careful. So that brought us business, if that makes any sense.

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Yeah. So we really didn't maybe there wasn't covid the numbers would have been bigger.

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But I loved our numbers and I still love our numbers. Everybody asked me if this new wave is, you know, our numbers are down.

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July's usually kind of slow for everybody, but it's been it's a blessing.

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Our customers are a blessing. You guys do not understand that.

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I cannot. And when we came to Ash Flat, it was like I had a goal of what I wanted to make a day, blew it out of the water.

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I called my husband is like, you're not going to believe this. There's there was no one in this plaza in Remington Plaza.

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There was not enough. There was the church and the chiropractor's. That was it.

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And then the nail salon came in and I was like, oh, bonus. And then we had the Lemon Tree has always been there, but we had the lemon tree.

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And then we have Miss Caitlin, who's moved in next door. And I was like, God's blessing me a little bit here.

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So I need I need to be very thankful for what we've got. So the community has brought us in with open arms.

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Absolutely. And Remington Plaza, I mean, that is what was is interesting is that except for the lemon tree, there wasn't anything retail here.

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No. And all of a sudden you just had a slew of retail shops that came in that are women oriented.

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Yes. Let's face it, your business is going to get a little bit more towards and then to the men.

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Yes. So all of a sudden you have this customer base of people that are like flocking over here.

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Yes. And I think the nail salon has been doing fabulous as well. They've done it right.

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They've done great. And when the men do come in, they don't over the shoulder of the butterfly kisses,

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they're like they want like I need the Captain America, but I really want the butterfly kisses.

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But would you just say it's Captain America, please?

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Now, do you think some of the the growth and the excitement over what's here is because of the new shops,

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or do you think it has to do a little bit with industry moving in across the street, or is it just 

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growth in Ash Flat, I think is just growth in Ash Flat.

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I just can't believe how much is growing like you've got you've got the new coffee shop that's coming in down the road.

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You've got, you know, the new restaurants that are coming. I'm just like, whoa.

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And then you got Emerson. That's going to have how many employees? A whole bunch in there, right across the field for me.

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They can see my building. Just come on over and get your tea. Come on.

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Come on. They should, a little energy boost and now, I know, I'll even walk it across and feed the little geese as I go.

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Give them some bread over there and hook them up to. And so I can tell that you were excited.

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Ash Flat was an opportunity that you saw, you know, was a potential that you really needed to jump in.

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Absolutely. But I am wondering were you concerned about finding employees for the store?

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Yes, I knew I had Erica. She was over at the Melbourne store and she is fabulous, fabulous.

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And I was like I knew Erica was going to come over and help here. And Payton my daughter, who is.

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Oh, heavens, she's she's amazing, too.

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But I knew of all four of us, if me, Brittany, Payton and Erica could dig ourselves up between the stores, that we would be OK.

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And then Little Miss Kaitlin walks in Melbourne one day and she's like, she's bubbly.

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And I was like, hey, you need a job. And so poor Miss Kaitlin. She got a job.

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And then Bree walks in your local hometown girl.

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Over here it's Hofmann, It's Bree Hoffman. I don't want to hammer her name.

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She walked in once and got a tea. The second time she walked in I automatically offered her a job and she

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just looked at me like I had just fell over and she would just look at me like You don't know who I am.

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I said I can see her soul. She just you can't be in a bad mood

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when Bree's in the room. If you're in a bad mood and she's in the room, something's wrong with you.

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Yes. And she knows every one of y'all over here.

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There's not a person that walks in that Bree doesn't know in my shop. I absolutely hate that she's going to college.

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And I have, Come see Bree. She's only here till the tenth, I begged her not to go to school.

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Please come to work for me forever. But no, like I said, that's that's how we're blessed.

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Yes. Yes. And, you know, it's encouraging to me. So Bree and my son, actually, they went to prom together.

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You told me and you came in and I was like, so. And it's exciting to see those kids.

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You know, they're moving. They're going to college. But guess what? They're working for us over the summer.

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And I think that's an important part of our plans as business owners is to find those kids are getting ready.

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Juniors and seniors work them over the summer. They're going back to school then they come back and see you over the summer, because guess what?

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You still, for the college kids, you may have two or three more summer. So. Absolutely. And that's for us here is one of our busier times.

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I mean, I'm not suggesting that you're not going to be busy when they go back to school.

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The fall winter, certainly. But it is nice to have them here. And you get to help them groom their skills as good workers down the road.

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Yes. Later on, I'm sure Bree will remember her experience here and say she was awesome.

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Hope so. Maybe not today, guys. Today is one of those days. It was it was definitely a Monday to day.

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No. And it's the same. We're losing Haley over at Milburn's.

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She's going to go to school, too, and she's one of our strong employees. Payton will stay with us, but we call them our bigs and our littles.

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And so our older girls could be a year older, but we still call them our bigs.

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So our littles are wonderful too. Our littles can count money back.

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Yeah. That they didn't learn it in school. They can put a face to face.

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I mean when they they're not and I'm not saying about being on your phone is a bad thing.

