One of my friends recommended I read Phil Knight’s Shoe Dog, a memoir about how Nike came to be. At first, I didn’t feel like I could empathize with Phil Knight nor root for him. (IDK, he seemed too smart or something too good to be true.) But I read on because I was curious why my friend liked the book so much.
For the most part, I felt okay with Shoe Dog, but there were two good things that stood out as I read on:
- the (blind) passion the original employees had for running, or at least for the shoes; and
- the innovative spirit of Coach Bowerman and the adjustments he made to shoes to increase his athletes’ performance.
Overall the early days of Nike was an impressive story. It’s hard to believe that Nike was ever an underdog, but I think its original staff had big hearts and insane drive that were essential to the company’s eventual success. Not a bad read.