Like most establishments, The Linn Companies started out slow and steady. Standard Oil, now known as BP, handed the keys to one of its stations to its manager, Clarence Linn, in 1964. The trusted former employee became a business owner and, in 1972, Standard Oil offered him ownership of another station. The success of the two Minnesota stations set Linn Companies up for significant growth, and in the ’80s and ’90s the company began diversifying into other channels related to the automotive market. 

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Some people say customers aren’t loyal anymore, but Dick Hedahl, president and CEO of Hedahls Auto Plus, thinks differently. “People say there’s no loyalty, but that’s because they haven’t earned it,” he insists. “We have customers who are really awfully loyal to us. Their sales volume is very consistent year over year. They call us when they need something, and we chase it down and find it. People buy from their friends, whether going to a favorite hardware store or a car dealer. And they know they can count on us to take care of their shop and equipment needs. You develop friendships in the business, and that’s where you go for your support. I think there is good loyalty, but you have to earn it.”

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