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I'm just saying that they're having to make conversations with adults when they come in and say how are you doing?

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And I think it's building skills for them. So when they do have to go out in the job market, they could be like, look,

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we just dealt with thirty women between six and seven o'clock that want their teas before they go to school or they go to work and they want it now.

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Yes. And it's not a drive through. So they have to come in the store. And so they're getting that like I am right in the face.

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Here it is. Ready, set, go.

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I can honestly say in almost a year we've maybe had five customers that has not been happy, you know, something was wrong or we couldn't make right.

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I had nothing to do with that or neither did Britney. It comes from our girls because we float stores.

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So when I'm out there, they're here.

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When I'm here, I mean, it's just like so if they call me, there's a problem nine times out of ten, they can handle it.

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Yes. And we're very fortunate because Mountain View has opened. We've got a store underneath this one when

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Mountain View opens. Oh, my goodness. Calico Rock should be open in September.

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Salem should be open before school starts and Mammoth Spring should be open before school starts.

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Oh, my gosh. So my job I feel with doing this business is to help other people create this business so they can help support their families.

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So this organization has helped me do that. And I'm praying that I can get my husband home off the road and he can be home and deal with the cows.

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So you got to do battle. I have to do it all the time. Yes. I just want to be that kind of girl goes out on the ranger.

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Oh, yeah. Here's a pretty little cow. Oh dang. I got to pull the calf again today.

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Well, I am really excited about your business and we're really excited to see all the growth in this area.

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Absolutely. And again, I really am impressed with your girls and I'm more impressed because they are the one they're seasonal ones.

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And there's always a complaint about seasonal employees. You know, you you just kind of get a body and your girls are not bodies.

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No, they are. You know, they're definitely customer service oriented.

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They care about their clients and they really try hard to please.

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And I love that you give them an opportunity to kind of work it through themselves.

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So that ability to problem solve these are skills that they have to have.

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These are life lessons. These ARE life lesson. Yes. Yes. And so

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I really feel it's a responsibility as business owners to give that to to those to the people in the workforce.

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And the younger the better. Oh, absolutely. It makes us more successful.

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And we can depend on employees because you can't be everywhere at once. Oh, absolutely.

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Well, now, like right now, I was thinking I really need to go get that sprayer filled up and go spray those two fields.

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I didn't get done yesterday. Like, seriously, I'm going I really need to go get on the tractor today.

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Is the sun going to stay out? Is it going to rain. Oh yeah. Oh, we got 14000 cups coming in and lids.

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Yeah.

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We got to get that, always. I have to tell you, I'm sure Wendy's head as she's trying to focus and talk here, her mind's already on other parts of the business.

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Oh absolutely. Which I do appreciate. You worked really hard and the store is beautiful.

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Thanks for painting in here. Yes. I got to finish. This is what I get in the mood to paint is like move.

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I won't let the girls do the trim work. So yeah, that's been what I've got to get it done.

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I just told him, I just told Caitlin I'm going to bring the ladder from the farm up here tomorrow and I'm going to finish painting.

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You just mentioned something that we talked about earlier because you talked about giving back to the community.

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Absolutely. You were telling me about a program that you're going to be starting. In fact, that is already in existence in Melbourne.

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Oh, yes. Pay It Forward program. We love this because you get the community involved.

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Absolutely. In this process. Would you tell me again a little bit about. Yes.

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So I'm just going to do for instance, I had a lady that walked in the store one day and she said,

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I want to buy fifteen teas of the day of the week and I want to pay for it. So we write it on a board.

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We've got fifteen teas and or someone will come in.

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I want to give Sally a tea, Mary Beth a tea and then they walk in to get their tea.

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It could be a horrible morning. You're late, you're dealing with your kids,

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you know you've got one that doesn't have their shoes or their backpack and you

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walk in and your tea's paid for free, Or your shakes paid for free our pay it forward.

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And we're going to start that over here. When school starts, we'll have a board up.

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You walk in, you want to pay it for somebody else. It's on a board.

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We will say hey got it. The girls know it and it's marked off. Can be your name or could just be anonymous.

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And I love the idea of so so the girls are seeing someone walk in the door and is just having a horrible day.

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Absolutely. And so would they just say this tea, your tea is paid for, is paid for.

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And we had one this morning. I was over because I get to Melbourne before I come over here and a young lady walked in and she's like,

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and wanted her tea. And Britney looked at her, said, your tea is paid for. She goes

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who paid for my tea? We're like, we cannot tell you that, but it's paid for. Will you tell them thank you.

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I mean, that makes everybody feel good. Yes, absolutely. And there's days we will be in a store and just look at you and go

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Oh, girl, this one's on me. Or if I feel if I don't make something right.

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Oh no. You take that. You take it. Absolutely. I mean, that's just customer service.

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Yes. Well, customer service. And that this program allows, again, other people to just say, look, I've been blessed today.

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I have to take care of somebody else. Absolutely. And and just what a motto that is to walk in.

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And you feel that when you walk into your store, it it's just this. Yeah. I can't tell you enough about coming in to the thirsty cowgirl.

