Five Sweet Secrets that Fuel Success

Steve Marks

Steve Marks

Throughout my career, there have been many ideas, circumstances, and turning points that put me on the path to success. It came down to five core concepts that have significantly shaped who I am as a businessman today.  


Reading David Allen’s book “Getting Things Done” 

This book changed my perspective on handling and arranging my daily activities. I learned so many ways to be more efficient and reduce the stress of information overload. Eventually, I was able to feel very satisfied with my daily accomplishments and be a better business person.  


Going All-in When It’s Time to Focus

During Main Street Gourmet’s evolution, we arrived at various crossroads and invariably had to shift direction. Most of those decisions involved coming to grips with our driving force. Ultimately, we made very deliberate decisions that required refocusing our efforts and resources. 


Two prime examples: Our decision to focus on selling muffin batter through a wholesale channel (vs. retail) and changing our sales approach to customization (vs. stock products). These focused decisions were pivotal and moved us to new frontiers.     


Surrounding Myself with Smart People

I have been very fortunate to have a great business partner in Harvey Nelson, and associations with many valuable employees who have been instrumental in our success. These relationships have undoubtedly been critical as we push through the many peaks and valleys of business. 


Within the first few years of starting our business, we organized a board of advisers that included people with expertise in areas where we were not well versed. As I look back on our accomplishments, there are so many that I could trace back to the advice of an associate or board member.    


Finding Balance with Meditation

Although it is not for everyone and takes a long time to master (if that can ever be done), meditation has given me so many benefits to get through the inescapable rollercoaster of running a business for so many years. For me, meditation has provided a refuge and calming influence that is irreplaceable in my life. 


Setting Reasonable Goals 

Perhaps this is business 101, but I am always amazed at how many favorable outcomes come from a simple goal. I am not just talking about yearly business and strategic plans, but personal goals that only I can understand, covet and decree. The continual review and reminder of these goals is an essential process for me.  


A few of these concepts came from looking at someone else’s life-changing ideas or a suggestion from a friend or colleague. Hopefully, one of these ideas will be incorporated into your organizational system and change your business life for the better.

This is the true story of two Akron, Ohio entrepreneurs who introduced a tasty treat that transformed into a major enterprise. ​