Mike’s Note — Flamin’ Hot Cheetos

Mike Preuss
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When I started drafting the note earlier this week I was going to ask you about Covid-19 and how it will impact your business in the short, medium and long term.

Well… a lot has changed in 72 hours and you would think we are going through GDPR again with how many emails I’ve received from vendors that I haven’t heard from in years. I don’t want to make light of the situation, it is serious, but figured you might be tired of the constant reminder. (*some extra notes at the end)

Instead, I want to share the story of Richard Montañez. If you haven’t read his story yet — please do. It made the rounds a couple years ago but want to re-share as it is one of my favorites. In short, Montańez was a janitor at a Frito-Lay plant but became the inventor of the Flamin’ Hot Cheeto and is now a VP at Frito Lay.

Two of my favorite quotes from the article:

  • “There’s no such thing as ‘just a janitor”
  • “Act like an owner”

Great ideas, innovations and processes can bubble up from anywhere in an organization. It took guts for Montańez to call Roger Enrico (CEO at the time) to pitch the idea. It took equal guts from Enrico to be open and receptive to fielding a call from someone at the Cucamonga plant.

Last Week’s Note – The Press

  • “Whenever that happens, I’ve called it “the floodgates have opened” and I do the exact same thing. Love it”
  • “To me, skills are highly influenced by your state of mind, mind and body fitness, your relationship with your loved ones, what you ate 2 hours ago… And much more. In some days, you’ll be able to overcome some challenges much more easily than in some others.”
  • “I just wanted to say thanks for the email below; coming during the cancellation of a major event, it was a calming and encouraging read”