I'm not a detail guy. I depend on accountants and administrators to do my detail stuff for me, but I do know the overall picture and I know that if you put business people together in a room, not just politicians, they could shrink the deficit tremendously by good business tactics.
Why pour shampoo into a rabbit's eyes to see how much shampoo you can put in an adult's eyes before they go blind? I'll put them in my hair, in my eyes before I would give them to anyone else.
At least once a year, I meet with a group called the Giving Pledge. It's a group of billionaires - including me, Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, and Ted Turner - who have pledged to give away most of their money to charity. We meet for three days to talk about what we're doing to help make the planet a better place to live.
I remember once in junior high school, on a Friday, my mom came home from work and said to my brother and I, 'You know, between us, we have only 27 cents, but we have food in the refrigerator, we have our little garden out back, and we're happy, so we are rich.'
The biggest hurdle is rejection. Any business you start, be ready for it. The difference between successful people and unsuccessful people is the successful people do all the things the unsuccessful people don't want to do. When 10 doors are slammed in your face, go to door number 11 enthusiastically, with a smile on your face.
Most people would rather sit on a plane for two hours than spend two days on a train, but there's nothing comparable to taking a relaxing rail journey with your family or good friends.
America is one of the biggest businesses in the world, and the people who run it can't balance their budget. We need business people in there and lobbyists out of there.
Being able to communicate with a loved one that you haven't talked to in a while because of some communication break makes their life and your life in a much better place.
I wanted to do my part to help preserve that golden age of travel... I step aboard The Patron Tequila Express railcar, and I go back in time to the days when a long journey was something fun and very special.
In philanthropy, many of us give a little bit and each year we give more and more to see what actually works and not just throw money out there and see if it's going to work. If the government did the same thing, fabulous.
I could go insane if I obsessed over every little detail of all of my companies. My management philosophy is to pay attention to the vital few and ignore the trivial many.
I don't micromanage, but I do care deeply about every product we make. Every one goes through me, and I try most of our products before they go to market, including our John Paul Pet flea and tick shampoo. If I don't like it, it's not coming out.
We're the only major company in the U.S. that is solely in the professional beauty industry. We promised hairdressers when we started that we would stay with them. If I went retail tomorrow then we would be four times our size overnight, but I'm going to be the one guy who kept his word.
I like to live well and I feel good about it because I know how much we give back. There's plenty for my family, now let's take care of the rest.
My first job, 9 years old, part-time, was selling Christmas cards door-to-door. Ten years old, my brother and I had paper routes. We delivered a morning paper called the 'L.A. Examiner.' Get up at 4 o'clock, fold your papers, deliver them and get ready for school.
When you start with next to nothing, all you've got is a lot of thought, a lot of innovation, figuring new ways to do things without using a lot of money.
I don't use e-mail or a computer. I would be so inundated that I wouldn't be able to get any work done. Instead, I do everything in person or on the phone.