A personal note (aren't they all personal?)

Small Business Planning: Surprise! Not always fun & games It hurt, you know...it felt bad missing our first weekly posted article in more than a year. I'm not totally sure just how many people actually read my writing, let alone enjoy it and/or read it on a regular basis, but in our seemingly endless preparation for launching GrassLands Brewing Company sometime in the next six months, this has been one of our primary vehicles for interactivity - both with you, our dear readers, and with the public at large; even if it's usually just us talking to the intertoobz.

Knowing that as we inch closer toward our goal of launching, we'll no doubt be extremely busy and often times, the weekly article will have to serve as nothing more than an update as to what we did in the past week. In becoming a fan of Monday Night Brewery's approach toward social networking prior to their own launch, that certainly became evident the closer they came to launching...and even post-launch. Some sacrifices have to be made. One like last week's wasn't enjoyable in the slightest, even though its absence was a reflection of our efforts to hit a common goal.

Here's a fun fact: I was going to write an article this week about our approach toward quality and how that model will be realized in the product we ultimately push out. One of our buddies & awesome GrassHoppers (Brian L. - his alter ego: BeerApostle) recently purchased a small experimental batch of an English Barleywine from a Texas brewery. Due to a wild yeast infection that occurred sometime during the bottling phase (it was bottled with yeast for re-fermentation within the bottle - a conditioning practice heavily utilized by Belgian Trappist breweries), Brian ultimately had to pour it out. That struck a chord with us - but we'll chat about that next week, perhaps. It's nice to convey our approach for high quality prior to launching, but I felt a personal note about our absence last week took a higher priority.

We've always valued sincerity. If there's a common attribute among myself, VP Scott and GM Saralyn, it's that we all want to be taken seriously, even though at times we're anything but. More than anything, we want to communicate how much we mean what we say and how that will reflect in our business operations. We want to have fun, but we also want to exhibit sincerity in our work. That's why when we screw up, we'll admit it and do it better next time. When we're excited, you'll know about it. When we communicate goals & objectives - they're for real and we're gonna do everything in our power to make them realized. You can trust that aspect of our business personality.

More than anything, this past two weeks showed me how important this initiative has become to both myself and my better half (GM Saralyn) - important that it's a) done right and b) done sincerely. I think that's an extremely valuable attribute to any business approach; especially one where we'll, in large part, be depending on you the consumer. We can make the best beer in the world, but if you don't trust us, if we don't come across as sincere - then it'll all be a wasted effort.

Okay, I'll get off my soapbox for now. I just wanted to get that off our collective chest. We're really getting close to making this thing real - and it can be very, very scary at times as this is our first go at our own business - but (and this is gonna sound soooooo cliche and sappy) - you awesome people, my dear readers, make it worth the effort...worth the long hours that get put in day in & day out. I mean that.

Anyways, we're excited about a number of initiatives going forward. The next 3 months are gonna be bonkers, but fun at the same time! When aren't bonkers fun? So if you're not getting our weekly newsletter, definitely sign up. If you're not connected with our Facebook & Twitter feeds - definitely do that. Interactivity has always been one of our top priorities...and that won't change going forward!

Have an extremely wonderful (& long) weekend, my dear readers, because you most definitely deserve it!

Prost!