After a nice Valentine dinner with my wife, my mind wandered back to business. Occupational hazard, I guess. I began thinking about earlier Valentine’s days, when I was just beginning my career and dinner out on this holiday was a special treat we saved for.
That led me to think about how I started in business, certain people who helped shape my career, and those in business I admire today.
One of my present idols is Phil Knight who, with Bill Bowerman, founded Nike in 1978. By 1980 — a mere two years — Nike attained a 50% market share in the U.S. athletic shoe market. According to Phil Knight, the company’s growth was due largely to “word-of-foot.” Knight always had a way with words.
In 1988, Knight had the common sense to approve the iconic slogan “Just Do It”, which was chosen by Advertising Age as one of the top five ad slogans of the 20th century and enshrined in the Smithsonian Institution. Pretty impressive for a company that’s less than half a century old. And that Swoosh! Recognized the world over.