Lead With We Podcast

LEAD WITH WE, with host Simon Mainwaring, is the podcast that reveals how brands survive in a crisis, thrive in a fast-changing market, and accelerate growth in a challenging future.

Discover how the world’s top companies and entrepreneurs are driving growth and impact that employees and customers now demand. What worked, what didn’t and what you need to do to get everyone to build your business.

Whether you’re a start-up, high growth company or large corporation, you’ll learn how to build your reputation, increase employee productivity, and inspire customers to promote your brand. Engaging, entertaining and actionable, this is your chance to listen in and learn a lot about how business does well and does good.

SIMON MAINWARING

Simon Mainwaring is a brand futurist, global keynote speaker, and bestselling author. He is best known as the author of We First: How Brands and Consumers Use Social Media to Build a Better World and the Founder and CEO of We First, a strategic consultancy that works with brands to define their business strategy, company culture, and brand communications.

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Latest Episodes

Bryce Fluellen, Executive Director, Social Equity Franchise Everytable: Change Is Bigger Than You

SEASON 3, EPISODE 26 | MAY 17, 2022

Bryce Fluellen is the Executive Director of Social Equity Franchise at Everytable. They are redefining the fast-food landscape by selling nutritious, fresh, made-from-scratch food at fast-food prices in underserved communities. To that end, they’re reducing meal prices to meet the minimum income of each community. Bryce is a master chef who has worked with nationwide restaurants to drive systemic change to benefit underserved populations and communities. In this conversation, he shares how his passion for education and healthy eating serves the company’s rapid growth and the democratization of healthy, affordable food where it’s needed most.

Adam Grogan, President at Greenleaf Foods: The Future of Protein Is Now

SEASON 3, EPISODE 25 | MAY 3, 2022

Adam Grogan is the President of Greenleaf Foods, a portfolio of leading plant-based protein brands including Lightlife Foods and Field Roast that are transforming the future of food. Greenleaf Foods, SPC is a wholly-owned, independent subsidiary of Maple Leaf Foods Inc, a one hundred year old iconic brand headquartered in Toronto, Canada. Adam leads Greenleaf’s strategic direction, financial performance, innovation, customer development and distribution. In this episode, he shares how Greenleaf plans to become the world’s most sustainable plant-based protein company on earth, how and why consumer purchasing habits are changing, and how to anticipate and capture emerging marketplace opportunities to accelerate business growth and a regenerative future.

Stacey Tank, Chief Transformation Officer, Heineken: Serving A Regenerative Future

SEASON 3, EPISODE 24 | APRIL 26, 2022

Stacey Tank is the Chief Transformation Officer at Heineken, the world’s most international brewer, where she oversees the company’s new growth strategy, ‘EverGreen’ and its latest sustainability and ESG vision, Brew a Better World 2030. She reveals how a complex, global enterprise reengineers its business and reimagines the role of its brands to not only serve moments of celebration that bring people together, but also a regenerative future that benefits all.

Seth Goldman, Co-Founder and Chief Change Agent of Eat the Change: Creating The Future of Food

SEASON 3, EPISODE 23 | APRIL 19, 2022

Seth Goldman is the, Co-Founder and Chief Change Agent of Eat the Change which is a food company focusing on sustainable and plant-based ingredients to empower us to, “eat the change you wish to see in the world.”

Before co-founding, Eat The Change Seth was the Founder of Honest Tea the multi-million organic tea company that was acquired by Coca-Cola in 2011 and is Chair of the board of Beyond Meat the plant-based meat substitutes company. In this conversation, Seth talks about why he is passionate about the future of food, and his optimism about good and sustainable food.

Michele Mosa, Director of Corporate Citizenship at Samsung Electronics America: Educating The Future

SEASON 3, EPISODE 22 | APRIL 12, 2022

Michele Mosa is the Director of Corporate Citizenship at Samsung Electronics America. In her role, Michele guides their transformative initiatives, including Samsung’s annual ‘Solve For Tomorrow’ Contest. The contest is open to all public school students and encourages them to build solutions and address the most pressing issues impacting society. Michele reveals why it is so critical for her company to support public teachers, help mentor the innovators of tomorrow, and build a brighter future – together. 

