What Connects Coca-Cola, Lego, In-N-Out, Intuit, and Nike? Focus.

In the CEO Afterlife

Back in the ‘90s, LEGO had cluttered its corporate structure with the complexity that comes with acquiring a variety of businesses from apparel to theme parks. Management power rests with focused strategies on two product categories, athletic shoes and apparel.

How Not to Screw Up When You’ve Been Screwed Over

Let's Grow Leaders

Accusations make terrible leadership apparel. When I heard his story, I wanted to scream with him and for him. But screaming at water under the bridge just brings more rapids. I paused for what was an uncomfortably long time. Then, I whispered, “I know this hurts. But you have to stop.

Why You Should Bring a Startup Founder Mindset To Your Leadership

Terry Starbucker

Danny Clancy of Homeschool Apparel ). Look at business like a labyrinth, not a maze (thanks Ken Tomita of Grovemade). OK, I’m going to come clean here. I’m pretty set in my ways.

My Favorite Podcasts — Tim Ferriss.

Rich Gee Group

Ryan Holiday, author of The Obstacle Is The Way, started as a Director of Marketing at American Apparel at age 21 (!). If you know me, I am an avid podcast listener.

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The New Fashion Mantra for Office Attire: Comfort

Coaching Tip

People expect comfort," says Caroline Belhumeur, creative director for the apparel label Club Monaco. Styles and fabrics have taken so sharp a turn toward comfort that fashions may never entirely turn back again. It's not like in the '80s when people were stuffing themselves into blazers and stilettos and hobbling around.". There's less separation between weekday and weekend clothing these days, says Roopal Patel, fashion director of Saks Fifth Avenue.

20 Reasons Why Companies Should Do Less Better

In the CEO Afterlife

Today, 40% of Nike’s revenue comes from apparel and sporting goods. What’s left in apparel and sporting goods is a good strategic fit with Nike’s operations. Do Less Better is the name of my book. Do Less Better is also a culture and a strategy of organizations and their leaders.

3 Ways to Develop Winning Team Spirit

Michael Lee Stallard

Today, Varsity Brands includes Varsity Spirit, BSN Sports (sports apparel, footwear, and equipment) and Herff Jones (school graduation and achievement products). Photo of Jeff Webb courtesy of Varsity Brands.

You Know What A Customer Might Want, But Not Exactly

Strategy Driven

That’s why a CQB apparel configurator is something that you need to provide for businesses that want to quickly see how much their unique demands will cost. Your business should never assume to know what your customers always want.

15 Nuggets of Wisdom From 15 Entrepreneurs

Terry Starbucker

“Act small, think small” – Scott Hamlin , Co-founder of Looptworks , who makes apparel and accessories that are made by “upcycling” excess manufacturing materials. What are the secrets to entrepreneurial success?

Financial Fluency and A Leadership Opportunity

Great Leadership By Dan

While speaking this last week to one of the largest apparel companies in the country, I led an exercise that became an “Aha!” I did this recently at a large apparel company by drawing a simple circular diagram of the different ways we talk about sales. Guest post by Alan E.

Pamela Fields (Stetson) in “The Corner Office”

First Friday Book Synopsis

Here are a few insights provided during an interview of Pamela Fields, chief executive of Stetson, the hat and apparel company “People know that they can come to me and [.]. Adam Bryant conducts interviews of senior-level executives that appear in his “Corner Office” column each week in the SundayBusiness section of The New York Times.

Why Hippies Make Great Business Leaders

Great Leadership By Dan

Judith Goldhaft employed the assistance of fabric designer and fellow hippie gal, Jodi Palladini, to create an apparel design that would permit San Francisco’s homeless women to sell their very own fabric creations. Guest post from Michael Klassen : After three decades of working in marketing, I thought I had heard or read nearly every story of innovation and entrepreneurship out there. Then I uncovered a story of business invention and reinvention that nobody knew anything about.

REI Sets The Example For Creating And Living Core Values

Eric Jacobson

You can learn from Recreational Equipment Incorporated , better known as REI -- an outdoor gear and apparel co-op. Are you a leader who is struggling with how to write your company's core values?

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A Monster of an Idea

In the CEO Afterlife

On top of that, I found the Monster logo on an array of items ranging from apparel to condoms – so much for the branding principles in Al Reis and Jack Trout’s best seller, The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing.

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Four Ways to Control How Your Business is Perceived

Strategy Driven

In 2014 a young employee of American Apparel tasked with finding a picture to fit in with a 4th of July celebration posted a picture of what turned out to be the Space Shuttle Challenger exploding to the corporate Tumblr account.

