Who Started IKEA and How | Where the Customer Provides the Service (The IKEA Story Part 1)

Show Notes

Learn the IKEA story and how Ingvar Kamprad built one of the largest furniture companies on the planet by going against conventional wisdom.

The IKEA Story | Where the Customer Provides the Service

Ingvar Kamprad

Pronunciation – ING-VAR CAMP-ROD

Pronunciation – Sound effect – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Sv-Ingvar_Kamprad.ogg

Ingvar lived from 1926 to 2018 and was 91 at the time of his death. When Ingvar Kamprad died the estimates of his net-worth ranged wildly. Some organizations reported he had a net-worth of perhaps $100 million, yet Forbes has estimated him to be one of the world’s wealthiest people with a net worth of $28 billion. Either way, he did well financially as a result of creating an iconic brand and 398 stores.

The name IKEA comes from the founder’s initials and hometown –

Ingvar – ING-VAR https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Sv-Ingvar_Kamprad.ogg  

Kamprad – CAMP ROD

Elmtaryd Agunnaryd (Swedish home furnishings retailer; derived from founder’s initials and hometown) IKEA.

1926 – Ingvar was born on March 30th of 1926. He grew up in the province of Smaland, in southern Sweden. He grew us as a dyslexic young man who preferred to spend time with his animals and who struggled in school. His family grew up very poor and he made his money selling matches and pencils to kids in the villages.

1943 – Age 17 – As Ingvar began to improve his skills selling matches to neighbor kids from his bicycle he then decided to expand his business by beginning to sell fish. He then moved on to selling decorations for Christmas trees, pencils, pens, other office supplies, and seeds. He then starts an on-the-fly mail-order company and is able to get his products to the trains by hauling them in a local milk van.

Entrepreneur at the Age of 17

He grew up on a farm in the lake-dotted province of Smaland, in southern Sweden, a dyslexic boy who milked cows and found it hard to concentrate in school. His family was poor, and he earned money selling matches and pencils in villages. At 17, he registered his mail-order business in household goods, calling it Ikea, formed of his initials and those of his farm, Elmtaryd, and village, Agunnaryd.

1950 – Age 24 – Ingvar decided to begin at mail order company selling furniture which was being produced in the forest which was near to his home via his mail-order catalog. His first line of furniture was very popular and so he decided to stop selling everything else entirely and to begin focusing on producing furniture.

1952 – Age 26 – Ingvar decided to open his first IKEA showroom in the town of Almhult, which is now home to the IKEA Museum.

1953 – Age 27 – Ingvar begins advertising. At this point in his life, he realized that to go to the next level he needed to stop making sales calls and to begin advertising his business in the local newspaper. Obsessed with the belief that every day people should be able to afford quality insurance, he begins to sell furniture that requires assembly. The idea of selling furniture that is not yet assembled was crazy to most outsiders at the time, but customers loved it.

At IKEA Customer Service Means That the Customer Must Provide Themselves with the “Service”

Ingvar grew the company to become the world’s largest retailer of furniture by staying focused on his niche of providing the most inexpensive furniture possible. IKEA became famous as the furniture of choice for college dormitories, 1st apartments and starter homes all around the world. In the world of retail, he broke all of the rules by selling customers furniture that they would have to assemble themselves. And most of the instructions did not have words so that people all around the world could understand them.

The Antithesis of Customer Service | Ingvar Found His Lane and Stuck In It to Now Offer You 400 Inconvenient Locations to Serve You

Ingvar was one of the first retailers to really focus on flat-packing furniture as a tremendous cost savings. They were also one of the few retailers on the planet to purposely locate their stores near transportation hubs, near major ports and away from the major shopping districts to again make their prices even lower.

Worth the Drive and the Swedish Meatballs

Ingvar and his business team believed that if they could create a compelling experience for customers by offering them the lowest prices, and the right mix of furniture customers would be willing to drive to them and to spend their day shopping for that “once a year” furniture purchase. In order to encourage people to stay at the IKEA stores longer and to improve the experience, IKEA began serving Swedish meatballs to all of its customers.

