My oldest daughter asked to come to work with me this morning.  She’s been coming to Paige’s since before she could walk…and she’s been running around the store ever since she could walk!  Up until today, her visits have been purely for fun – pop bubble-wrap in the warehouse, run through the plastic garage doors, have me push her around on a cart, ask Tom for M&M’s in the shop, bounce balls with members of the sales staff, etc.  This morning I offered her the chance to help me with a project that has been on the back burner and she readily volunteered.  I gave her instructions and about ten minutes of training on the one task in our computer system she’d need to execute.  It took her about 90 minutes to get through the project and it was a huge help to me.

All of this got me thinking about how our business – and other businesses – get passed down from one generation to the next.  Paige’s Music has been Indiana owned and operated since 1871…we’re coming up on 150 years!  How do you pass down the DNA of a business over multiple generations?  Many books and Harvard Business School case studies exist that analyze all the various answers to that question.  In the case of Paige’s, the fundamental answer revolves around the concept of serving.  As I worked with my daughter this morning, I emphasized how the simple project she completed tied into helping our customers.  When we keep our focus on service, even seemingly small things find their importance and context.

Who knows if one day my daughter (or both daughters!) will work with me here at Paige’s.  If they do, they will understand how everything they do here impacts our customers.  They will also have to deal with the fact that they work in the same building as their biggest fan.