Day 1,614 – Thankful for the Learning the Story Behind the Creation of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos

Normally at this time of the year I’m flying to a different part of the country for training and a celebration of the previous year with Express. Last year at about this time we were all in Nashville and were wondering what this COVID stuff was all about and wondering what impact it may have on our business. Never in a million years would I have guessed how different the world would become just a few weeks later.

Thanks to the power of technology we were able to still have the meeting this year, albeit virtual instead of in person. The main speaker this morning was Richard Montanez, the creator/inventor of Flamin Hot Cheetos. I had not heard of him before and was not sure what to expect from his presentation.

From the beginning of his presentation I was hooked. He shared his personal backstory, how he’d grown up, and how he went from being a janitor at Frito Lay to presenting his wild new idea to the CEO. You can check out much of it yourself at – it’s a wild story!

What I appreciated the most about Richard’s story was his grit and how he looks at the world differently. As a janitor he volunteered to ride along with a sales rep on his day off to learn more about the business. Once he had an idea he kept driving and pushing until he got it presented. He saw a niche and an opening where no one else did.

This morning it reminded me to focus on my passion, to push towards my dreams, and to stay gritty while looking t the world through my own eyes. I may never come up with something as wild as Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, but I’ll credit Richard for a little bit of whatever it is I do come up with. His speech this morning was some pretty awesome dream fuel.

Whoever would’ve thought the backstory of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos would be inspirational?


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