My Personal Outlook
If you want to understand the cultural structure that made lululemon a great company, I encourage you to read the book Legacy by James Kerr about New Zealand’s All Blacks rugby team – a team commonly known as one of the most successful sporting teams of all time. At times while reading about this team, I thought I was reading about lululemon. I even came across quotes from the very books that set the linguistic abstraction for lululemon.
I have a passion for mentoring people between the ages of 20 and 40. Certain concepts, when shared early enough in life, can help people to grow exponentially. (I wish some of the greatest learnings in my life had happened in my 20s rather than my 40s!) When I’m thanked for what I’ve provided to younger people’s lives, families, communities, and businesses, I respond that they too will be my age one day and will be thanked in the same way if they pay it forward.
My dream would be for the business model I envisioned for lululemon to become a template for new businesses. As I review the culture, purpose and operating model of successful companies built since 2010, I notice many similarities. Perhaps “elevating the world from mediocrity to greatness”, combined with six degrees of separation, has affected the world more than I know.
A recent podcast on “How I Built This” with Guy Raz on NPR and “Athleisure” on the Netflix series “Explained”, have helped me tell the lululemon story, but short clips don’t tell the whole story, since editing and bias can get key messaging wrong. I’ve found over the years that journalists can’t help but perpetuate the sensationalism of my 2013 Bloomberg interview.
I have taken the time to continue to be the best in the world at technical clothing. I am currently reading my third selection of 100 business/biography books to further hone my skills. I love going to Abundance 360 conferences set up by Peter Diamandis (X-Prize and Singularity University) to hear about the future of converging innovation.