Saskia van Gendt, Head of Sustainability at Rothy’s: Why Circular is now in fashion.

SEASON 3, EPISODE 21 | APRIL 5, 2022

Saskia van Gendt is an environmental scientist and the first Head of Sustainability at Rothy’s, the San Francisco-based, direct-to-consumer fashion company. Rothy’s items are made from 100% recycled plastic water bottles and post-consumer recycled materials. Saskia oversees their initiatives to use more reusable materials, design products that eliminate waste, and advance their goal of making the brand – and fashion industry at large – ever more circular to better serve our planet and future.

 

Wes Carter, President, Atlantic Packaging: On Empowering Purposeful Packaging

SEASON 3, EPISODE 20 | MARCH 29, 2022

Wes Carter is the President of Atlantic Packaging, the largest, private packaging company in the U.S. which has been operating for 75 years. As a third generation business owner, he is on a mission to make packaging smarter and sustainable. In this episode, we discuss the moral obligation he feels for packaging companies to care about environmental issues, inspire greater responsibility in customers, and innovate to better serve our future. He reveals the power of collaboration between competitors, partners, and policy makers to realize a new and transformative vision for sustainable packaging at a time it’s urgently needed.

Kathrin Belliveau, Chief Purpose Officer, Hasbro: Leading with Purpose and Play

SEASON 3, EPISODE 19 | MARCH 22, 2022

Since 1923 Hasbro has delighted generations with beloved toys, games and brands that are synonymous with childhood. Kathrin Belliveau is the first Executive Vice President and Chief Purpose Officer of the self-described “global play and entertainment company,” where she is charged with bringing their purpose to life in ways that make the world a better place for children, fans, and families. In this episode, Kathrin talks about why it’s critical for companies in all sectors to embrace sustainability and lead with purpose to drive growth, relevance and impact. From innovative packaging to building a purposeful culture, Kathrin explains the strategies Hasbro has used to be recognized as one of “the World’s Most Ethical Companies” eleven years in a row. 

Public Sector Experience Can Lead to Private Sector Success with Bayer’s Daniella Foster

SEASON 3, EPISODE 18 | MARCH 15, 2022

Bayer is one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world – generating $48.90 billion in revenue in 2021. At the helm of Public Affairs, Science and Sustainability for Bayer’s Consumer Health Division is Daniella Foster. Daniella joined Bayer in 2019 with a powerful vision for how consumer engagement and cross-sector collaboration can transform millions of lives including those in underserved communities around the world. With aggressive but attainable goals to be climate neutral by 2030 and net-zero by 2050, Daniella reveals how Bayer meets these targets while solving for complex global challenges.

In this conversation, Daniella candidly shares how her experience at the State Department is helping her accomplish big things at Bayer. She also talks about how she is using storytelling to educate consumers to live healthier and longer.

Creating Simple Solutions with Artistic Principals with WeTransfer’s Damian Bradfield

SEASON 3, EPISODE 17 | MARCH 8, 2022

Damian Bradfield is the Co-Founder & Chief Creative Officer at WeTransfer, the leading cloud-based content-sharing platform that is in the business of making tools to shape and move ideas for creatives globally. While best known as a service to easily transfer large files to colleagues and loved ones, WeTransfer is a powerful storytelling company on a mission to make the internet more open and democratic. In my chat with Damian, we discuss how WeTransfer came to be, how it is creating impact through its editorial platform WePresent, and how a tech company builds and sustains critical trust at a time when others struggle.

Allmade’s Ryan Moor: How Sustainable Apparel Becomes Good Business

SEASON 3, EPISODE 16 | MARCH 1, 2022

It started with a punk-rock band in Seattle in the 90’s and a kid who had a knack for screen printing t-shirts from his bedroom. That entrepreneurial start led to the launch of ScreenPrinting.com in 2004 which generated $8 million in revenues in under three years. As his business grew so did Ryan, as a successful business owner and social change agent. Through Allmade he is now reimagining what eco-friendly, socially conscious apparel and printing looks like and challenging the biggest brands in the world to buy more responsibly, to make sure everyone in the supply chain is fairly paid fairly, and to ensure the clothing we wear each day gives back to those in greatest need.