4 Fundamental Lessons for Leaders

Strategy Driven

In political campaigns, people literally clothe themselves in the apparel of leaders to share in their qualities. The first lesson of leadership: it is not about you. The essence of leadership is the ability to influence others.

What’s The Truth About Your Leadership?

Tanveer Naseer

In my previous piece, I looked at an underlying theme found among the numerous issues leaders in every industry face today and what this tells us about how we can be more successful in bringing out the best in those we lead.

The Fall of Competitive Advantage and the Rise of Transient Advantages


One such Strategista is Kay Krill, CEO of Ann Taylor (and Loft), a “ bellwether ” woman’s apparel retail store. “Strategy is stuck.

Gear up for the Holidays: Get a Head Start on your New Year Resolution Today!

Strategy Driven

And while you are at it, invest in some brand new training apparel and shoes too. It is that time of the year when you start thinking about the holidays. Finding just the right clothes for all those year-end do’s. Buying presents. Binging and letting yourself go.

GILDAN Case Study : Using CoachingOurselves Globally

Coaching Ourselves

Gildan is one of the world’s largest vertically-integrated manufacturers of basic apparel with over 50 000 employees worldwide. The Company controls almost every step in the manufacturing process, from raw materials to finished garments.

Entrepreneur Jake Thompson Shares His Story, Advice, And What's In Store For CED In 2015

Eric Jacobson

We have our apparel releases planned for the next year, but always take into account ideas people have or suggestions for colors. Some Tuesdays it may be a new apparel release (such as a limited-edition shirt), some could be a 72-hour sale, and others may be a special announcement.

Guest Post: 3 Steps to Magnetic Leadership

Lead on Purpose

My largest client is in the apparel industry with a multiplicity of brand names. By Alan E. Shelton. Perhaps one of the thorniest problems in business today, is how to create quality output without being specifically in charge. Product managers in coalition organizations know this all too well. How do you drive your goals when you are not in a line on an organizational chart? As a result, their organizational structure is not dependent on the normal hierarchal approach.

The Alchemy of Culture: 4 Key Ingredients from the Founder of Qor

Steve Farber

And we know his latest venture, men’s sports apparel startup, Qor (pronounced “core”), is already achieving over 30% yearly growth in part because it’s replicating the Athleta culture of caring.

9 Steps To Success with Your Home Business

Women on Business

She is the founder of the Love You Revolution , an empowering apparel line, writes guests articles for YourTango.com & is the style & travel expert for KSRO’s Travel Talk radio. Guest post by Micaela “Bubola” Passeri (learn more about the author at the end of this post). Home-based business professionals have challenges when it comes to keeping their work and personal space separate.

Is There a CEO Afterlife? | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

Former CEO of sports apparel maker Russell Corporation, Jack Ward puts his time and money into helping inner-city kids. In the CEO Afterlife. Main menu Home. Leadership. Branding. Is There a CEO Afterlife?

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Distant Replay: My Mid-Life Crisis | In the CEO Afterlife

In the CEO Afterlife

Her younger brother is wearing a blazer and a tie for the first time; he is proud of his new apparel, although the look on his face doesn’t support the premise. In the CEO Afterlife. Main menu Home. Leadership. Branding. Distant Replay: My Mid-Life Crisis.

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Give Your Business a Competitive Advantage with this 4-Letter Word

Steve Farber

Under Armour–which has gone from start-up to a competitive player in the ultra-tough sports apparel business in just 10 years–is an example of this formula in action. It’s just damn good business. I know this to be true. I also understand a broader reality: Many leaders don’t buy it. Even if they agree in spirit, they reject the idea in practice. They think it is idealistic, naive, and impractical. So they don’t spend much time cultivating love at work.

Give Your Business a Competitive Advantage with this 4-Letter Word

Steve Farber

Under Armour–which has gone from start-up to a competitive player in the ultra-tough sports apparel business in just 10 years–is an example of this formula in action. It’s just damn good business. I know this to be true. I also understand a broader reality: Many leaders don’t buy it. Even if they agree in spirit, they reject the idea in practice. They think it is idealistic, naive, and impractical. So they don’t spend much time cultivating love at work.

Nike’s Co-founder on Innovation, Culture, and Succession

Harvard Business Review

Phil Knight, former chair and CEO of Nike, tells the story of starting the sports apparel and equipment giant after taking an entrepreneurship class at Stanford and teaming up with his former track coach, Bill Bowerman. Together (and with the help of a waffle iron) they changed how running shoes are designed and made. Knight discusses the company’s enduring culture of innovation, as well as the succession process that led to former runner and Nike insider Mark Parker becoming CEO.

