Friday, March 27, 2009

A Guest Blogger

This is a blog post by Antonio Neves, host of program called "Cool Runnings".
Although we hassled him and called him Tracy Morgan for most the day, he took it well and worked hard. He and his crew worked with us and followed us around on one February day in 2009. Check out the videos they compiled here:

Pike Place Fish: The Inside Scoop on Becoming World Famous

A Blog by Antonio Neves

On the surface, the open-air Pike Place Fish Market in Seattle is what you tend to expect. A diverse spread of fresh fish, fishmongers playfully barking at — and entertaining — customers and, of course, flying fish, crab and lobster tails. But beneath the surface is a team and philosophy that go beyond any newspaper headline or story.

As legend has it, when Pike Place Fish Market almost went out of business in the mid-1980s, it was saved when an employee said it should become “world famous.” Over the course of the next few years, that’s exactly what Pike Place Fish Market did. But for the life of me I couldn’t fathom what being “world famous” meant. Moreover, how does being “world famous” translate to success and, more important, more revenue? I asked members of the whole team what being “world famous” meant to them and, surprisingly, no one mentioned anything regarding fish or sales numbers. The varied answers all hinged on a consistent theme: Making a difference in the lives of others. Yes, these tough guys who sell fish want to make your life better. Whether while unloading fish from a truck at 6 a.m., entertaining customers or cleaning up at the end of the day, they’re not just making someone’s day — they’re working to change the world. It all starts with them and a choice they make every morning when they wake up.

To read more from Antonio, go here to follow his blog

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Who said winter is dead?

Ask anyone that works in the market and they'll love to tell you that business dies during the winter months (isn't it so easy to chime in on negativity?!) but at the special spot behind Rachel the Market foundation piggy bank, special things occur. The last blog post was a battle cry and this one will serve as evidence to let you know that we are in fact, being who we say we are.
We at the fish market refuse to stand still and react to all the crap in the world like recessions, cold weather and general complacency with the way the things are. That may be the way a lot of people are seeing the world but not us, we don't buy it. We get that people just want company for their bad moods but we've never gotten where we are doing things in an ordinary fashion.

The last week in February, Erik, Scott, Jim (our BizFutures consultant) and Johnny went to Houston to meet with over 250 employees of Memorial Hermann Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation. A standing ovation, an open invitation to join our movement for World Peace and some driving adventures through rural Texas and we now all know that we will be sticking around for as long as we say so. To get that many people who are doctors, physical therapists and succesful business professionals to touch dead fish in the middle of their work day and participate in a dialogue of communication and living a life of intention was pretty special. The people that make up Memorial Hermann are changing peoples' lives every moment of every day and we were honored to share our story and hear theirs. To still be doing presentations like this with such a timeless message and have people still out there with a listening for the principles that guide our everyday is just awesome.

As far as our winter at 86 Pike Place, we've been throwing hats onto peoples' heads, throwing fish into peoples' hands, heading to mussel farms (for the Penn Cove Musselfest), getting married in Hawaii, and continually bringing in wild salmon, fresh dungeness crabs and generating the energy and environment that we've always done (it's worked pretty well so no need to change too much!)

I'm not lying, this couple from Des Moines, Washington were buying salmon to feed their turtles! We like what we sell cause we always say "everyone has to eat" but this is an added bonus for which we could never plan.

Lisa Ling takes a break from world traveling, The View and Oprah to have some fun at our fish market! After some expert coaching from Taho, she caught the fish on her first attempt.

Yes, Kenny G has been spotted many times in Seattle. With all the music venues like The Triple Door, Jazz Alley and public radio stations like KEXP and KPLU, the rainy city is a hotspot for musicians of all interests. Here, he finds his long lost brother fishmonger Jaison Scott (who is now in Hawaii getting married!)

Johnny the boss got his salmon and crab dinner, then took a few minutes for the Microsoft Network (MSN) and a show they were filming about businesses who are continuing on in '09. After a 4:30 call, they were ready with cameras setup at 6am and rolling until our group meeting at Tai Tung Restaurant that night at 9pm. Not only did they ride in the truck with Scotty to get fish, but the host threw on the Grundens and learned to select, weigh, cut and package his very own King salmon. We don't know when the feature will air, but keep posted to see the previews, we know it will be a bit different from the 11 year old "customer service" video many of you may have seen.

And to add one last bit, many of us here in Seattle have been a bit distraught with the performance of our sports here in the northwest. I won't even go into the details about the Sonics basketball history, the Seahawks dismal '08 or the UW football program, but one bit of hope on the horizon that we hope to be part of is the new professional soccer team Seattle Sounders FC. With the greatest coach in the country (Siggi Schmidt), a great pickup from Sweden, and over 20,000 season tickets already sold (including five to Scotty and Jeremy here at the fish market), we are pumped for the world's game here in Seattle. We love being part of the community here and we know they all need the good fats and oils of fresh salmon to maintain optimal athletic performance.
The phrase "choose your attitude" or "change your conversation" are repeated a lot around here but sometimes it's pretty frickin' nice when something good happens to the general climate that makes you happy (it's a lot easier that way) and the Sounders have already brought that to the city of Seattle.