Russ: Coming to you today at the Lemonade Day Entrepreneurial Excellence Awards and I’m very pleased to have with me the first youth recipient of the Lemonade Day Houston Entrepreneurial Excellence Award Yash Semlani. Yash welcome to The BusinessMaker Show, how are you doing today?
Russ: How do you feel good about winning this award?
Yash: Uh huh.
Russ: Well tell me how you won it.
Yash: I thought about a goal and then I thought of ways to reach the goal. And when I figured those ways I saw ones that were reasonable that I could actually do and then I tried them out. And then I made them harder and I think that’s the strategy I used.
Russ: Sounds fantastic. So I understand the TIE organization, that organization where Ashok Rao is the global leader, I understand they helped you a little bit?
Yash: Uh huh.
Russ: What kind of things did they do that helped you? Did they give you some ideas?
Yash: Well when I went to one of the shows – I think it was a show, Dad took me there – I got lots of good ideas for my nomination; some about customer services, others about visions that you can make and that was one of the ways that they helped me.
Russ: That sounds really good. So was this the first year you did a lemonade stand?
Yash: No, this was the second year I did my lemonade stand.
Russ: Okay, how did you do last year?
Yash: Last year we did okay but we didn’t go like the extra mile.
Russ: Okay, and this year you went the extra mile?
Russ: And that might be why you won this big award here?
Russ: Okay. Well tell me some of the ideas that you implemented that worked well for you.
Yash: We used vouchers, like preselling, and when we presell we don’t have to just do if people come to the lemonade stand. We get the money upfront and if they come or not it’s their choice.
Russ: So you actually sold vouchers ahead of Lemonade Day for people to bring you if they wanted to actually get the lemonade.
Yash: Uh huh.
Russ: And did a lot of them bring their vouchers?
Yash: Not lots but like an average amount.
Russ: An average amount of them did, okay. So do you work real hard on making lemonade too or do you have somebody else do that?
Yash: The lemonade my dad made the infusions and he made the lemonade for me so I think I’m going to pay him back.
Russ: Wow. So you’ll take some of your profits and pay him?
Yash: Uh huh, yeah.
Russ: Well I heard several things about what you wanted to do too and you actually wanted to give some of your money to a good cause, is that right?
Yash: Yes. I was going to give half of the profits that I made to Texas Children’s Hospital Help Kids be Kids program.
Russ: Wow. That probably made you feel pretty good to give them a lot of money.
Yash: It made me feel very good.
Russ: Okay. Well I read a little bit about you too and you went into this with a goal which was a pretty high amount of money. What was the goal again?
Yash: So my first goal was $1 million but my parents said it was way too much so I reduced it to $1,000.00.
Russ: And did you make that goal?
Yash: We made that goal and when my friend Ananya joined we raised it to $3,000.00.
Russ: Whoa. And did you make that goal?
Yash: Yes, I think we beat it.
Russ: Congratulations, wow. So I assume you’re probably going to do Lemonade Day next year again too, right?
Russ: Okay. Have you already had some new ideas for next year?
Yash: They’re coming slowly and steady.
Russ: Okay. So what do you think you’re going to do when you get older? Are you going to be a business guy?
Yash: Yes. I think I want to do like marketing.
Russ: Marketing, whoa. What do you like about marketing?
Yash: That you can advertise sort of and you can do something of everything maybe, like a little in that field of everything.
Russ: Neat. Well you’re probably pretty good at sales too if you were able to go out and sell and do these presales of vouchers. Did most everybody that you present the voucher to end up buying one?
Yash: Most everybody. I think one, maybe two people didn’t, but that was pretty much it.
Russ: Wow. And how much did a voucher cost?
Yash: One voucher cost $25.00 and two vouchers cost $50.00, but I thought there was enough value to one voucher and two vouchers because we had tickets and one vouchers equals to six tickets, so if you had two vouchers you would have twelve tickets. And you would need tickets to go on the waterslide, get snow cones and also get lemonade and food.
Russ: Okay, where was the waterslide?
Yash: The waterslide was near the tennis court.
Russ: Okay, and is that close to where your lemonade stand was?
Yash: The lemonade stand was in the front of the tennis court to the side.
Russ: Okay. Wow, it sounds like you really thought this through?
Russ: Okay. Well Yash, thank you very much for sharing your story with me and congratulations.
Yash: Thank you.
Russ: You bet. And that wraps up my discussion with Yash Semani, the first youth recipient of the Lemonade Day Houston Entrepreneurial Excellence Award.
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