Patagonia’s Rick Ridgeway: On A Mission to Save Our Home Planet

SEASON 3, EPISODE 15 | FEBRUARY 22, 2022

Patagonia is an outdoor apparel company based in Ventura, California with a mission to save our home planet. It was founded in 1976 by Yvon Chouinard and was the first B-Corporation in the state. Rick was Vice President of Environmental Initiatives and Special Media Projects for Patagonia for 15 years during which he founded the Sustainable Apparel Coalition. In addition to his accomplishments at Patagonia, Rick is recognized as one of the world’s foremost mountaineers. Along with Yvon and another friend, they were the first Americans to summit K2. He has done other significant climbs and explorations on all continents.

In this conversation, Rick discusses why and how Patagonia is fulfilling their mission to save our home planet. He also talks about how Patagonia walks the walk when it comes to sustainability and how it measures its financial performance with the overall health of the planet. 

Rick is also the author of 6 books. His latest book, “Life Lived Wild: Adventures at the Edge of the Map” is a memoir that recounts some of his boldest expeditions. Rick estimates that he has spent over five years of his life sleeping in tents in distant locations around the globe, “Life Lived Wild” offers some insights to those adventures including his ascent of K2 to exploring a remote area of Tibet that no outsider had ever seen.

Unilever’s Jostein Solheim: Leading the Way in Diversity and Sustainability

SEASON 3, EPISODE 14 | FEBRUARY 15, 2022

Unilever is a purpose-led global company that owns over four hundred brands we use every day. Its purpose is to make sustainable living commonplace by empowering consumers to make responsible choices. In this episode, I have a great conversation with Unilever’s CEO of Health & Wellness, Jostein Solheim, about the new division he is leading for Unilever and his re-radicalizing of Ben & Jerry’s, the activist ice-cream brand he led for 8 years.

AppHarvest’s Jonatah Webb: Growing The Future

SEASON 3, EPISODE 13 | FEBRUARY 8, 2022

AppHarvest is a high-tech, controlled-environment agriculture company based in Morehead, Kentucky committed to solving the growing food crisis. They are a B-Corp on a mission to combine conventional agriculture techniques with today’s cutting edge technologies to dramatically increase crop yield using a fraction of the natural resources. Jonathan Webb is its Founder & CEO who shares why he decided to bring this project to his home state, why now is the time to act now on sustainable agriculture solutions and how we get it done together. 

Anheuser-Busch InBev’s Michel Doukeris: Planning For A Future With More Cheers

SEASON 3, EPISODE 12 | FEBRUARY 1, 2022

Anheuser-Busch InBev is the world’s largest beer brewer by both volume and revenue, whose portfolio includes more than 400 beer brands sold in over 150 countries. Under the leadership of its new CEO, Michel Doukeris, the industry-leading enterprise is revitalizing its brand with a new purpose and sustainability goals to drive future growth and impact. In this episode, I speak with Michel about his leadership philosophy and his ambitious 100-year plan. This roadmap hinges on the company’s commitment to “Dream Big To Create A Future With More Cheers” and Michel shares his advice for business leaders and entrepreneurs about how to navigate an ever-changing and challenging future.

Eddie Bauer’s Kristen Elliott: Sustainability as a Long Term Investment

SEASON 3, EPISODE 11 | DECEMBER 7, 2021

Eddie Bauer recently celebrated 100 years in business, and the iconic outdoor brand is focused on making the outdoors accessible to everyone. It’s a mission that deeply resonates with me as I believe that reconnecting to the natural world will help us repurpose business to restore the planet. In this episode, I speak with Eddie Bauer’s Vice President of Marketing, Kristen Elliot, about the many ways Eddie Bauer is bringing this mission to life, from their new outdoor gear rental program to working with underserved communities. Kristen also shared her advice for starting a sustainability journey which can seem daunting at first but should be viewed as a long term investment in brand equity.

