A couple words on Patagonia

            I recently returned from a Global Sales Meeting at the headquarters of Patagonia in Ventura California.  Not to shoot smoke up your ass and talk about what an amazing company it is and how much better it is than the majority of other companies, but it truly is.  The talk is the walk.  I found it absolutely incredible that they, in collaboration with Yulex (quite possibly one of the better companies, look them up http://www.yulex.com/about/), developed a wetsuit that is  60 percent plant based, keeps you warmer then neoprene and dries faster.  Yeah... it's real!  They are hoping to develop the product to where it is 100% plant based.  Not only that, but they are only going to hold onto the proprietary formula rights for 1year, at which point they will give that technology to the world, competitors included.  To me, this shows true leadership with the intention to affect the world positively, not strictly for their own financial gain.  So, how come other companies can't do that?  Or don't do that?  Could it be because Patagonia is still owned privately?  Uh... DUH.  Yvon has no one to answer to and no one to tell him that it's a bad idea for the business.  The thing is... He knows that!  But he also knows this product is better for the environment and for the people of this world who inhabit it.  I guess I just have to say that it's relieving to know that some decisions in this world on a larger scale aren't based on greed alone.

         I spoke to the man in charge for a bit at this meeting during one of the breakouts.  I caught him on the way downstairs and said, hey Yvon I'm Pep, a new addition to your ambassador program, not really thinking he'd know who I was, but sure enough, he says, oh yeah you had some good things to say.  After about 10 minutes of friendly talk about this and that I realized I was probably taking some of his valuable time so I made that remark.  He just said oh no I don't really have much going on, so we continued to talk fishing and Patagonia's new food initiative.  A half hour later a Rep from Jackson came up to Yvon with a Tenkara Fly Fishing enthusiast who was interested in the difference between the Tenkara Flies and traditional flies, so Yvon politely explained and then proceeded to take out a box of said flies from his pocket from his personal stash I presume and opened the box to show.  He gave us a lesson and then just told the guy to take them and have his local fly shop duplicate them.  That's when I realized why Yvon has done so well.  He's not afraid to give and share his knowledge to the world without expecting anything in return.  He may be extremely wealthy but I know he tied the flies himself, so the gesture had nothing to do with money.  He knew by giving those flies, he had given a gift that could potentially give the guy the same amount of happiness that they had brought him.  I guess it goes without saying that I admire the man and hope he continues to do great things in this world!