Lush Cosmetics: Creating a Culture of Yes


(ambient piano music) (monorail passing) – Our business’s main
function is invention, innovation, and keeping an eye on what’s happening in the world. We do take a stand on issues and we like to be able
to just move quickly to support an issue that we believe in. A lot of times, that means that everybody has to be ready to jump
on something immediately. (ambient music) A lot of businesses will actually work so far in advance that Christmas of 2020 is already complete, whereas our founders and our inventors are
just starting to look at what we might be doing
for Christmas of 2019. I believe that the reason why our staff is so willing and able to
jump on short timelines when they need to happen is that they’re very
passionate about the brand and very passionate about the company. You need to develop a business that people feel like they
can make a difference, that their voices are heard. Anyone can make suggestions
to any department and it’s not weird. There’s no lines in the sand where you can’t go and give a suggestion to the copy team and you work on the
floor in manufacturing. This is a business full of opportunity and personal development. When the people working in the business can see that the business
cares about them, they’re more willing and
able to go the extra mile to pull off the impossible. (mid-tempo drum beat) Lush’s roots come from
a mail-order business in the ’80s called Cosmetics To Go. There was a very strong
following of that brand. One thing led to another; the business unfortunately went under. At the time, we’d employed so many people from our community, and
all of their friends had lost their jobs. It was a year later when they decided to get back together and
to give it another shot. They got in touch with
their old loyal customers and had a contest to name the brand. That’s where the name Lush came from. They opened their first shop in Poole, UK, which is a little seaside town in the south in Dorset. That store is still there and they still invent products upstairs where that first massage bar was made. A very important part of the business from that early day was employ people; giving jobs to people and not mechanizing. That people first mentality really comes from back then. It was extremely important to our founders that people be given work. We’ve always just had this culture of employing people, not machines. We wanna make our moms proud. We have what we call the
We Believe statement. We believe in happy
people making happy soap, is a very core value for us. If our people are happy,
our product is happy. (mid-tempo music) Something that’s really important to us is bringing people up
through the business. Our owner in North America
just loves to be able to see somebody like Davy
who gave the factory tour, who started in distribution
as a order picker, who then moved into the newly-formed internal communications team and is now a project manager for our brand part of the business. Or myself, I started as a buyer. We weren’t exactly sure
how launches worked in our business, and there wasn’t anybody dedicated to project managing that. I saw an opportunity and I just started working on it. Eventually that became my full-time job. (ambient music) The easiest way that I’ve found for a business to get buy-in on a project or for you to get buy-in on a project is to ensure that your team or the teams within the
business feel heard, valued, that they feel
like they can come forward with feedback, and that they’re going to be listened to. You don’t necessarily have to take the feedback and run with it, but you definitely should acknowledge it. People have good ideas, so it is really good to hear them. From a business perspective, if you want to really get
that buy-in from your staff, just make sure that
you’re building a brand that your employees can connect with on an emotional level; they feel good about coming
to work in the morning and they’re gonna be
excited to just wake up and do what needs to be done. (ambient music)

About the Author: Earl Hamill

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