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And is it named that also in Melbourne. Um no. 
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It's Katz, KatzHub. It's Bearcats, but we shortened down to KatzHub to make it a little more edgy.

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It changed our picture out a little bit. Our little cat's like same colors that are Thirsty Cowgirl's. 

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Pretty. Yeah, it's pretty wild. We love it. We're kind of spicy girls.

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We kind of get. Oh yeah. There days you come in and we cannot we try to tone it down.

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Sometimes I'm sure our neighbors are like, oh heavens to Betsy. Could these girls calm down a little bit because we get a little loud in here too.

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Sometimes we have some clients that come in and I really don't know if they come in for the tea or they just come in for the show.

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I mean, seriously, because there's something every day I'm telling you I need my own reality show.

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Well, I'm glad on those days you have your girls to do. Oh, heavens to Betsy.

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Yes. Yes. I mean, just like I leave we leave the 12th, 13th and 14th to go ride in Texas.

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And I never I don't worry about the stores. I do not. Yeah. So I'm really bucking for my own reality show.

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So you could be in it that would be fabulous. I know they like all these girls, are crazy.

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I was going to say, I don't know if they could handle us on TV. I'd get some beeps. There would be some beeps. Like you should be very happy.

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There's no beeps having to happen right now. Yeah, there be a couple of beeps. Well, Wendy,

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is there anything that you would like to share with other business owners specifically on maybe trying to find employees for their businesses?

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Is there like a magic dust formula,

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or is it just like I can feel it in my soul when I see them walk through the door and I'm not going to let anyone else take them.

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Absolutely. I always go with my gut and then I treat my girls the way that I want to be treated.

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And it's like I said this morning, this is one today was one of those days. And I said, you know, not mad.

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I'm a little aggravated, but I'm not mad.

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So let's just so I try to do it because I've been on the other end where I've had a boss that you just walk in and you're on eggshells.

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You're just like, oh, I don't want to do this. So I talk to my girls the way that I would like to be talked to from somebody else.

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You just have to really know what you're gearing towards. I know. I know.

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I mean, it's your personality. Well, and you just said something right now and you said, you know what your goals are.

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And I know that your staff knows what those goals are. Yes.

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So there's no misunderstanding that you are all going towards the same goals.

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And that's what makes it tough, I think, is when a business owner has a set of goals and the employees don't understand what those goals are.

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And so there's that mismatch and miscommunication. Absolutely. Sure. We're not going towards the same thing.

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But you I, I. Firmly believe it, because I know I can see it.

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They speak the same way you do, maybe just not as robustly as you.

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Yes, but they do have the same mission that you do. And I always make sure that I show them appreciation always. I always want to make sure

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that I'm showing them how much because I couldn't do this business if it wasn't for them.

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I mean, I would be here 13 hours a day.

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So I have to I have to make sure I let them know how much that they're appreciated because I do appreciate them and they're like my kids.

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Yeah. I mean, I come in do this weekend. I know I'd better not have done this weekend, you know, kind of 

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because we're all we all know each other because I have my son who's now 16 or just turned 17.

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So I kind of know what everybody kind of does. I'm like, OK, let's talk what's going on?

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And sometimes they'll tell me, oh, Miss Wendy let me tell you what happened this weekend. I'm like, oh, do I really want to know?

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But no, they're good kids. Well fabulous.

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Well, I think if I absolutely love it, I love the model I love again, it's just walking in here in between the staff and you.

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It is just a pleasure to walk into the store, I think, let alone the teas.

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The teas are almost secondary. You I'm telling you we're a bartender with no alcohol.

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I love that. Yeah. And just wait, we've got a couple of things up our sleeves for back to school for everybody to make a grab and go kind of good.

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Get better choices for everybody. We're working pretty hard on those. So yeah, I got a little surprise up our up our sleeves in both stores.

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I love it. Always coming up with something inventive, being, you know, innovative.

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And if you ever need a tester call me up, just call you. It's not about doing that on Sundays.

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We really have Sundays after church, everybody coming in and doing a little taste test.

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Some stores do. They have little tasters. But yeah, we might do that.

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Hit me up. I think we're going to do a grand opening. I think we're going to a big grand opening.

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And we do that will have some stuff out. Excellent. So if you're ever in Ash Flat, you need to come see the really great staff at the Thirsty Cowgirl.

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And if Wendy's here, you won't you'll absolutely know she's here. You'll hear me.

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You'll hear me, So well thank you again. Very welcome. And I appreciate all of you listeners on this next episode of Small Business Big Rural Impact.

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I love editing. There you go, girl.

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I need a new tea. We will get you six teas to go. Catch you next time.

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Thank you. Bye bye.

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For more information about this or any CREATE BRIDGES podcast or more about CREATE BRIDGES in Arkansas, visit 

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uaex.uada.edu/createbridges. The Create Bridges Small Business Big Rural Impact podcast is made possible by

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a Wal-Mart grant to the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture,

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Cooperative Extension, Community Professional and Economic Development Unit and White River Now Productions.