Name: Dina Mitchell
Company: Tropical Smoothie Cafe
Title: Nevada area developer and marketing director
What’s new with your company?
This year, we opened three new locations: Harmon Corner at Las Vegas Boulevard South and Harmon Avenue; inside the Excalibur food court; and a drive-thru in North Las Vegas at West Craig Road and North Commerce Street.
We have two more locations on the books to open next year.
What is the best business advice you have received, and whom did it come from?
The best advice I use any time I get frustrated or feel like I am failing is this quote from Thomas Edison: “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”
What challenges do you face doing business here?
At this point in our growth, it is finding smart locations that don’t impact existing locations’ sales. My main directive is to build solid stores with the right franchisees and continue to increase same-store sales. That is more important than building a Tropical Smoothie on every corner.
What’s the best part about living in Las Vegas?
I love that we have just about everything available to us 24 hours a day – food, shopping, entertainment.
The culture we have is amazing. The Smith Center is a great example. It offers shows comparable to those you would see on Broadway.
If you could change one thing about Las Vegas, what would it be?
I wish Vegas weren’t such a transient city. It seems that we are constantly tearing things down to build bigger and better ones in their place to please tourists. Now don’t get me wrong: That is how we build more schools, feed our families and make a living, but it would be nice to see more nostalgia and some of the older architecture here.
What do you do after work?
After work? What’s that?
What I love most is drinking a good bottle of wine with friends while solving the world’s problems. I love to cook, take pictures of food, travel, and most of all, help in any way I can a couple charities that touch my heart. It makes me feel good to help others, so good it’s hard to explain.
Describe your management style.
My style is to teach by example, help define my franchisees’ goals, be a cheerleader for those goals and sometimes push others into being successful. I try my best to lead by example.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I hope to be doing exactly what I am doing now but be a better version of myself, still continuing to give back and hopefully able to share all that I have built with a wonderful family of my own — all while working from my backyard sunbathing.
What is your dream job, outside of your current field?
I can honestly say that I have my dream job. I wear many hats and can choose to put a different one on each day.
I get to help people achieve their dreams by owning their own businesses. I get to help shape young lives with their first jobs. I get to give back to my community and help our community be a better place. Rarely do I ever get bored, and I am passionate about what I do. To me, that is a dream job.
What are you reading?
“The Four Agreements,” by Don Miguel Ruiz.
Blackberry, iPhone or Android?
For many years I carried both a Blackberry and an iPhone. Steve Jobs wins.
Whom do you admire and why?
Oprah. I love how she always wants to help other people be better versions of themselves, finds many ways to pay it forward and, most of all, how she didn’t let her circumstances restrain her from going after her dreams.
I also admire the compassion that the Dalai Lama teaches. I had the pleasure of seeing him speak twice, and just about everything that came out of his mouth was something I wanted to write down and remember daily. He has this peaceful nature. He inspires me to be more compassionate, take more breaths and enjoy life. Oh, and he is really funny, too!
What is your biggest pet peeve?
I have a low tolerance for people who are habitually not punctual. I have respect for people’s time, and I always stress if I am not a couple minutes early. If someone is late, I feel like they think their time is more important.
I also get frustrated with people who complain about their current life situation but never do anything about it. Everyone has the ability to be whatever they want and fulfill their dreams. The only person who can hold you back is yourself.
What is something that people might not know about you?
I am a big goofball. I love to make people laugh in any way possible, that “you can’t catch your breath and your cheeks hurt” kind of laugh that you don’t forget. I love those moments.
Anything else you want to tell us?
Thanks to all of our customers that have made this dream come true in Las Vegas. We’ll keep working our hardest to put out the best smoothie out there.