I picked up Shoe Dog (Amazon link) after some folks on Instagram and Twitter had recommended it. The Ben Franklin book pick for March 2017 also came as a result of your feedback. You never let me down. Thanks so much! [Full Disclosure: As an affiliate, I receive compensation if you purchase through this link.]
The interesting thing is that, even though the Nike brand is so massive and such a part of our lexicon, I didn’t know much about the history of the company. I had no idea how the company started, so I was really curious to dive in.
If you’re looking for a biography, this isn’t it. Shoe Dog is an in-depth memoir about how Phil Knight, a runner from Oregon, took on behemoths Puma and Adidas head on with no real influence or money to his name. In the memoir, Knight documents his trips abroad to Japan where he learned about business world. That was so fascinating I felt like I was there with him.
It was also neat to learn that Knight didn’t have all the answers. He, like all of us, stumbled along the way quite a bit. But he persisted, and that’s what set him apart. Even when it seemed like his new company was going to go fail (which nearly happened several times), he figured out ways to keep going. I admire that greatly.
Another aspect of Knight’s story was that he maintained his loyalty to the people who helped him along the way. There were times that made me cringe a bit because he was asking a lot from his partners, but he was always honest and upfront with them. His authenticity and humble nature paired with his hardball business skills made this an extremely enjoyable memoir to read.
As for what I learned by reading Shoe Dog, I was truly inspired most of all. I didn’t learn anything new in regards to business tactics and strategies, but I didn’t want any of that out of this book. What I got out of it was tremendous inspiration to keep going. I got through the book in two days, so if you need a boost of energy and motivation for your work, Shoe Dog will definitely help with that!Buy the Book on Amazon