Shoe Dog Book Review
This past week I had the pleasure of reading Shoe Dog: A Memoir By The Creator of Nike, and it was amazing to say the least. The book is centered around one of the world's most influencial business executives and CEO's Phil Knight and his beloved wife Penny, fresh out of business school and unwilling to work for someone else for the rest of his life borrows $50 from his father, and launched a company that would change the shoe industry forever.
The journey for Nike begins with Knight having an epiphany at only 24 years old while backpacking through Asia and Africa, pondering where his life was headed decided that the harder and more unconventional path was the way for him. Instead of working for a big corporation like all of his friends back home in Oregon he decided he would create something all of his own and that was different from everyone else.
As a young man Knight started selling imported Japanese shoes from the trunk of his Plymouth Valiant and in 1964 his first year of business he grossed eight-thousand dollars, with the help of his business partner Bill Bowerman over the years built an empire that today the annual sales top over $30 Billion. In this age of start ups and ambituous young entrepreneurs Nike is the gold standard with a logo that today means more than a logo, It's a symbol of pride and greatness among many corners of the world.
Detailing the countless adventures and terrifying risks Knight has taken on the way, all of the crushing blows, the ruthless competitors from Japan along with the countless people and bankers that said that this "crazy idea" of theirs would never work. Knight created a dynamic and different take on what it took to create a brand that we all know and love today.
I've never knew the true history of Nike, but after reading this book I not only learnt about the company but about the mysterious man behind the "Swoosh" and his band of misfits in this unfiltered, funny and most engaging pieces of work i've read in a very long time.
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