Fast Company September 2017

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

3 min
trust your feelings, now more than e ver

Business isn’t always about numbers. Actually, it rarely is. It’s about people, and emotion. What about the dollars? The cash flow? The share price? Don’t kid yourself. Those are the by-products, the results. Anyone who is truly sophisticated about business recognizes this essential truth. You can throw a lot of money around. Say you’re Pepsi and you’re trying to prove your relevance to a new generation that isn’t yet a Pepsi generation. You hire Kendall Jenner and create a TV commercial that tries to connect drinking soda with timely issues like multiculturalism and police relations. And . . . it fails, miserably. It feels forced. It falls flat. Or you can take a different kind of risk. You can open up a Starbucks in ravaged and underserved Ferguson, Missouri. You can expose…

2 min
from i tunes to e-tai

Ian Rogers Chief digital officer, LVMH Growing up in Goshen, Indiana, Ian Rogers was far more excited about skateboarding, punk rock, and hip-hop than haute couture, and his fashion sense ran toward baggy Carhartt and Dickies items purchased from Walmart. “We were literally dressed like janitors,” he recalls. These days Rogers operates in a decidedly higher-end milieu. In 2015, luxury-goods conglomerate LVMH—which owns Givenchy, Bulgari, and Marc Jacobs, among many others—hired him to be the company’s first chief digital officer. A former roadie for the Beastie Boys, Rogers had spent more than two decades in the music industry, including stints as CEO of Beats Music and senior director of Apple Music, where he oversaw iTunes Radio. At LVMH, Rogers is tapping skills he learned while navigating the music business’s turbulent digital shift. “Retail…

4 min
hasbro ponies up

Hasbro When My Little Pony: The Movie hits theaters this October with characters voiced by Kristin Chenoweth and Taye Diggs, two things will almost certainly happen: Pastel ponies will remind us that friendship is magic, and Hasbro will reap the rewards. The toy company isn’t new to filmmaking; the Transformers franchise has earned $3.8 billion and helped boost sales in Hasbro’s boy category by 20% in 2014, when Age of Extinction came out. But My Little Pony is the first big animated release from Hasbro’s own production studio, Allspark. The film, which will tap into the audience Hasbro has cultivated for the ponies, illustrates the company’s increasing focus on building robust franchises in-house. “As we tell stories around a [toy] brand,” says CEO Brian Goldner, “we activate them across our entire blueprint.”…

1 min
a new, at-home vision test is a feat for the eyes

Warby Parker The ultimate direct-to-consumer brand isn’t content just to sell you a pair of glasses. It’s preparing to own the entire eyewear space. In May, Warby Parker launched a Prescription Check app that enables users to complete virtual eye exams at home—no doctor visit required. This comes a few months after the company opened its first optical lab, in Sloatsburg, New York, where it cuts lenses to fit its frames, bringing some of the manufacturing inhouse. “Building this technology and opening the lab allows customers to stay within the Warby Parker environment,” says cofounder and co-CEO Dave Gilboa. Warby Parker initially launched the Prescription Check app—which sends results to an eye doctor who can only issue new prescriptions if the user’s vision hasn’t changed—in five states, including New York and California.…

2 min
the recommender

Buck Mason men’s shirts From $28 “Buck Mason’s T-shirts are the only ones I wear—they’re classic, comfortable, and reasonably priced. Plus, they’re made in the U.S. and sewn in Los Angeles.” Ryan Williams Cofounder and president, Jopwell Jiva-Apoha oils From $60 “This woman-owned company’s handcrafted oils are beautiful and aromatic. Each one has its own healing property, like calming or awakening.” Bertha González Nieves Cofounder and CEO, Casa Dragones Tequila Studio Endo’s Ditri light fixture $2,500 “The modern, metal light fixture makes a statement with its unique style, high-quality craftsmanship, and glow.” Eric Silverman Founder, Silverman Real Estate Hedley & Bennett aprons From $58 “I love cooking, and I’ve always wanted something stylish yet functional to wear in the kitchen. Enter Hedley & Bennett’s durable, handmade aprons. They even make adorable kid sizes, so my 1-year-old son can help me cook.” Daina Trout Cofounder and CEO, Health-Ade Kombucha Lofoten Islands,…

8 min
uber’s driving lessons

Not long after Uber cofounder Travis Kalanick was forced to step down as CEO following a spate of scandals at his ride-hailing company, one influential venture capitalist tried to convince me that there were no larger lessons to be learned from the debacle. Uber, explained this VC, who would only speak on the condition of anonymity, was not emblematic of some “rottenness” at the heart of Silicon Valley. Rather, Kalanick’s tenure at Uber was simply an “anomaly.” Across the tech industry, startup founders, employees, and investors have been grappling with how to interpret Kalanick’s stunning rise and fall. Having built Uber into a disruptive force, a global service with more than 14,000 employees in 600-plus cities, and the highest-valued startup in history (approximately $70 billion)—all in just eight years—Kalanick seemed to…