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"What Are You Doing in My Closet?"

Lorie Gardner
Mike Switzer/SC Public Radio

  Our next guest’s production company has won more regional and national Addy awards than any other South Carolina company. And she says her success comes from helping companies ask themselves "Why do our customers want us?" As an example, she says just open your closet, reach in and pull something out and ask yourself, "Why is this in here? Does it work for me? Is it building my personal brand, or is it getting in the way?" And she says you can do this with your whole life. Mike Switzer interviews Lorie Gardner, president and founding partner of Mad Monkey in Columbia, SC.

After almost 20 years, Mike Switzer retired from Wells Fargo Securities in 2001 as Senior Vice President/Investment Officer and Certified Portfolio Manager. In 1999, he and his wife, Maggie, purchased and operated for eight years the Baskin Robbins ice cream store on Forest Drive in Columbia. They grew the store from a bottom-tier operation in the Baskin Robbins franchise system to one in the top 5% nationwide within three years, tripling sales along the way. While operating the ice cream store, Mike and Maggie received patents for a portable ice cream sink and fold-down sneezeguard they invented and in 2002 started Magnolia Carts, an ice cream cart manufacturing company, which they sold in 2013.