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Business Plan C, Responsible Capitalism: The Yvon Chouinard Model

I have dreamed about what it would be like to work for the company Patagonia. I imagine that the work environment is buzzing with the same love of life, innovation and adventure that runs in the veins of it’s founder Yvon Chouinard. Many others went beyond dreaming and applied. In the not so distant past Patagonia was receiving approximately 900 applicants for each job opening. These people were drawn by two factors

A. Yvon Chouinard, the fascinating, unconventional, challenging person, legendary outdoor sportsman, and constant innovator


B. Yvon Chouinard’s business model which shows his deep respect for people and the earth

Here are some facets of the Chouinard Business Model

1. earth first

2. constant innovation

2. no toxins released into rivers

3. no nervous breakdowns

4. no chasing endless, unsustainable growth

5. no disposable crap that people don’t need

6. onsite day care with an annex area for newborns

7. maternity and paternity leave and

8. flextime

9. least impact, recycled and recyleable products

10. evironmental assessment of all materials

11. toxic assessment of all materials

12. bad for earth? make it better

13. bad for people? make it better

14. send item back when worn out

15. marketing materials 100% recycled

16. ground or sea shipping suggested

17. tax ourselves & donate to grass roots organizations

18. nothing that involves clear-cutting forests

19. nothing that involves polluting land or oceans

20. nothing that involves bulldozing wetlands

21. no pasty faced corpse employees

22. nothing involving genetically modified foods or over fishing

23. employees that know about sustainability

24. highest quality products

25. Surf up? employees out surfing!

26. Child sick? employee at home with child

27. barefoot employees!

28. cavorting pets!

29. organic chef

30. no suits

31. Enjoy life! Play!

Chouinard designed a business model that serves to protect what he loves most and has successfully blazed the way for others to do the same. I know I am not alone when I say that he is one of my all time heros.


About Heather

My name is Heather Ferris. I am the founder and creator of Nurture Nature Project! I believe together we can re-imagine the future and re-create systems to support the sustainable regeneration of healthy life on our planet. Listening to your own heart and living from your inner truth is the first step to building a better world. Every person has something important to offer.


2 thoughts on “Business Plan C, Responsible Capitalism: The Yvon Chouinard Model

  1. Just wanted to say “Nice post”. : ) And, if only all business starters from here could base their businesses on this model! What a happy people we would be! Not to mention productive and profitable, in a good way. (If profit is good?)

    Posted by Begonia | February 18, 2009, 11:41 am
    • Thanks for your feedback! Yes, if only all would set such standards. (yes, responsible capitalism and fair profit!) Hopefully there will be many more strong, determined business leaders who see the benefit.

      Posted by Heather | February 18, 2009, 7:43 pm

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