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Audio Transcription

During today’s business coach show, we are breaking down the ikea story. How did the story of the the furniture store that everybody knows called ikea? A lot of people know of the store ikea, but they don’t know they don’t know the weird start, their the origins of the company and I am so today show’s entitled it’s your face shows titled the ikea story, where the customer provides the service in so I really really went deep into my research for this. When the guy started, the company’s name is ingvar kamprad. It’s ingvar and I’ve got a little a pronunciation on the show notes to all the listings. You can click it there and it’ll play his name, but it’s ingvar kamprad and this guy was born in 1926 and he lived in till 2018. He died at the age of 91 ingvar before he died. Forbes went kind of wild with his net worth estimate. Forbes thought that he may be worth as much as 28 billion dollars. That’s a lot or as little as 100 million, and the reason why they couldn’t tell because I couldn’t tell the truth. Net worth is because he put basically all of his money back in to ikea, which was owned by a business coach trust. So technically it’s not his net worth and so the store before his passing. He grew up to a level where I had 398 stores, and it was very a very iconic play search up. Have you been to a nike? I have I have been to ikea multiple times? What is your opinion of the ikea storage prince? If you are someone who enjoys accessorizing decorating, putting things together for a house or a home, then you are absolutely going to love this place, because there is everything under the sun that you would want to put in your house, or these places now, let’s say you’re a typical manbearpig like myself and you maybe don’t enjoy the finer as to hate this I hate that place.

It is specifically designed it if you never been to it. It’s literally amazed that you have to walk through and they literally guide you through the entire store and you’re going in one direction. It’s not like a walmart where you this big doors at the front. You just walk in it’s like nope arrows on the floor. You can not get out unless you walk for 3 and 1/2 hours through this entire thing. Is they sell some pretty delicious meatballs aspect of the show. 1926 was born on march 30th of 1926. He grew up in the province. Event in southern is a sweden and a province there and he grew up as a dyslexic young man who prefer to spend time with animals. You really did struggle and screw. It is a struggle in school. He grew up very, very poor and he made his money selling matches and pencils two kids in the village 1326. That’s something else right. This is 1943! That’s why I want to give people too so 1943 what was happening there, but world war right, and so, if you look at the timeline of events there, he is his childhood I mean he spent a lot of time during his childhood growing up during the time of world war ii. Alright. So a lot of people were struggling with getting basic business coach supplies like pencils and matches, and so he made his money basically selling those those essentials to people that didn’t eat. 1943, 817, I think barbecue to improve his selling skills by selling matches to neighbor kids from his bicycle into the neighbor’s. He began to expand his business by selling fish. He then moved on to selling decorations for christmas, trees, pencils, pens and other supplies. He sold seeds for planting things, and then he starts a mail-order company and he’s able to get products to the trains by hauling them in a local milk van. So he kind of sneaks his products and get some to the train and ships it that way. So he is 817 he’s growing up in a small province and he decide you want to do I’m going to you know it just keeps pedaling good, stout. I don’t think a lot of people realize how long it took him, but it took him almost 7 years of peddling business coach goods before he had the idea to start selling furniture search up that 7 years right. That’s that’s so common in one thing that I’m already noticing about this year. When is that you know hey I’ve got to get these products to the train. What am I going to do? I’ll use the milk van so he’s being resourceful and not trying to figure out how to get more resources at the beginning stage. Right now, I think a lot of folks I feel like when you start a business. What happens if you have that initial excitement to start the business they want to get wealthy really quickly as a result of starting to write but i. Think a lot of people don’t realize how long it takes to really build a successful, iconic brand. So I think about my company, dj connection.Com and still exist today. But when I started dj connection.Com there was no dj connection.Com. There was no dj connection business and I started out of my dorm room. 1999 I did not receive the united states small business administration, entrepreneur of the year award until 2007.