John Hardy CEO Kareem Gahed: How Vertical Integration Enables Transparency

SEASON 3, EPISODE 10 | NOVEMBER 30, 2021

John Hardy is an ethical jewelry brand whose production facilities are based in Bali. In fact, they’re the biggest employer on the island. In this episode of Lead With We, I spoke with their CEO, Kareem Gahed, about how John Hardy employs local Balinese artisans to hand craft their pieces and build communities and a culture of humanity and courage. We dig into the details of what ethical production truly means in the jewelry business and how the company’s vertical business model enables greater transparency. Plus, Kareem shares how he hopes to level up the entire industry by setting an example and encouraging others to take a stand on today’s pressing social and environmental issues.

PepsiCo’s Maddy Kulkarni: Educating The Next Generation of Business Leaders

SEASON 3, EPISODE 9 | NOVEMBER 16, 2021

As PepsiCo’s Global Marketing Director of Sustainability & Purpose, Maddy Kulkarni has been an integral part of charting a new course for one of the world’s largest enterprises. And now she’s passing on that knowledge to younger generations as a professor at the University of Texas. She even created her own textbook!

In this episode Maddy and I chatted about the importance of educating the next generation of business leaders on how to blend purpose and profit, the case studies she uses from PepsiCo, and some of the exciting details of pep+ (pep Positive), a strategic end-to-end transformation of PepsiCo that will drive growth by restoring the planet and inspiring positive behavior change. 

We First’s Simon Mainwaring: The Meaning of ‘Lead With We’

SEASON 3, EPISODE 8 | NOVEMBER 9, 2021

My new book, Lead With We, is officially out in stores and online, so in this episode we’re turning the tables and I’m in the hot seat for a change. In this episode Goal 17 CEO Greg Mollner, who has been our partner on this podcast from the beginning, interviews me about how my personal and professional journey led me to rethink business as usual and create the new business paradigm I lay out in the book to better serve humanity and the planet. Greg and I chatted about the collaborative strategies that every business leader can and should adopt to help solve today’s escalating challenges and unlock extraordinary growth.

Dr. Mark Goulston: What The World Needs From Today’s Leaders

SEASON 3, EPISODE 7 | NOVEMBER 1, 2021

Dr. Mark Goulston has had a fascinating career as a psychiatrist, from helping those contemplating suicide to assisting the FBI with hostage negotiation, and now coaching the world’s top executives at companies like IBM and Goldman Sachs to become better leaders through his company Michaelangelo Mindset. Oh, and did I mention he’s written nine books?

In this episode I spoke with Mark about the type of leader the world needs now and in the future and some of the techniques he uses to draw out leadership qualities like humility and empathy.

We also chatted about how business leaders can persevere through the relentless challenges of the pandemic by taking care of their own mental health and the power of women’s leadership.

Noodles & Company CMO Stacey Pool: Leading Through The Pandemic

SEASON 3, EPISODE 6 | OCTOBER 25, 2021

Stacey Pool became Chief Marketing Officer at the fast casual restaurant chain Noodles & Company just before the pandemic started. In this episode Stacey shares how she’s leading this purposeful company through these unprecedented times. We talked openly about how COVID has taught us to be vulnerable as leaders, the balancing act of looking out for the wellbeing of our employees while still providing opportunities for professional growth, and using transparency and innovation to stay ahead of rising consumer expectations around the environment in an industry that’s been hit hard by supply chain constraints.

Bragg Live Foods CEO, Linda Boardman, on Guiding A Purposeful Legacy Brand Into the Future

SEASON 3, EPISODE 5 | OCTOBER 19, 2021

Bragg Live Foods has been in the natural foods space for over a century. Now the family-owned original health food company is a movement for healthier and happier lives with CEO Linda Boardman at the helm. In this episode Linda and I spoke about how she’s leading the company at such a pivotal time in its history, especially given the explosion of clean food and her personal passion for health and wellness. Hear our deep dive conversation into how she’s capitalizing on today’s consumer trends and carrying forward the company values to drive a new era of growth.

Bolt Threads’ Dan Widmaier: Reengineering Fashion & Beauty To Restore The Planet

SEASON 3, EPISODE 4 | OCTOBER 12, 2021

Dan Widmaier is a bioengineer who’s taking on the fashion and beauty industries. As the Co-Founder and CEO of Bolt Threads, he’s ushering in a new era of regenerative lab grown materials that can help us reverse course when it comes to the health of our planet. In this episode Dan and I talked about the science behind Bolt Threads’ patented materials, and how they’re being adopted by big brands like Stella McCartney and Adidas. In what was a fascinating conversation, I heard about his growth strategy, how industry disruption can be used to create social and environmental impact, and why companies that don’t adopt regenerative practices could face existential problems.

