Rick Olsen lost his job as the Chief Operating Officer of a small high tech company. When he didn’t immediately land a job, he began to rethink what a paycheck really means. Because of that deep thinking, he made one big change.
Jackson Lee wrote in to tell his story. It's not just a story about learning to navigate a business in this economy: it's a story about learning to be a businessman. Jackson dropped out of college and became a bike messenger. He still has a day job as a bike mechanic. But in April, he took a gamble. He opened a vinyl record store in his hometown of Greensboro, N.C. The space also offers bike repairs in the back. Jackson talks with Dick about what he learned in his first few months of entrepreneurship.
In America, nursing homes are in high demand - there are only 17,000 slots for the 1.6 million seniors who can no longer live on their own. Cordelia Taylor is a nurse who was unhappy with how many elderly people were treated in sich facilities. So she quit her job, sold her house, and moved into her old, derelict neighborhood so she could afford to open her own nursing home, called "Family House." Also in this episode: a gift of a goat.
Michelle Graham is a Bank of America customer. Her family is living in a house in Las Vegas. Las Vegas has the highest rate of foreclosures in the country. But, even though a temporary mortgage modification has kept them afloat, and mediation gave them hope, now Bank of America wants to more than double their payments. Also: a young man, Derrick Bliss, who is taking on an old trade, blacksmithing.
One of the first people to be licensed to distribute medical marijuana in New Mexico is Len Goodman, a Santa Fe businessman. His newly-minted non-profit is called New MexiCann Natural Medicine. Also in this show: Lessons From The Tech Bubble
Jon Sandell took his first job bagging groceries as a teenager. He's been in the grocery business ever since. As a trainer of baggers and carryouts, Jon has won several state bagging competitions. But when he turned 50, he decided to try to go to nationals. He did and ended up being a subject in an upcoming film documentary, "Ready, Set, Bag." Jon tells Dick about the competition and his own personal victory.
Joseph Pfeffer closed the doors on his 66-year-old car dealership last month, after getting notice that the bank could no longer provide financing. After nearly 7 decades in the business, spanning wars and debilitating recessions, Joseph can't believe what he's facing: letting go of 50 employees and facing the emptiness of the day before him. Also in this episode, a story from our occasional series, "Tough Jobs".
Anthony Beaver is a service adviser at a car dealership in Napa, California. He's the one who delivers the news after the mechanic has checked the engine and found out what's wrong. Anthony talks about the time an irate boyfriend showed up to confront him - and he answers the difficult question of why there are so few young black men doing this kind of work. Also on the show: after a coma, a young woman opens her eyes to the kindness of others.