RECONNECT BY KERRY PIPES Life’s Short, Grow Fast! G Grant Simon is doing exactly that with 3 brands in 6 states rant Simon is no stranger to these pages. We first profiled him in 2008 and then again in early 2014, when he had grown to 39 Great Clips salons, 11 T-Mobile stores, and 1 Smoothie King. He told us then and he told us again recently, “I love growth, and I don’t see our expansion slowing down anytime soon.” He means it, too. He currently operates 144 units across those three brands. Simon says his partnerships and in- frastructure have been key to his success. “Without the formation of our man- agement company, LSGF Management (Life’s Short Grow Fast) to provide the infrastructure and back office support for the brands, the goal of adding 45 more units in 2017 would be a dream and not a reality,” he says. Because of this rate of growth, he says, it became critical for him to begin working on the business rather than in it. units from 20 in 2013 to more than 100 by the end of 2017. “Lou provides over 25 years of retail operational experience, making him a perfect fit to lead the T- Mobile day-to-day operations while LSGF manages finance, HR, real estate, and other foundational aspects of the busi- ness,” says Simon. He’s also been busy adding Great Clips salons. “The truly exciting measurement NAME: Grant Simon TITLE: CEO COMPANY: LSGF Management NO. OF UNITS: 88 T-Mobile, 52 Great Clips, 4 Smoothie King AGE: 52 For T-Mobile, Simon joined forces with Lou Provost. He says the move al- lowed them to grow at a blistering pace, entering more markets and increasing FAMILY: Sophie 17, Rebecca 22 YEARS IN FRANCHISING: 23 YEARS IN CURRENT POSITION: 23 PERSONAL First job: Dishwasher. I was paid in cash because I was too young to legally work. I walked home after work at 1 a.m. I can’t believe my parents let me do that. Formative influences/events: My father al- ways worked for himself and had excellent business acumen. He taught me how to negotiate, manage, and take chances while controlling risk. My mother taught me about integrity, honesty, and tolerance. home, office, and gym are all within 5 miles of each other. Hardest lesson learned: When my growth started accelerating, I did not have the people in place to support it. Resources were stretched thin and I suffered operationally across the entire company. From that I have learned to invest in people and tech- nology well ahead of anticipated growth. Guilty pleasure: Buttercream frosted cake. Key accomplishments: Raising two great happy and successful kids. Work week: Between 50 and 80 hours. I always try to spend time with my family and friends. I love what I do, so it does not seem like work to me. Biggest current challenge: Finding the best technologies to help us continue to automate pro- cesses. Exercise/workout: I work out regularly and enjoy a variety of sports including running, cycling, tennis, and racquetball. Next big goal: Double the size of our company in the next 5 years. Best advice you ever got: Don’t live above your means. First turning point in your career: Forming LSGF Management, which has allowed us to acceler- ate our growth. What’s your passion in business? I have a constant drive to move the business forward and grow while helping others around me grow and succeed. Best business decision: Teaming up with operat- ing partners who have skill sets that balance mine 72 and who share my same drive, ambition, and values in business. MULTI-UNIT FRANCHISEE IS S UE III, 2017 How do you balance life and work? My Favorite books: Good to Great by Jim Collins; Capitalism and Freedom by Milton Friedman. Favorite movie: “Big.” What do most people not know about you? For 17 years, my business partner Greg and I have been going to the Taco Mac bar every Monday night to talk business, politics, and life. Pet peeve: Not doing something you tell me you are going to do. What did you want to be when you grew up? Out of college I found my dream job as a stock- broker. Then I found it was 100 percent commission, and at 22 I didn’t know anyone to sell stocks to. Last vacation: Southeast Asia with my daughters. Person I’d most like to have lunch with: My mother. And I do, once a month.