Andrew Winston: Getting Your Company to Net Positive

SEASON 3, EPISODE 3 | OCTOBER 5, 2021

As we witness the acute effects of climate change and economic inequality, business needs radical reshaping. Andrew Winston has advised countless companies on how to create positive impact, and in his new book, Net Positive: How Courageous Companies Thrive by Giving More Than They Take, he charts a way forward for the future. In this episode Andrew and I talk about what it means to be net positive, how he co-authored his book with former Unilever CEO Paul Polman who shared his experience at the helm at one of the world’s largest companies, and why net positive is the only path forward for business and humanity.

Unreasonable Group’s Wayne Suiter Matamoros: Repurposing Capitalism

SEASON 3, EPISODE 2 | SEPTEMBER 28, 2021

Business has the power to tackle the existential problems we face in today’s world, but first we must redirect market forces to support companies creating positive change. And that’s why I’m so excited to share my conversation with Wayne Suiter Matamoros, Managing Director of Product and Experience at Unreasonable Group, which runs a business accelerator called Unreasonable Impact focused on just that. Together with Barclays, Unreasonable Impact has invested over $6.5 billion in green economy companies that are disrupting some of the most harmful industries out there, while also creating jobs. I got to chat with Wayne about how he and his team think about creating big change on short timelines, what it really means to take an “unreasonable” approach to today’s biggest challenges, how to repurpose capitalism, and so much more.

Paul Hawken & Regeneration: Ending the Climate Crisis in One Generation

SEASON 3, EPISODE 1 | SEPTEMBER 21, 2021

It’s hard to overstate Paul Hawken’s contribution to transforming the relationship between humanity, business and the natural world. His books and leadership have built the foundation and laid out the roadmap for how we work together to address the climate crisis. It was a privilege to speak with him about his new book: Regeneration: Ending the Climate Crisis in One Generation.

In this episode of Lead With We, Paul and I talk about what “regeneration” means, the actions business and humanity must take to end the climate crisis in one generation, and where we stand as a business community when it comes to authentically embracing the practices that will regenerate and nurture life on earth.

Season 2

Common Future’s Rodney Foxworth: Shifting Capital to Shift Power

SEASON 2, EPISODE 25 | AUGUST 3, 2021

Common Future is a mission-driven non-profit organization that has diverted nearly $300 million into marginalized communities through grants and low-barrier loans since 2001. And they just received a game-changing gift from philanthropist Mackenzie Scott.

It was a pleasure to chat with CEO Rodney Foxworth on the precipice of this new chapter for Common Future. We spoke about his plans for building up this BIPOC-led organization to close the racial wealth gap in America, how his own experiences with racism inform this work, and how he and his team are building a powerful network of “wealth-holders” and “wealth-builders” to create lasting change.

Deanna Bratter Talks Sustainability At The World’s Largest B Corp: Danone North America

SEASON 2, EPISODE 24 | JULY 27, 2021

Deanna Bratter heads up sustainability at the world’s largest public benefit corporation: Danone North America. It’s a $6 billion food and beverage company with a massive portfolio of well-known brands.

It was so refreshing to get Deanna’s perspective on finding the intersections between purpose and profit when advocating for change within a behemoth organization like Danone. We also spoke about the responsibility of not only being a B Corp but also a Benefit Corporation and how that has helped Danone set benchmarks for progress across all parts of their business, and how COVID spurred optimism amongst sustainability practitioners.

Rachel Lincoln Explains prAna’s Responsible Packaging Movement

SEASON 2, EPISODE 23 | JULY 20, 2021

Rachel Lincoln loved fashion, but she didn’t love how she saw the industry treating workers and the planet. So she joined a small California-based activewear brand prAna and worked her way to Director of Sustainability where she is now transforming the entire industry through the Responsible Packaging Movement (RPM). RPM is a coalition of pre-competitive brands who share knowledge and practices that reduce packaging waste and promote the use of sustainable materials and a powerful example of leading with we.

