December 27, 2012

The Best “Mindful” Business Book I’ve Read: “Raising the Bar,” by Gary Erickson.

Update! Waylon interviews Gary Erickson at Natural Products Expo West:

If elephant becomes a big, beautiful, beneficial force over the next 10 years, it’ll be because this business book re-charged me when I was out of juice. Read it.

But, first, via videos, here’s the short story.

The book’s worth the read, if you’re an entrepreneur who loves working hard and having fun to create a better life for yourself, and others, and our planet.

Growing elephant magazine, I needed investors, and barely said “no”—I just had to remain independent, and the advise of the many green and natural product tycoons here was “don’t do what we did”—don’t work with VC or angel investors. So, running into a wall (I wanted to continue to grow the magazine, but couldn’t 1) be cool with selling out or 2) grow sustainably without investment, I took a third option: I killed my business, gave away my car, gave up my staff and office, saw my home go into foreclosure, and took my business and went online. I’ve never looked back.

And now we’re back–a big, green, wellness, yoga, politics, arts, family, cycling media site that’s won all kinds of awards, is making good if modest money, has a great if small staff and is poised to become a dominant player in mindful media—and god knows, the world needs more independent, non-corporate-backed, fun, compassionate media.

I only wish I’d known about this book years ago.

Raising the Bar: Integrity and Passion in Life and Business

The Story of Clif Bar, Inc.

by Gary Erickson , Lois Lorentzen

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