So how many years is that me? How many years is 1999 to just seven years in gc, eight years in I flip the script I realized you I’m, really really good at growing businesses as a business coach and I think I could take my skill set that I’ve developed the crew, the dj business and put those into different industries and be more profitable, create more time for them or financial freedom and some paint for the same thing for 7 years he’s grinding, and then you decide to know what I’m going to start a mail-order company selling furniture which is being produced in the forest nearby near my home and I’m, going to make it available in the catalog choose. First line of french was very popular, so he decided he wanted to sell basic everything else to eat. Biscuits, i, die, imma, stop selling everything else and just focus on furniture, because the furniture is done so well. He began the process of becoming a furniture company. Now 1952 is 26. Now ingvar decides to open his first ikea showroom in a town, nearby. I get out of this pronounce the name. It’s called awesome hope it’s a l m h. U l t I m holt, which is now home to the ikea museum in full years 10 years and he begins to discover this thing called advertising advertising. He realized. This point. Is life in order to go to the next level? He had to stop make personal sales calls and he said he needed to begin business coach program advertising in the local newspaper and so because he can scale get in front of more ideal unlikely. Buyer get a cast a bigger net right, so I think about advertising. There’s no shame in the game. You shouldn’t feel bad at what people say:i don’t want to advertise I grow primarily via word-of-mouth. That’s true, you’re, a healthy company. People should refer you to have two friends and family, and in that should happen kind of organically. But there’s one company that reached out to us and kind of a fun story, but at the thrive time show we have our 2-day interactive workshops. Our next one is coming up here on april 16th, april, 13th and 14th at the thrive time show world headquarters in jenks, oklahoma and our world that are thrive time show office. Is there this weekend and so it’ll be coming up there on the 13th and 14th and i?

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He begins to sell furniture that requires assembly. The idea of selling furniture that is not yet assembled was crazy to most outside of the time and couldn’t meet but turns down people like to make their own furniture chuck there’s a lot of people that would prefer just save the money and to make the furniture themself I don’t understand this because I’m somebody who really value my time I’m more than money but turns a lot of people love the ikea concept. We come back where to talk to it. We got the break down the ikea experience was made and how he created a word of mouth monster, but how we never stopped advertising. How did ikea become one of the world’s most valuable companies will tell you the rest of the story. We come back from the break. You listen to thrive. Time show on your radio I’m about the temple of doom. Okay. Well, with the shops at try to consume for the future that I can pursue what from the mountaintop now I can conclude that you have what it takes if you want to get ready to ever that thrive time show on talk. Radio 1170 broadcasting live from the center of the business coach universe. It’s business school without the bs featuring optometrist turned entrepreneur, dr. Robert zoellner, with ussba out of the year clay, clark, radio or podcast download. What is the life and times of ingvar ingvar guevara. He is the guy who started I kea. Now the story began in 1943 at the age of 17 he’s a dyslexic. Kid didn’t do very well in school, but he really knew that the people in this community needed matches and pencils from the time of world war ii, and we found a way to buy a blow and tell him higher. That’s what it it and over time you thought you know what the people know me. They did not know me as the street vendor guy, so I’mma start selling christmas trees. They said you know what I’m going to start selling office supplies I’m going to start selling seeds. It’s always begins to develop the skill of selling things very resourceful guy and so the age of 24. He kind of. Has this concept of you know people like to buy everything from me already I’ll do a mail order where people can order the things they want through the mail.

This is previous to amazon. Obviously, there was mail order. That was a big dummy, the big thing, and so he goes into the forest which is near where he lived, and he says you know gosh I’m noticing that these guys in the forest he’s a live in sweden by the way you know they’re, building all this great furniture, but they don’t know how to sell it. So I’m going to go to those guys and say guys if you will put the furniture in my mail order catalog we can sell it that way. It does really well really well until he decides it again. This is something most entrepreneurs can’t do. I, don’t i, don’t understand. This is the first big teaching moment. I want to give all the listeners out there i, don’t know why you would stay in the niche if it’s not profitable, right, i, don’t know why you’d be loyal to a certain product. If it’s not proper, i, don’t i, don’t i, don’t get the idea that you don’t because you’ve always been a business coach or a plumber. You should just stay as a plumber. I don’t understand unless you’re trying to revolutionize the nonprofit plumbing industry, very, very unprofitable and industry, but they just stay in it and they said that’s what I got to school for the dark career should be much more I’m dynamics. In that he realizes look. You know. People I’m not like a whole bunch of money I’m still in his other things with his furniture did well and the prophets were good, so I’m going to go ahead and just go all in on printer so, it, begins, just selling furniture and sage 26. This is 9 years into his adventure. He decided that he’s going to open up a showroom, so it opens up a showroom in his in his community, an e27. It occurs to him. You know what cuz I got to I got to stop making sales calls and just stopping by people. Businesses I got to stop networking as a business coach and start advertising and that’s the sign of maturity for a business owner. That’s when you know your business will scale it’s when you decide it’s time to advertise. Whenever you get to a place where you say you know what I believe I mailed it now it’s time to scale it and so but heat. This is what this is:the concept that he had, which I thought was insane i, still think it’s insane, but people love it. His idea was this I’m going to sell used. Furniture super super cheap, but you have to build it yourself. Would that lose you as a customer that have to build the furniture yourself? I have ikea furniture that I’ve built myself at my current home. Do you hate it? It’s actually pretty easy to put together. They’ve done a really really good job with her instructions. There’s a little like outlines of people showing you. What way to put things I can totally see why you would not want to do that, but I do know like I’ve got friends that live. You know in tiny little apartment in new, york city, and you can actually get like a good size table up into your apartment without having to you know, navigate to halls in the stairs, because it’s in boxes and you can put together in your apartment, i-think it ikea. Customer service means that the customer must provide themselves with a surface pretty much focused on his niche.