JUST Capital’s Martin Whittaker On Holding Business Accountable

SEASON 2, EPISODE 22 | JULY 13, 2021

Whether you know it or not, JUST Capital is playing a crucial role in business by supplying the economy with critical knowledge that holds companies accountable based on what they hear directly from the American public and how the American public believes they should behave.

In this episode, JUST Capital CEO Martin Whittaker and I had a thought-provoking conversation around the present and future of business. We explored how JUST’s public rankings help direct market forces to build a better future, where we are in the journey towards stakeholder capitalism, why it’s absolutely necessary to create a more equitable economy, and what business leaders can do to bring about this change.

AARP’s Jean Accius On Creating Age-Inclusive Workplaces

SEASON 2, EPISODE 21 | JULY 6, 2021

Diversity, equity and inclusion should be top of mind for any business leader, but we don’t often think about age when it comes to DEI.

In this episode of Lead With We, I’m sharing a conversation with AARP’s Jean Accius, who shared some fascinating research about how businesses benefit from a multigenerational workforce. We talked about why age diversity is a competitive advantage, how businesses can be more inclusive of workers over 50, and what Jean thinks the private sector can learn from nonprofit leadership.

Urban Remedy’s Paul Coletta On Reimagining Our Food System

SEASON 2, EPISODE 20 | JUNE 29, 2021

As CEO at Urban Remedy, Paul Coletta is pushing back against our industrialized food system by trying to cracking the code to bring ultra fresh, clean, and convenient food to consumers at scale.

In this episode of Lead With We, Paul and I chatted about taking an omnichannel approach to brand-building, partnering with hospitals, and his vision for how technology could help reduce food waste and make healthy food more accessible.

How Cleancult’s Ryan Lupberger Is Redefining “Clean”

SEASON 2, EPISODE 19 | JUNE 22, 2021

As a college student, Ryan Lupberger wanted cleaning products that were actually clean. But even nontoxic brands used wasteful plastic packaging. So he decided to create the eco-friendly, zero-waste cleaning brand, Cleancult.

In this episode of Lead With We Ryan shares how focusing on product efficacy helped everything else fall into place, partnering with CarbonFund to ensure operational sustainability, and the surprising advice he got from his parents for weathering the long and winding journey to business success.

Reimagining Capitalism With Harvard Professor Rebecca Henderson

SEASON 2, EPISODE 18 | JUNE 15, 2021

Rebecca Henderson teaches at the Harvard Business School, but she’s a vocal critic of “business as usual.” In fact, her scholarly research focuses on how we need to change capitalism in order to overcome the myriad of crises humanity is facing, and she recently published a book on the topic called “Reimagining Capitalism In A World On Fire.”

Rebecca and I have some things in common, so it was a pleasure to speak with her one-on-one about how we can shift our economic system to drive positive change in the world. It may sound daunting, but she gives some really actionable advice that any business leader or employee can put into practice.

Rachel & Andy Berliner: The Story Behind Amy’s Kitchen

SEASON 2, EPISODE 17 | JUNE 8, 2021

Rachel and Andy Berliner started Amy’s Kitchen based on their own need. Like many new parents, they needed some convenient meals after the birth of their daughter, Amy. But they couldn’t find high-quality, frozen, organic vegetarian food in stores, so they decided to make it themselves!

In this episode of Lead With We, I spoke with Rachel and Andy about how they helped bring about a major shift in the American food system, and how they built a business that aligns with their values.

Starbucks’ Virginia Tenpenny On Leading By Listening

SEASON 2, EPISODE 16 | JUNE 1, 2021

When it comes to social impact, Starbucks has been leading the pack for decades. In fact, it’s hard to keep track of all their initiatives, from local community grants to groundbreaking standards it created to source ingredients like coffee beans and cocoa.

In this episode of Lead With We I got the chance to chat with Virginia Tenpenny, Starbucks’ Chief Social Impact Officer, who shared how Starbucks brings purpose to life on a daily basis, the future of leadership, localizing large scale impact, and the importance of treating your employees like partners.

