Sugar Wheel Works: Joys and Struggles of a Small Business in the Bike Industry
We recently did a shop visit with our friend Jude at Sugar Wheel Works and in the interviewing and editing process, I realized that this video was going to be different from our typical shop visit format. Usually, we try to keep them short and punchy, but as our interview went on we started hitting on some really interesting topics no one really talks about in the small business world within the bike industry: core business values over branding, the curse of “moderate success” and all the sleepless nights it takes to get there.
At the end of the first edit, the video ran 13 minutes. Laura and I debated about cutting two shorter videos, one that was the typical shop visit and the other that focused on the small business aspect. In the end we decided to release one 11 minute video and give our viewers (you) the benefit of the doubt that you are intelligent adults and would watch something beyond short attention span videos.
For us, the content about making it as a small business was too valuable to not be heard since it echoes a lot of our own challenges. There is a whole business side to PathLessPedaled (it is the reason we have been able to keep going for so long!) that many people are unaware of and that we share small glimpses of on our Instagram. There are definite risks and costs we pay for #livingthedream, which on some days seem too high to pay. But we push on always forward, just like we did when we were on our open ended bike tour. So for us, it was nice to hear Jude articulate similar challenges. Maybe it will be a topic of another post or video. I don’t know? Would anyone be interested in that? Let us know. For now, enjoy the interview with Sugar Wheel Works.
Francisco Santana May 18, 2017 at 6:58 am
I find this video to be very unique and valuable because the reality of living one’s dream is very complex. I am new to the bicycling world (just bought a Brompton) and my wife and I keep talking of how to start our own business and travel at the same time. Keep these videos coming!
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I didn’t even notice it was 11 minutes long. Jude is a star!
I would like more videos about small business. It seems knowing your stuff is one thing, but turning that into happy customers is quite another.