Stories and Strategies from Real Life: 1/15/16

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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 Chipotle, Whole Foods, Joy Global, U-Bee-Well, and Finish Line.

From Daniel Gross: Chipotle’s Indigestion

“When a Chipotle restaurant opened in a strip mall in my town last summer, there were lines out the door. A signifier of urban sophistication had arrived in Fairfield County, Connecticut, no less important than the SoulCycle that opened in an adjacent storefront.”

From David Merrefield: Whole Foods’ Ham Handed Moves

“In an unusual turn of events, the sands are shifting under Whole Foods Markets—and now it’s in trouble.”

From Rick Barrett: Joy Global mining through a slump

“From the company headquarters in Milwaukee, Joy Global Inc. executives can monitor an underground mining machine operating on the other side of the world, and they have a clear view of the slump that has engulfed their industry for nearly four years.”

From Diane Mastrull: Kitchen Therapy

“Perhaps no one is more surprised that Barbara Gettes is building a business than Gettes herself.”

From Sarah Halzack: Why Finish Line is closing 150 stores even though ‘athleisure’ is booming

“We’re in a moment when women are wearing yoga pants to the office, men are shaking up their casual uniforms with jogger pants, and style snobs are clomping around Fashion Week not in high heels, but in sneakers. Meanwhile, performance apparel brands such as Nike and Under Armour have been delivering explosive sales growth. So if athletic apparel is so hot, why has Finish Line announced this week that it is closing 150 of its 617 stores?

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