Barbara Corcoran is the real estate mogul who started the Corcoran Group and, according to the ABC Televison Web site, is worth $5 billion. Currently, she appears on Sunday nights as one of the executives on Mark Burnett's latest reality show, Shark Tank. (Based on the successful Japanese show, Dragon's Den,entrepreneurs pitch their ideas and finance proposals to the sharks who negotiate and either offer deals or pass.)
I'm proud to say that I swam with that shark years ago! In the 1990's, when I first started giving tours of the city, Barbara Corcoran was a local host for the YPOs (Young Presidents' Organization). She wanted all of the guides and transportation escorts, all of whom were dressed in suits, to show enthusiasm by wearing a green foam Liberty crown. She promised to pay us five dollars whenever she saw one of us in the crown.
Everyone was insulted. This was ridiculous! We had dignity. No deal!
But as they complained, I realized I could keep the crown in my jacket pocket and still make five dollars, because I could always just put it on whenever I heard her voice. She's really not very quiet.
And that's what I did.
I heard her coming into the lobby? I put the crown on?
I heard her coming around the corner? I put the crown on.
I heard her in the break room? I put the crown on and went for a bagel.
I heard walking to the elevator? I put the crown on and went for a ride.
Thirteen times I whipped out that crown and immediately pocketed a Lincoln (as well as the crown).
That's right: $65! 100% profit! No loss of dignity.