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The Entrepreneurial Spirit: An Interview with Chop Barbershop Owner Danny Rainey

Barber testing the sharpness of a blade

The idea of starting your own business, while certainly exciting, is absolutely not without its share of intimidation. It is because of this intimidation and apprehension that, according to The Atlantic, millennials are on track to be the least entrepreneurial generation in recent history. But that does not need to stop you!

Of course, the first major obstacle in starting your own business is, well, actually getting it started. How do you take that brilliant idea and turn it into a profitable venture?

I interviewed my friend and extremely successful entrepreneur, Danny Rainey, to try to get the answer to that simple yet important question. Rainy is one of the owners of the barbershop chain: Chop Barbershop. Their quality is superb and the staff treats you like family.

When did you decide you wanted to start a business?

“I decided to start my business soon after barber school. I had been an electrician for most of my career and knew I wanted to be in charge of my new schedule.”

What were your biggest challenges when starting this business?

“I think my biggest challenge was the time it took to build our first shop. I was still working full time at another shop to pay the bills. My partner and I put in many long nights doing our build out.”

How has technology helped you/ hurt you in this business?

“Technology has been a huge help in our scheduling process. It has really helped bring us closer to our customers. The only time I can think of that was challenging was the one time the internet was down. That was complete chaos.”

What traits do you look for in employees?

“I look for people who are willing to work hard and have good speed, and put out good product. They cannot be a perfectionist and [need to] know when they have finished. So it’s a real fine line. Small issues we try and work with them on education.”

What do you think has been a major factoring in the success of your business?

“I think we have been as successful as we are because we have a great team. I cannot take all the credit by any means. From my partners’ creativity to my wife’s support and hard work, we all have parts to play and are lucky that we can count on each other to play on each other’s talents.”

Do you have any plans for the future of the business?

“I think we are looking to continue to grow as far as we can in Tallahassee and reach out to other parts of the southeast.”

What is your favorite haircut to give someone?

“I think my favorite haircut to give would be the flat top razor fade.”

What advice can you give to students to embrace an entrepreneurial attitude?

“The best advice I could give new business owners would be to work hard and do the research necessary to suit the area you are expecting to fill.”


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