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Fleet Feet’s Dave Zimmer on Being a Community-Minded Franchisee

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Maybe you feel inspired by Sunday’s Chicago marathon -- or NBC Chicago’s incredible coverage of said event -- and you have running on the brain. Maybe it’s got you thinking about running a sporting goods store or a running goods store. After all, the Chicago Marathon, according to the Chicago Marathon, is the city’s biggest tourism every year, and that means a lot of business year-round for everyone who’s training and anyone who blows into town woefully under-prepared.

    But just franchising a Foot Locker doesn’t really cut it. Or, it shouldn’t, if you’re serious about making an impact and also a name for yourself in the business. Someone who’s opinion is worth seeking out and listening to is Dave Zimmer’s -- he’s the owner of Fleet Feet Sports in Chicago, and has held that title for the last 16 years. He’s endeavored -- and succeeding -- at making a mark both locally among his customers and nationally among the other franchisees by being the largest grossing franchise in the company since 2000. (He opened up here in 1996.)

    Fleet Feet on How to "Run" a Business

    [CHI] Fleet Feet on How to "Run" a Business
    This specialty shoe store had an interesting take on customer service.

    There’s a lot of reasons why, and I stopped by his store in Old Town to hear them in his own words. Heed!

    David Wolinsky is a freelance writer and a lifelong Chicagoan. In addition to currently serving as an interviewer-writer for Adult Swim, he's also a comedy-writing instructor for Second City. He was the Chicago city editor for The Onion A.V. Club where he provided in-depth daily coverage of this city's bustling arts/entertainment scene for half a decade. When not playing video games for work he's thinking of dashing out to Chicago Diner, Pizano's, or Yummy Yummy. His first career aspirations were to be a game-show host.