Do your employees have this much fun?
"Storytelling is the new marketing," Blake Mycoskie, the founder of TOMS told Fortune a few years ago.
Mycoskie's story is that on a trip to Argentina in 2006, he saw lots of kids without shoes and decided to start a new kind of sustainable company: For every pair of shoes that TOMS sells, it donates a pair to a child in need.
Here's a glimpse--taking you inside the TOMS annual "family trip" at California's Mammoth Mountain. Each year, employees split up by department, forge teams and compete in a creative costume contest. This year's assigned theme was music. So one team dressed up to create a human piano. Three teams performed versions of the Harlem Shake. Team BMLP--Blake Mycoskie and Laurent Potdevin, TOMS' president, partnering with folks in finance and facilities--poured their competitive juice into making a spoof of the "Thrift Shop" video that has amassed 330 million views on YouTube.
Blake and his crew won. Their video shows what the 440 employees of TOMS are really about: fun. By the way, Mycoskie is the bearded guy with the top hat.
I've never been big on New Year's resolutions, but a year ago, 15 minutes before 2009, I resolved to friend--a Charlie Rose fan--at a party in D.C.: "I'm going to DVR Charlie Rose every night."
Three weeks later, I found myself sitting next to the TV interviewer at a dinner in New York. I told Rose about my New Year's resolution. "So, are you doing it?" he asked.
"Uh, no, I MOREPatricia Sellers - Jan 4, 2010 1:38 PM ET
"Be the change you want to see in the world."
Blake Mycoskie, founder and Chief Shoe Giver of TOMS Shoes, says that this Mahatma Ghandi quote is his favorite--and he even sells shoes that display those words. I met Mycoskie last evening at Arianna Huffington's house in Los Angeles, and he so impressed me that I visited him this afternoon at TOMS headquarters in Santa Monica. Fascinating business: For every pair of MOREPatricia Sellers - Oct 11, 2008 1:48 AM ET
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