Stuff We Believe In – Howies philosophy for business…

1 02 2010

You can also get an audio version of this blogpost here: – Listen!

Dave Hieatt - Co-founder of Howies | photo courtesy of Mike Lusmore see: http://www.mikelusmore.com

Being Authentic means having a greater purpose than making money. This is what drove Dave Hieatt, founder of Howies clothing, to give up a career in advertising and set up in business doing something he was passionate about. His desire? To make people think about the world we live in. Profits come second – or should that be third, after mountain-biking

I purchased a tee shirt from Howies recently and found a tag which tells customers about their business – I like the  statement below which convinced me to buy more of their products in future – I really empathise with these values :-

Stuff We Believe In…

  • We believe in making stuff that lasts.
  • We believe in good old fashioned service.
  • We believe in sport. We believe in play. We believe in having fun.
  • We believe the environment needs more friends.
  • We believe in making people think.
  • We believe the glass is always half-full.
  • We believe higher quality means lower impact.
  • And we believe tea should always be made in a pot.

It seems to be working – the company grows from strength to strength – 90% of their business is done via their website and catalogue and with minimal advertising – customers keep coming back, and referring family and friends – so Howies must be doing something right.

What do you believe in? Are you doing something that you are truly passionate about? Is the company you work for as Authentic as Howies? If not then why not? You can always talk to me about how myself and my colleagues from Authenticis can help transform your work into something truly motivational.

James Rock – Cultivar Consulting

For more about Howies visit their website : Howies

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Being an Authentic Business

10 12 2009

Being an Authentic Business...

Do you know what an Authentic Business is? Have you, like me, found that this is a term increasingly being used in the aftermath of the banking crisis?

I wondered what “Authentic” meant in the context of business and resolved to research it in more detail. I found that there is an increasingly large body of reference work related to Authenticity – and its popularity stems from a return to “real” values and behaviours that people want to see in companies they do business with.

Perhaps the best definition I found was in a book by Neil Crofts, who describes the key principles as: –

  • A purpose beyond profit
  • A purpose that is profoundly held
  • A purpose that is socially and/or environmentally positive
  • Integrity between communication and action
  • Respect for others
  • Sensibility to exploitation of resources and customers
  • A distinct and unique business personality

You can get Neil’s book here:-

Authentic Business – How to create and run your perfect business

You can see Neil talking about Authentic Business in this short video: –



Businesses that operate by these principles seem to be thriving, even through the economic downturn. They are benefiting hugely from growth generated by customers who become fans, keep returning to buy again, and who become brand ambassadors – happy and keen to tell their family, friends and networks about these favourite suppliers. In todays world of word-of-mouth marketing via social media this means that they gain customers without huge marketing expense.

Do you know any of these Authentic Businesses? What do they do that inspires you to keep returning as a customer? How do you tell your family and friends about them? Please let me know by responding to this post so that I can include them in my future research..

many thanks

James Rock

http://www.cultivar.co.uk