Denny Fryman, president, Ziebart of Indianapolis, has faced a mountain of obstacles and challenges in recent years.
Growing up on a farm taught him the value of hard work so he
had a reserve of strength to call upon during the hard times.
It also taught him to take advantage of opportunities.
"One Summer, my dad offered to pay me 50 percent of the farm's net profits, to be applied toward my college education, for my work," he
"As it turned out, we had a really good year and that motivation planted a seed in my mind for entrepreneurship."
was introduced to the Ziebart franchise opportunity through his brother-in-law, Dave Marshall.
hired a Detroit businessman who was making a name for himself with a business that manufactured a product that converted 4-wheel drive vehicles to part-time 4-wheel drive.
With a 30 percent savings in gas expenses, customers were interested.
"The product may have saved our business," Fryman
Although the relationship was short, it provided an entrée into other business opportunities.
decided to expand into the Indianapolis market and opened five stores in two years.
This scenario hit too close to home for Fryman
brother-in-law (who also owned Ziebart franchises in the Dayton, Ohio area) developed medical problems that left him disabled.
was asked to step in and run his
brother-in-law's eight stores, along with the eight he
now owned in Indianapolis.
"I was still the lead person in our lawsuit with the franchise and my business had just doubled," he
"The pressure was overwhelming.
There were also issues to be dealt with in the Indiana legislature, employees and management who were being constantly courted by the competition and the day-to-day business challenges.
Facing these obstacles head-on has been an ongoing learning experience.
credits the employees and management in working through the hard times.
The company is structured to allow employees to share in the rewards of entrepreneurship without the risk of investment.
Loyalty to vendors has also proven to benefit both sides of the equation.
Vendors are often participants in company programs with stronger relationships as everyone's reward.
Involvement in the franchise lawsuit forced Fryman
to release control.
"As a result of not micro-managing, I've actually found the team seeks my counsel even more," he