Grow your industry, grow your business

Mike Crandall, Sandler Custom Growth Solutions

Miles Hall, owner of H & H Shooting Sports sat down with me for a Q&A about how he and his wife, Jayne, built a highly successful business and reinvigorated an industry that was becoming stagnant. This is part two of our two part session.

Q: Aside from listening to your Guests, what steps have you taken that attribute to your success?

We decided early on that in order for us to reach the audience we wanted to reach, we needed to become champions of shooting sports.  We know that there are people out there who would be big fans of shooting if they knew a little more about it.

So our goal from day one has been to guide people to the sport and help promote the industry as a whole. It has always been our focus to grow the knowledge and the involvement in the sport of shooting.

Q: Can you give me an example of how you have been involved with promoting the industry?

There are other business owners who have expressed desire to do what we do and we’ve always offered to helped them.  We have worked with hundreds of the ranges that have popped up around the country to share our knowledge and the lessons we have learned. Our goal is to steer them towards success – even though they’re technically our competitors.

To us, it’s just as important to get people involved in the sport as it is to make them our Guests. If they become interested and end up visiting someone else’s range, that’s fine. We feel that if they become involved in the sport, it is still a win. Growing the industry helps everyone, if you think about it.

It’s not just a business thing though.  We genuinely care about improving the lives of our guests, whether it’s helping them unwind, become more skilled, or feel safer in their homes. The more folks we can positively impact, the better. There are so many positive aspects of the shooting sports, and it is our goal to help spread the knowledge to as many folks as we can.

 Q: You’ve stayed in business when many new, very well-funded ranges have failed. What’s made the difference?

First of all – we really hate to see other ranges fail.  We don’t celebrate when that happens.

One thing that has helped us survive economic booms and busts is that we’ve been very disciplined about managing our growth. When we do something new, we try to scale up instead of going at it full bore. Our partner, Leroy Ussery, is a master at this very important area.  We would not be where we are today were it not for his brilliance and passion for not only H&H but the shooting sports.

A lot of people think, “If we were only bigger, our problems would go away.” But that’s simply not true, especially when that growth is rapid. Rapid growth brings rapid problems. If you don’t have the right people in place and aren’t prepared for growth, you might be better off not growing at all.

I want to stress that the people, our “team members”, piece is really important. We work hard to find and hire the right folks who care about the business and the sport. And when we hire them, we take care of them. In return, they take really good care of us. With any business it is important to focus on finding the right person for the job, you cannot look at staffing as a “warm body” mentality. Our team members are passionate and knowledgeable about the shooting sports, and it is their expertise that we rely on to serve our guests.

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