The lesson from two lemonade stands(Seth’s Blog)

The first stand is run by two kids. They use Countrytime lemonade, paper cups and a bridge table. It’s a decent lemonade stand, one in the long tradition of standard lemonade stands. It costs a dollar to buy a cup, which is a pretty good price, considering you get both the lemonade and the satisfaction of knowing you supported two kids.

The other stand is different. The lemonade is free, but there’s a big tip jar. When you pull up, the owner of the stand beams as only a proud eleven year old girl can beam. She takes her time and reaches into a pail filled with ice and lemons. She pulls out a lemon. Slices it. Then she squeezes it with a clever little hand juicer.

The whole time that’s she’s squeezing, she’s also talking to you, sharing her insights (and yes, her joy) about the power of lemonade to change your day. It’s a beautiful day and she’s in no real hurry. Lemonade doesn’t hurry, she says. It gets made the right way or not at all. Then she urges you to take a bit less sugar, because it tastes better that way.

While you’re talking, a dozen people who might have become customers drive on by because it appears to take too long. You don’t mind, though, because you’re engaged, almost entranced. A few people pull over and wait in line behind you.

Finally, once she’s done, you put $5 in the jar, because your free lemonade was worth at least twice that. Well, maybe the lemonade itself was worth $3, but you’d happily pay again for the transaction. It touched you. In fact, it changed you.

Which entrepreneur do you think has a brighter future?

[PS a few hours after I posted this, Elizabeth sent in this photo of her daughter doing exactly what I imagined. She said, “she made a fortune.”]

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About chinsky
Chinsky Cheung is a concept driven designer, known for her sophisticated print engineering and structural bodywear design. After obtaining a degree in Fashion and Textiles from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Cheung was appointed to join the Design Innovation Team at Ace Style Intimate Apparel, and designed for Victoria's Secret, Marks & Spencer and Calvin Klein. She moved to England in 2007 and completed her MA degree in Fashion Bodywear at DeMontfort University. Following collaborative projects with clothing design technology leaders, Bemis Associates and Framis Italia SPA, her thesis collection won the Roadley Award and Ace Style Funding Award. Upon graduation, she was offered an internship at Alexander McQueen. She developed innovative techiques for print pattern placement solutions with the company, and has been invited back on a freelance basis. She established her design and consultancy service in 2009. Since then her clients include Agent Provocateur, Alexander McQueen, Pringle of Scotland, Mother of Pearl, Temperley London and Topshop. Chinsky Cheung is devoted to explore the boundaries of design and technology. Driven by a philosophy to achieve the best for all individuals by breaking down the walls of the impossible, she welcomes partnerships and collaborations in, and across, various media. She is willing to practice with any parties with parallel ambitions and push those who are willing to adopt this vision in their field.

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