Business As Unusual..

4 10 2007

‘Business As Unusual’ charts The Journey of the Anita Roddick And The Body Shop.. I read this book and written a review about it two years back and thinking about it still gives me goosebumps. Never has I ever been exposed to such a radical business leader. Though she has passed away from this world, the fire she has ignited would stay alive forever. Telegraph got it right when it called her ‘a great heart in a tiny frame’. One of her interviews during her last days can be found here.

‘Business As Unusual’ is written by the founder of The Body Shop, Anita Roddick. The book is quite different and unique in its own way be it the way of presentation of the print or the power of expression of the words. The book describes Anita’s joy of the journey in the business world, where she wants to nurture “A Revolution in Kindness”. She describes how she has managed to keep an intimate part of herself alive in a business gone global. Despite the constraints of a Global Company, she always tried to to reinvent herself, tried to find new ways to push the limits of the business, to change its language, to make it a force for positive change. That’s why the title- Business as Unusual.

She describes her experiences of being an entrepreneur and how she is guided by passion and instinct to run the global business. Being a nomadic soul, how she has capitalized on the opportunities and how she is passionate about her ideas. She says that entrepreneurs are basically crazy. They see and feel things which others don’t. She talks about vision, creativity, energy, pathological optimism and the ability to put ideas into action as her core strengths, of course with a touch of craziness.

Born into an Italian immigrant family which is settled England, Anita has a hands on experience in working in a cafe which is run by her parents. Her work at United Nations for two years and her experience of community life at Kibbutz, Israel arouse her interest in community life. Being Married to Gordon Roddick and after running a hotel and restaurant for three years, Anita thought of settling down. She wanted to start a shop selling skincare products because she was irritated by the cosmetics industry and their pandering to unfulfilled desires. She says that irritation is a great source of energy and creativity.

Her endorsement of Ruby Campaign, her community work, her views about community as company where people work for common good and her call for responsibility revolution is truly commendable. She also stresses on communication as the key for any global business and her efforts in keeping the channels of communication open in The Body Shop. She also stresses on her community work, her campaigning for the Ogoni cause, her deals with the indigenous communities.

Reading the book, I didn’t feel that The Body Shop is a separate entity from Anita. It runs in her blood and she considers it as her child and passion, that’s how she maintained her integrity and passion in the soulless business world by holding to the indigenous way, listening to her heart and guided by passion. Its about empowering employees and continuous experimentation.. More than that, its about a burning pathological need for recreating herself in the corporate world. Anita Roddick comes out as a Maverick, Fighter Spirit and a Maniac who stands for what she believes!



One response

18 01 2007

This post, however off-topic it may be, is about Internet freedom. \”Network Neutrality\” — the First Amendment of the Internet — ensures that the public can view the smallest blog just as easily as the largest corporate Web site by preventing Internet companies like AT&T from rigging the playing field for only the highest-paying sites.

But Internet providers like AT&T, Verizon and Comcast are spending millions of dollars lobbying Congress to gut Net Neutrality. If Congress doesn\’t take action now to implement meaningful Net Neutrality provisions, the future of the Internet is at risk.

In the end game, only large companies will afford domains if the communications monopolies have their way with this. This of course isnt new news, but its coming to a head and blogs like this one will be a ghosttown unless all of us figure it our pretty darn quick. I wont post any links, but advise that if you value the internet, and blogs likw this one, that you search Google for \”Network Neutrality\” and educate yourself on this issue as it effects all of us.

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