During Women’s History Week, the College of Business hosted a panel on “Women in Business.” The featured speakers were family entrepreneurs Jim and Caryn Hasslocher. Caryn Hasslocher is the owner of Fresh Horizons, a full service catering company and the daughter of Jim Hasslocher, known better as the founder of Jim’s Restaurants.
After leaving the armed services, Jim Hasslocher began his business selling watermelons from his bicycle stand in Brackenridge Park. Hasslocher told the students that being an entrepreneur is a rewarding experienc,e but one that requires perseverance. Hasslocher told the students they need to rely on all five senses: first, does the food taste good?; second, does the food and atmosphere look good?; third, does the restaurant and food smell good?; fourth, do you hear what you should hear?; and fifth, do you see what you should see? Hasslocher emphasized that it is the “sixth sense” that is most important, do your customers feel welcomed and appreciated? If so, you will have repeat customers and a successful venture.
Caryn Hasslocher enlightened the students and faculty on growing up in a family business and the education, challenges and rewards she faced. Those experiences led her down another avenue in the food service industry-catering. Unlike today, the catering business was not recognized as part of the restaurant industry, but with the knowledge and perseverance that she learned from her family, her company, Fresh Horizons, is one of the most sought after catering companies in San Antonio.
Her principles of success included being honest, treating others fairly, be flexible, learning the art of negotiation, continuing to learn and giving back to the community.
Both father and daughter agreed that one of the secrets to dealing with family members in business is to make sure that each person recognizes the primary goal–to have a successful business–no matter what role they play.
However, in the end, it all boils down to a phrase Caryn Hasslocher says her father coined many years ago, “Work smarter, not harder.”
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