Fast Company November 2018

Fast Company is the world’s leading progressive business media brand, with a unique editorial focus on innovation in technology, leadership, world changing ideas, and design. Written for, by, and about the most progressive business leaders, Fast Company inspires readers to think beyond traditional boundaries, lead conversations, and create the future of business.

United States
Mansueto Ventures LLC
6 Issues

in this issue

2 min
hitting refresh

For more than two decades, Fast Company has chronicled innovators, risk-takers, and companies that embrace change. This month, we’re following their example by unveiling a reinvigorated look, lively new content, and some unexpected stories—all aimed at making our print, online, and live journalism even more accessible and indispensable to you, our valued readers. We hope to win some new fans, too. Fast Company loves to cover technological advancements, but it’s the people fueling them who have always been the force behind our best-loved franchises, such as our annual list of the Most Creative People in Business or our yearly look at the Secrets of the Most Productive People. So it isn’t surprising that creative director Mike Schnaidt approached our reboot with a human-centered design ethos. He’s incorporated a broader, bolder color…

7 min
the tech worker revolt

When news broke in December 2016 that then president–elect Donald Trump would meet with some of the tech world’s most prominent CEOs—Apple’s Tim Cook, Alphabet’s Larry Page, Microsoft’s Satya Nadella, and Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, among them—many tech workers were furious. In an industry that draws talent and ideas from around the world, Trump’s anti-immigrant campaign promises were abhorrent, and just meeting with him seemed like a tacit endorsement of these views. His promises of mass deportations and a Muslim ban raised additional alarms for some: “If you’re going to target a sector of the population, it requires a database and collecting information on people,” says software engineer Ka-Ping Yee, who worked at the mobile money-transfer platform Wave during the election. “[Databases are] a necessary component of that particular evil.” And who…

1 min
the protest formation

1972 disturbed by sexualized uniforms and ad campaigns, flight attendants created a protest group called stewardesses for women’s rights (sfwr) and argued that their employers’ practices impeded their roles as safety officers. their high-profile activism eventually helped end this demeaning marketing. 1985 though hormel meat-packers in austin, minnesota, initially went on strike over 23% wage cuts, the effort quickly became a broader critique of the coziness between national unions and management and cities that grant employer concessions to secure new jobs. the effort failed, and hormel hired new workers at lower wages. 1995 jeffrey wigand, former head of r&d for the third-largest tobacco company, broke an nda to help expose how big tobacco misled the public about its products’ addictive properties and ignored research about cancer-causing ingredients. his advocacy helped lead to the $246 billion…

2 min
wave runner

new Zealand surfer paul Barron was laminating a board a decade ago when he accidentally spilled resin on his sweater. It gave him an idea: What if he built a surfboard shell out of wool? Traditional foam boards are typically housed in resin and fiberglass for structural integrity. But fiberglass can be harmful to workers and isn’t easily recyclable; board makers have long sought a greener alternative. This month, the Carlsbad, California, company Firewire Surfboards is releasing Barron’s WoolLight board—showcasing a technological advance that could change how other products are designed, from yachts to cars. 1 Why Wool Living in a country with six times as many sheep as people, Barron was familiar with the benefits of wool: It’s recyclable and biodegradable, and it doesn’t require much energy to manufacture. But wool…

6 min
blades of glory

as a cofounder of Warby Parker and, more recently, cofounder and co-CEo of Harry’s, Jeff Raider has starred in his own TV commercials, delivered keynote speeches at tech conferences, and persuaded investors to hand his companies hundreds of millions of dollars. Depending on the audience, he can wax lyrical, inspirational, hypothetical. But only recently did the 38-year-old face his R&D team, press a sticky strip of paper to his arm, and wax literal. “Harry’s products aren’t tested on animals,” he says, “only founders.” This month, Harry’s is introducing a line of hairremoving wax strips, along with razors, gels, and lotions—all for women. Sold under the new Flamingo brand, the line features minimalist, sophisticated design and packaging (first rule: no pink) and talks in a cheerful, no-nonsense way. “[We want to] be…

1 min
a hair-raising product

The blade Flamingo’s blade is made at Harry’s factory in Eisfeld, Germany, which the company purchased for $100 million four years ago. The style Rather than mimic the eye-catching look and colors of other women’s razors, which are designed to stand out on store shelves, the Flamingo comes in mint green, gray, and coral, with metal accents that are meant to blend into a modernlooking bathroom. The handle The Flamingo needs to navigate a number of hard-to-reach body parts from awkward angles. To help, the designers reshaped the handle and weighted it for an easier hold.…