Unstuck, A Great Book!

Over Memorial Day weekend during my staycation in New York I read Stephanie Stuckey’s wonderful book Unstuck, the story of how she came to buy and revive her family’s company Stuckeys, and the many road turns along the way.

It’s a candid and relatable business story resonating in no small part due to fond Stuckey memories. In my case, it was stopping at Stuckey’s in a Buick station wagon very much like the one on the book cover during family road trips between Florida and Atlanta. I remember most the roadside billboards, fresh orange juice, grilled cheese and pecan logs but also eyeing, alongside my brother, the plastic alligators and toilet bowl ashtrays.

That the Stuckey family’s brilliance was behind Dairy Queen being a stop along American highways was a neat revelation, though I was not surprised that Buffet’s company (Warren, not Jimmy) had bought the Stuckeys’ Dairy Queen franchise, after all it bought Sees chocolates. But most of all I love the reference to Miss Pine Tar Products and Miss Vidalia Onion, both of whom I once saw in a parade at the Claxton Rattlesnake Roundup (a town best known for fruitcake), during a 10,000 mile roadtrip through the south in what became (in retrospect my very naive) masters thesis on religious theme parks in the Southeastern US.

While a departure from my usual legalops and Hearst posts, from both I can relate to family companies and to reinventing operations, as I think many of us in the community can. It’s road trip season - if you give it a read let me know what you think!

Tomorrow morning, headed to iManage ConnectLive. Looking forward to speaking with iManage CEO Neil Araujo
, who also has many inspiring stories of building his successful company. If you're headed to the conference and run into Araujo, I encourage you to ask for a few!