How To Be An Agile Tenacious Entrepreneur

A Conversation with Paul Abbott, Owner of Life of Riley

I had originally contacted Paul Abbott because of this online reservations tie into eCommerce but quickly found that this is the boring part! This guy is a perfect example of I did it my way, the hard way! He had a vision as to what he and his wife wanted to accomplish and chased it. He’s applied a great amount of agility and holds the tenacity of a terrier as those in the “Dog” industry might say. So that all said this show is not about eCommerce but more about small business, agility and tenacity and one man’s story of how he and his wife have applied all these towards growing a chain of 5-star luxury hotels and spas for dogs.

It’s interesting how the application of agility through constant tweaking of things in this service-oriented business can be applied to that of the eCommerce space. The bonus of applying this approach in eCommerce is that you can do a lot of this with tools and strategies like AB testing, and automated User Experience tools.

Take a listen and learn a little about rolling with the punches from a true Irishman running a successful business in America.

Show Quotes:
My luckiest break was getting the invitation to come and work in America.

I didn’t plan to work in the dog industry in America it was supposed to tile but you know how things go.

They say you shouldn’t try and re-invent the wheel but in a sense that exactly what we tried to do.

Humans are so emotionally attached to their dogs .

For better or for worse we didn’t visit a whole lot of competitors before we started.

We had a very good feel for what we thought would work well, so we just went with that and its worked out pretty well for us.

I don’t mean to dumb down what we do, but it’s not rocket science.

We didn’t get it right the first time, so we were tweaking, learning, evolving and adjusting, and we are still doing that to this day.

I learned the hard way that things go over budget with money and time almost everytime.

Once we got the doors open it was just a matter of tweaking and adjusting and going with things and giving people what they want.

We kept on going and it presented us with another opportunity which we capitalized on.

Tenacity, you’ve really got to have that approach to get anywhere.

For me, business is what gets me excited.

The tenacity side of it comes very much with an understanding that things don’t go to plan most of the time.

Whatever you start out planning to do, may not necessarily be what you end up doing.

Just get started! Getting started is the most difficult part.

There will always be a hundred and one people telling you why it won’t work.

Getting out there and starting and understanding that it might not go the way you think it’s going to go, but it will go somewhere.

Links from the Cast:
Website: Life of Riley Pet Hotel & Spa
Website: A dog club catered to pups and their busy parents

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About Branden Moskwa

He is the co-founder of calls him remarkably innovative. IBM says he is one of the industry's brightest minds, and SAP refers to him as one of the industry's top players. Branden has been quoted by and CDW and his company was recognized for being one of the top 5 most innovative companies by SBBC.