Nichols and Dimes – August 2019 Interview

By Alexis Menard On August 13, 2019 12:00 pm

The interview below is in first person from the viewpoint of Larry Nichols, Lecturer of Management and Executive-in-Residence, held with Alexis Menard, Web and Social Media Assistant on August 6, 2019. The views stated below are the opinions of Mr. Nichols. Nichols and Dimes is intended to be a monthly advice column, and we are accepting questions or interview topics here. If you have any questions or concerns, please email almenard@umich.edu.


Three reasons why every person can’t have a million dollars when they retire: irrational decisions, uncontrollable misfortunes, or a missed opportunity.

Every person has access to the world market. When the internet became popular in the 90s, a friend and I decided to sell boat anchors. We established a website and sold boat anchors. To our amazement, we sold anchors to every continent in the world, except Antarctica. We discovered penguins don’t need boat anchors. I sold my anchors from Flint, Michigan and I didn’t know anything about the boating industry but we had the power to be able to connect to global markets and utilizing this new technology.

It was overwhelming to learn that there is a market for everything. To be successful, learn how to tap into that market. Use tools you already have like your cell phone or community resources, like a local computer lab. Do the research and figure out a way to get your idea or business into the market. Attend an event with the Innovation Incubator ([IN]) or have your idea assessed at 100K Ideas.

We have one of the most remarkable business economies in the world currently. People have more resources and opportunities now than at any time in the history of our world. I only see better things from here for those entering the marketplace unless they make irrational decisions.