Nearly 14 months ago and after years of R&D, Sloan + Parker opened our doors to our amazing community and fellow wine and beer lovers. It was something I had dreamed of doing but never really believed I would do.
Being super Type-A, neurotic about having all the facts, and creating contingency plans for every possible hiccup, I always ended up in analysis paralysis. Constantly researching and studying, but rarely doing. I’d blame us moving, or not having the start-up funds, or not knowing the industry well enough, or one of a million other things, as the reason why I hadn’t pulled the trigger. I refused to admit that they were just excuses and my husband was tired of hearing them – which led to many louder than normal discussions between us.
I was scared. Scared to fail. Scared to lose our life savings. Scared to look friends and family in the eye if it didn’t work. Scared to go back to corporate life. Scared that I wouldn’t be the best. Scared that all my research was wrong. Scared. Scared. Scared. Researching and studying was my way to avoid knowing what would happen if I was brave enough to suck at something new.
At the same time, I would tell my kids, especially my young daughter, that they could do anything, be anything they wanted. That they were their only limitation.
One day I realized, after one of those louder than normal discussions, that my husband was right (and I was a bit of a hypocrite). But I wasn’t going to admit it – obvi. So, I found a realtor and scouted locations just to prove him wrong. Guess what? Every single one had a flaw. Shocking! And the excuses continued to mount. Also, shocking.
Nine (9) months later, ironic?, I had signed a lease and was starting the build-out. What? Three (3) months later our doors opened and we’ve be up, running, learning, and tweaking ever since. No way!
My Type-A still freaks out all the time [it’s been too slow, there’s not enough new people, where are the regulars, what can we do better, where are we failing, etc etc etc] but we’re still here. We’re not perfect. We’re still learning. We could still fail. And I am often scared that we will. But I was brave enough to risk sucking. And sometimes I do. Sometimes I make the wrong decision or pick the wrong option.
But, I would do it again. Without hesitation. I have the most amazing family-team at S+P. We love what we do and are passionate about making S+P fantastic. We strive every day to do better, to be better. And fear of failure just might be a motivating factor – because I am still human.
We are a small team with big dreams. Thank you to our followers, guests, dinner attendees, moral supporters, cheerleaders, friends, family, beer drinkers, wine lovers, distributors, wineries, and advisers who have helped us get to this point.
I can’t tell you what the future will hold, where the next S+P will be, or what it will look like. What I can tell you is that it will only get better. How could it not? With all y’all here supporting us, cheering us on, and letting us know when we fail. For that, we say THANK YOU!
From our Sloan + Parker family: we hope you had a magical end to your 2019 and a safe beginning to your 2020. We cannot wait to celebrate this next year with you!