Ruble Hord has been the top salesman for Northwestern Mutual Insurance Company. He is also an early adopter in doing good and doing well.
(Yes, that is his real name: Ruble, as in Russian currency. And Hord rhymes with Lord, jokes Hord.)
He ran for elective office a few years ago. He spent $240,000. Of his own money. After-tax dollars.
At the final get-together after his concession speech, I asked him about his public spirit, his private money.
Ruble, do you feel bad about spending that much money?
No, he says.
No? Here it comes, I thought, now he would turn philosophical.
He is almost smiling. No, There was no way I could lose.
Excuse me? I’m lost. This is not usual.
I really thought I could win and serve, he explains. But in losing the race I might win…
In the public-spirit spirit of John Wanamaker and Ben Franklin Ruble Hord demonstrated great dexterity in attempting to make a difference. But also, incidentally, make a buck.
I’m an insurance salesman, says Ruble who has his home phone number listed in the phone book. I want people to know about me.
They certainly do now, I venture.
The money spent was the cheapest marketing I could buy, says Ruble. Even in losing, all was not lost.
Even though he didn’t plan on losing the political race, he was still a winner. Ruble Hord is a master salesman and a master marketer.
Your Business Blogger has always thought that lawyers were natural political candidates because lawyers, well, know law, I supposed.
But no. Lawyers, as small business owners being well ahead of the trend, would run for office. The political campaign is little different from a marketing campaign. Lawyers would either pick up votes.
Small business owners have a passion for making a difference in their neighborhoods. Running for office might be another avenue to serve.
Serve the citizens. Serve your customers.