Google’s Michael Muñoz & Performance Paradigm’s Reggie Butler: Re-Centering Humanity in Business

SEASON 2, EPISODE 15 | MAY 21, 2021

Lots of companies are talking about diversity, equity and inclusion these days, but what does it mean to actually move the needle in those areas? Each of us has a role to play in bringing about a better future, and business leaders are uniquely positioned to create lasting change.

In this episode of Lead With We, I had the privilege of speaking with Michael Muñoz, Global Marketing Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Lead at Google, and Performance Paradigm’s Reggie Butler about the lessons they’ve learned doing DE&I within today’s leading corporations. We spoke about re-centering our shared humanity in business, what needs to happen if we truly want things to be different, and more.

Square Roots’ Tobias Peggs Is Using Tech To Build A Better Food System

SEASON 2, EPISODE 14 | MAY 18, 2021

Whether we like it or not, our current food system is unsustainable. Luckily people like Tobias Peggs are re-engineering how food is grown and distributed in ways that are better for people and the planet. Using real time data and machine learning to create the right climate conditions for growing produce, Tobias’ company, Square Roots, uses refurbished shipping containers situated near local retailers which drastically reduces waste and carbon emissions.

In this episode of Lead With We, Tobias and I chat about how his experience working within Walmart led to his idea for Square Roots, the incredible power of tech in agriculture, creating the next generation of farmers, his purpose-driven approach to business and more.

Interface’s Erin Meezan: Taking Sustainability From “Why” to “How”

SEASON 2, EPISODE 13 | MAY 11, 2021

The modular flooring company Interface has one of the most forward-thinking sustainability visions in the building industry and the private sector in general. Interface’s late founder, Ray Anderson, pivoted the company to an aggressive sustainability path over 20 years ago, and it’s up to Chief Sustainability Officer Erin Meezan to continue and build upon his legacy.

In this episode of Lead With We, Erin and I spoke about going beyond the “do-no-harm” approach to sustainability and actually reinvigorating the planet by building a regenerative business model through partnerships, biomimicry, shared industry tools and more. When it comes to climate, the timelines we’re working against can be daunting, but listen to this episode and learn how there really is a better way.

In this episode of Lead With We, Tobias and I chat about how his experience working within Walmart led to his idea for Square Roots, the incredible power of tech in agriculture, creating the next generation of farmers, his purpose-driven approach to business and more.

MIT’s Sherry Turkle: Vulnerability Is A Superpower

SEASON 2, EPISODE 12 | MAY 4, 2021

I first met Sherry Turkle about ten years ago at a conference where we spent hours chatting about how rapidly advancing technology is changing our relationships to each other and ourselves, and how that affects all sectors of society. It’s something Sherry has spent her life studying as a psychologist and sociologist at MIT.

In this episode of Lead With We, I got the chance to reconnect with Sherry, who recently published a memoir called “The Empathy Diaries.” We spoke about how vulnerability is key to everything from great leadership to moving forward a society post-COVID, practicing empathy as an action, and so much more.

Coolhaus’ Natasha Case On Using Business to Shift Culture

SEASON 2, EPISODE 11 | APRIL 27, 2021

Natasha Case started in architecture and landed in ice cream after one of her professors compared a project of hers to a layer cake. So she took her creative energy and co-founded the premium ice cream brand Coolhaus with her wife Freya Estreller in 2009. Since then Natasha has used the brand as a platform to inspire other LGBTQ+ millennial entrepreneurs.

I thoroughly enjoyed my conversation with Natasha, chatting about the importance of partnering with other brands that share your values, how business can be a vehicle for positive cultural change and some of her tips for succeeding in the early stages of building a brand. Pro-tip: Sometimes you just have to buy a broken-down ice cream truck, tow it to a music festival and see where things go!

Bolthouse Farms’ Jeff Dunn Discusses Empathetic Leadership and Plant-Based Foods

SEASON 2, EPISODE 10 | APRIL 20, 2021

Jeff Dunn cut his teeth at Coca-Cola and gained even more experience in the food industry with the Campbell Soup Company. But where he found his passion was becoming CEO of Bolthouse Farms, a packaged foods company that grew out of a small Michigan farm in 1915. In fact, that passion led him to buy the company back from Campbell’s after selling it to them in 2012.