5 Surprising Findings About How People Actually Buy Clothes and Shoes

Harvard Business Review

Apparel brands are investing especially heavily in online shopping capabilities and introducing interactive features that complement apps and websites. To get a clearer, more-complete picture, we studied actual decisions made by 1,500 apparel and footwear shoppers in the United States. Other apparel brands might seek to attract customers through differentiated and personalized products. HBR Staff/CSA Images/B&W Archive Collection/Getty Images.

Patagonia's "Buy Less" Campaign May Lead to More Revenue

Harvard Business Review

Patagonia has always behaved as a maverick company, and its concern for sustainability has led it to pursue a new initiative: it's now actively encouraging consumers to buy less of Patagonia's new apparel. To put its buy-less idea into action, Patagonia recently partnered with eBay to enable consumers to resell their used Patagonia apparel via the Common Threads Initiative within eBay. Sell More New Apparel. This post is part of the HBR Insight Center Growing the Top Line.

Dressing China

Harvard Business Review

All the world's apparel manufacturers and retailers have joined the race to clothe China. Unsurprisingly, apparel spending in China has been growing by a robust 16% per annum. In 2009, sales totaled $114 billion, making China the world's second-largest apparel market behind the $287 billion U.S. That's just a start, though; the Chinese spent only $96 a year on a per capita basis on apparel compared to the Americans' $935 and the Japanese's $891.

Interview With Ryan Holiday, Author Of, The Obstacle Is The Way

Eric Jacobson

Then Dov Charney at American Apparel, who taught me everything I know about business today. Ryan Holiday ''s newest book is, The Obstacle is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Adversity to Advantage.

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Can Lean Manufacturing Put an End to Sweatshops?

Harvard Business Review

To examine this possibility, I conducted research on recent developments in Nike Inc’s apparel supply chain with Jens Hainmueller of Stanford University and Richard M.

For Better Retail Promotions, Ask These Questions

Harvard Business Review

Recent analysis for a leading apparel retailer showed elasticity of customer response to promotional discounts was up to three times higher during holiday periods than during non-holiday periods and two times higher during weekends than on weekdays. John Rizzo/Getty Images.

How Consumer Brands Can Connect with Customers in a Changing Retail Landscape

Harvard Business Review

The accessories and apparel designer uses in-store radio-frequency identification to send clothing items to dressing rooms, helps customers choose different styles and sizes, and shows stock availability in stores and online. Retailer relationships can impose varying levels of constraint in D2C selling — less for apparel, perhaps, and more for CPG. But brick-and-mortar retail doors are closing, especially for apparel, as shoppers take their business online.

Sustainability 3.0: When Products' True Costs Are Covered

Harvard Business Review

The breakthrough comes when the largest companies in a sector decide to develop a sustainability index they will all live by, as is happening now in the apparel and footwear industry.

How Chinese Companies Disrupt Through Business Model Innovation

Harvard Business Review

The American textile and apparel industries, for example, will tell you that the evidence can be found in the blood on the floor — their blood, on what used to be their floor. Experts continue to debate whether Chinese businesses are truly disruptive.

Zappos and the Connection Between Structure and Strategy

Harvard Business Review

The size of the apparel market only in the U.S. Hsieh recognized that it would take further innovation to reach more customers in other segments of the vast apparel market.

The End of History or Retail 3.0?

Harvard Business Review

Take apparel: who would have thought ten years ago that Zappos could build an online business which prides itself on delivering not just low prices but an excellent customer experience, including service? Zappos's online-only retail format is so efficient that it can offer very competitive prices, free shipping and free returns of as many shoes as you like, at a stroke removing the biggest problem with online apparel shopping: "Does it fit?".

Smarter Retailing via (Un)conventional Thinking

Harvard Business Review

As I covered in my October HBR.org post, Patagonia's "Buy Less" Campaign May Lead to More Revenue , Patagonia has launched a campaign to encourage its consumers to buy only the apparel they need. The maverick retailer has also launched a new website for owners of Patagonia apparel to sell their used clothes to other consumers. Patagonia's actions further support the retailer's ability to increase prices, sell more apparel, and expand into new categories.

Marketers Need to Stop Focusing on Loyalty and Start Thinking About Relevance

Harvard Business Review

Instead of thinking of itself merely as a sports apparel manufacturer, the company has purposefully developed a “connected fitness” ecosystem. Under Armour intends to enable these platforms to grow independently, while reaping aggregated data that can inform and expand its apparel designs. Ultimately, the goal is to link customers to new services such as innovative start-ups that are developing embedded sensors and biometric readers for apparel. Topic Images Inc./Getty

Luxury Brands Can No Longer Ignore Sustainability

Harvard Business Review

If I asked you to picture the consumer luxury market, you might imagine jewels, sports cars, watches, premium drinks, high-end shoes and apparel, and so on.