In providing the most inexpensive furniture possible, ikea became famous as the furniture of choice for college dormitories. First apartments in starter homes all over the world in the world of retail. He broke all the rules by selling customers, furniture that they would have to assemble themselves, and most of the instructions did not have words. So a lot of people are on the road early on, couldn’t understand how to put them together and it became kind of a joke of like dude. How long is it taking you to assemble at that table? You know became kind of bike here, but a lot of times don’t share horror stories about the hardest thing I ever bought to put together idea is overtime. You got more more efficient at it. He got better and better explaining how to do it and ikea now is a massive massive company. It’s a massive company and what he did is he decided to create an experience. It was a hundred percent sold out on what I did and then idea was to have the most affordable furniture on the planet. That was the idea. I think you did it too I mean it’s pretty pretty good prices in before he passed away. He had nearly 400 inconvenient locations to serve you and you know why he had four hundred locations that weren’t located in maine retail areas. Does it have anything to do with like where the ports were located? Cuz, it’s cheaper. Everything he’s going to do is because it’s cheaper ingvar was one of the first retailers to refocus on flat packing the furniture as a tremendous cost-saving. He was one of the first who’s 1/4 retailers in the planet to purposely locate his stores near transportation hubs, major ports in a way from the shopping district in the warehouse district, so I can make the prices even lower I mean he made it where it’s like not mean mathis brothers in tulsa is conveniently located by 169 in the major thoroughfare, 71st and 169 in tulsa by the by the mall and shopping right. I can use those are located like in a spot where nobody else is as a business coach, and so what he thought was he wanted to make the average furniture shopping experience 3 hours long and he did it. I want to make sure you get this.

When you go into you talk to you, dude. You touched on earlier to see. If you haven’t been to one before you have to follow the maze you have to follow the path, so you walk in there’s arrows there on the floor. That point you this is where you’re going, you can’t go where you want to go cuz, actually a track or I can wait there. If you have to go a certain path and it should go along the path, then you’re like well i, don’t, but let’s get to what we’re already here last night last time I was there. I actually went through the exit on purpose to go backwards, just to kind of see what was going on and people were looking at me like I was crazy, like he’s walking at us what is happening right now. I definitely have extended that shopping experience by the layout of their store sweden, and so he decided to bring swedish meatballs into the stores out of android. Videographers are been to an ikea, but if you haven’t been there, maybe I can use it it. It said you got to go there. One time just experienced this, please be said. The reason why he put the swedish meatballs in the stores. If he realize hey, if we can get people to convince him to be there for hours, they will buy more into the whole business coach Experience is designed to take forever. Here you go in and I’m just telling. It is definitely a 3 hour event 3 hours to getting some things done quickly. You don’t want your order. Your office supplies to take 3 hours. If you want your office supplies, if you want to take like 2 minutes to get drop the supplies one of our grade, advertisers is onyx imaging, yes, imaging.Com imaging.Com, and they are your one-stop-shop for unmarried off the stuff printer cartridges manufactured here in tulsa office supplies supply salmon next day, delivery price on those office supplies so I smash imaging.Com. During the break. We come back more of the ikea story stage

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