Some of the best learning happens when you read stories about real people and real companies. Read them for ideas, for lessons, and inspiration. This week’s stories and strategies from real life are about Stone Brewing, Costco, Eric Scott Leathers, Procter & Gamble, and Apple.
“When Greg Koch and Steve Wagner founded Stone Brewing, they could have ended up like thousands of start-up failures. They could have launched a me-too product and tried to compete head to head with the industry leaders.”
Wally’s Comment: I cannot tell a lie. This brewery makes one of my favorite ales, Arrogant Bastard.
“The meat issue came up a few months ago after another disappointing result. The response from Costco Chief Financial Officer Richard Galanti was the same today as it was then: Traffic and long-term loyalty trump reactive price hikes. ‘We’re going to do what’s right each day on pricing, irrespective of how it’s going to be on margins that day,’ he said on a conference call this morning.”
“When Tony Spielberg began looking for a domestic manufacturer to make a line of high-end men’s duffel bags and briefcases, he didn’t have many options. That search, though, ended up taking him to a somewhat unexpected place: Eric Scott, a small factory in Ste. Genevieve that for years has been quietly making checkbook covers and motorcycle saddle bags.”
“Procter & Gamble’s next big beauty business may be underneath everyone’s nose. The Cincinnati-based consumer products giant has become a world player in high-end perfumes mostly behind the combined sales of three top-tier brands not usually associated with P&G: Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci and Hugo Boss.”
“Ever since Tim Cook took over as CEO of Apple in August 2011, he has faced pressure to replicate the leadership of late founder Steve Jobs in both product innovation and financial profitability. Now Cook is under renewed scrutiny: A new book on Apple due for release on March 18 explores the challenges he faces. Meanwhile, a report earlier this week from research firm Gartner showed that Apple has lost significant share in the tablet market.”