My Father's Business: The Small-Town Values That Built Dollar General into a Billion-Dollar Company (Paperback)
The first-person account of the family that changed the American retail landscape that Dave Ramsey calls a must-read.
Longtime Dollar General CEO Cal Turner, Jr. shares his extraordinary life as heir to the company founded by his father, Cal Turner, Sr., and his grandfather, a dirt farmer turned Depression-era entrepreneur. Cal's narrative is at its heart a father-son story, from his childhood in Scottsville, Kentucky, where business and family were one, to the triumph of reaching the Fortune 300 -- at the cost of risking that very father/son relationship. Cal shares how the small-town values with which he was raised helped him guide Dollar General from family enterprise to national powerhouse.
Chronicling three generations of a successful family with very different leadership styles, Cal Jr. shares a wealth of wisdom from a lifetime on the entrepreneurial front lines. He shows how his grandfather turned a third-grade education into an asset for success. He reveals how his driven father hatched the game-changing dollar price point strategy and why it worked. And he explains how he found his own leadership style when he took his place at the helm -- values-based, people-oriented, and pragmatic. Cal's story provides a riveting look at the family love and drama behind Dollar General's spectacular rise, pays homage to the working-class people whose no-frills needs helped determine its rock-bottom prices, and shares the life and lessons of one of America's most compelling business leaders.
About the Author
Cal Turner, Jr. grew up in a Scottsville, Kentucky, household where business and family were one. After graduating Vanderbilt University, he served for three years as an officer in the United States Navy before beginning his career at Dollar General. He served as CEO for thirty-seven years, and during his tenure, the number of DG stores rose from 150, with sales of $40 million, to more than 6,000, with sales in excess of $6 billion.
Turner has served on the boards of companies like Shoney's and First American, and of educational, civic and charitable organizations including Vanderbilt and Fisk universities, and has been president of the board of governors of the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce. His many awards include the Presidential Award for Private Sector Initiatives (presented by Ronald Reagan) and the Vanderbilt Distinguished Alumnus Award. A committed lifelong Methodist, Turner was inducted in 2001 into the Fellows of the Society of John Wesley by the Tennessee Conference of the UMC. He lives in Nashville, TN.
Rob Simbeck is a writer and editor of over twenty books. He was ghostwriter of Cal Turner's first book, co-written with Howard Olds, Led To Follow. He lives in Nashville, TN.
Mr. Turner writes with touching candor about the challenges of sustaining a family business.—Wall Street Journal
An inspiring story...if you are an ambitious businessman or entrepreneur, My Father's Business will show you the future direction....should be a required read for the teachers and students of business.—The Washington Book Review
[This] well-written, honest book...is recommended for the general reader, business owners, entrepreneurs, job changers, and business-school students who want to understand the thinking that shaped the company's growth and fueled its problems.—Booklist
My Father's Business is the story of what it took to build Dollar General into a national retail chain from its rural, Kentucky roots and will encourage anyone with a dream of building a business.—Doug McMillon, president and CEO, Walmart
My Father's Business ought to be required reading in any business school . . . . a great book!
—Peter Handal, President and CEO, Dale Carnegie Training
A fascinating glimpse into the philosophy and logistics of the dollar-store business model...—Chapter16.org
A revealing and colorful book . . . Cal Jr.'s openness about the trials and tribulations both within the family and the company itself, as well as his personal reflection in retirement, is something we can all learn from and is sure to help us be more honest in our own self-assessments.
—Senator Bob Corker
My Father's Business is a MUST-READ for an aspiring young entrepreneur and an enjoyable read for anyone.—Dr. Thomas Frist, co-founder, Hospital Corporation of America
A fantastic book, for new entrepreneurs and CEOs alike, and it will inspire everyone who wants to integrate personal aspirations, family values, and best business practices.—Rev. Dr. Becca Stevens, founder and president of Thistle Farms
The story of Dollar General is an example of what makes our country so great.—George Roberts, co-founder and co-chair, KKR
This is more than the tale of Dollar General . . . . It is a story of family turmoil as well as wild success.—Senator Lamar Alexander
I highly recommend this book as an insight into what is really important in business.—Michael W. Smith, singer/songwriter