Bob Reiss

In: Business and Management

Submitted By Canada
Words 13107
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BoReissROBERT REISS Robert “Bob” Reiss, HBS 1956, started out as a waiter at resorts in upstate New York. He moved on after HBS to run the personalized-pencil division of a small New York company. He saw that as an opportunity to learn about running a business while someone else “picked up the tab.” He then started a sales rep company and soon stumbled on opportunities in adult games like chess and magic. Eventually he sold his company to a needlecraft company. Bob then founded R&R to create and sell games, including the TV Guide Trivia game produced during the Trivial Pursuit craze in the 1980s. Bob described his entrepreneurial career in a video interview from his office in Boca Raton, Florida, in February 2001. Interviewer: Amy Blitz, HBS Director of Media Development for Entrepreneurial Management. The Early Years I grew up in the Bensonhurst section of Brooklyn. Both my parents worked. They taught me a strong work ethic and a strong sense of morality. They also taught me to never, ever complain about anything in life. I had a brother who was three years younger than me. We grew up in a very competitive environment. We weren’t aware that it was competitive since that was just the way things were. Sports were everything in our world. We had millions of street games in front of the house. Basketball was the big sport, because in Brooklyn we didn’t have the big playing fields, so everybody played in the schoolyards. Three-man basketball was the game all weekend long. In the winter you’d shovel the snow away and play. The deal was that you played three-man ball and if you lost you got off the court. Winners stayed on. If you lost, you might wait two hours to get back on the court. The games were very competitive. We also learned how to pick our partners. To have a winning team in three-man ball, you need a good shooter, a good rebounder, and a good arguer. I was the…...

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