In this episode of Lead With We, I had the pleasure of speaking with Jeff about how differences in company culture led to the buy-back and taking an agile approach to consumer packaged goods. Plus, we discuss how the enormous demand for plant-based foods is reshaping our food system and how COVID opened up a conversation between Jeff and his leadership team about empathy.

Cooks Venture’s Matthew Wadiak: From Meal Kits To Regenerative Agriculture

SEASON 2, EPISODE 9 | APRIL 13, 2021

Matthew Wadiak went from being a chef to founding Blue Apron, the first meal kit company to go public, and now he’s disrupting food yet again through Cooks Venture. In his newest endeavor, Matthew is pioneering regenerative systems that span the entire value chain of animal agriculture.

I learned so much during my conversation with Matthew. Listen to the episode to understand more about the flaws he’s addressing in our current food system, building brand awareness online to challenge the status quo, and so much more.

CMO Wendy Hauteman On VSP’s Purpose After 65 Years In Business

SEASON 2, EPISODE 8 | APRIL 6, 2021

Following the company’s 65th anniversary, VSP Global’s Chief Marketing Officer Wendy Hauteman decided it was time to craft a new purpose statement. It wasn’t a marketing initiative, but rather a way to set VSP up for future growth in an increasingly competitive industry.

Wendy and I worked together to bring purpose to life at VSP. Listen to our conversation to find out how she got buy-in from all levels of leadership and brought employees along during the process, how VSP has kept purpose alive through a network of internal ambassadors, and how purpose has come into play at VSP in terms of innovation, responding to COVID and more.

CMO Wendy Hauteman On VSP’s Purpose After 65 Years In Business

SEASON 2, EPISODE 7 | MARCH 30, 2021

Lynne Twist is one of the most incredible people I know. She became an activist after she was inspired by Buckminster Fuller’s vision of a global society in which no one was left behind, and since then she’s gone on to write her revolutionary book, ‘The Soul of Money’, examining our cultural attitudes towards wealth. Today, Lynne runs the Pachamama Alliance, an organization that connects leaders in business to indigenous leaders that protect the Amazon rainforest to support personal and collective transformation. She brings with her pure positivity and a powerful message so enjoy our conversation on how business needs to change in order to meet the social and environmental challenges we face.

How Thistle’s Ashwin Cheriyan Motivates People To Make Better Choices For Themselves and the Planet

SEASON 2, EPISODE 6 | MARCH 23, 2021

Ashwin Cheriyan took the leap into entrepreneurship with his wife, Shiri Avnery, when he started the plant-based meal delivery service, Thistle, in 2013. He was a former corporate lawyer, and she was a climate scientist frustrated by how little people were talking about the environmental impact of reducing demand for animal products, let alone the impact on human health. They knew that getting people to shift their eating habits meant making plant-based meals more delicious and convenient.

In this episode of Lead With We, Ashwin and I talk about how his personal connection to healthy food has sustained him through the inevitable ups and downs of entrepreneurship, motivating consumers to make better choices, and so much more.

Why Muniq’s Marc Washington Decided To Launch His First Company During COVID

SEASON 2, EPISODE 5 | MARCH 16, 2021

Have you heard of the gut microbiome? There’s been a lot of buzz about scientific research about how the bacteria in our gut influences our overall health. And in this episode of Lead With We, I talk with first-time entrepreneur Marc Washington about how he launched a consumer nutrition brand called Muniq that uses gut health science to help people who struggle with health issues to take back control. We discuss the personal tragedy that led Marc down this path, his ambitious decision to launch the brand during a pandemic, and whether business is truly meeting the call to be more inclusive.

Aspiration’s Andrei Cherny Is Leveraging Consumer Spending For Good

SEASON 2, EPISODE 4 | MARCH 9, 2021

Andrei Cherny has had a fascinating career. He worked with Al Gore in the early days of raising awareness about climate change and helped start the Consumer Protection Bureau with Sen. Elizabeth Warren. Now, he’s taking on the exact same issues through his company, Aspiration. It’s a pay-what-you-want financial services model that allows customers to divest from things like gun manufacturing and fossil fuels.

In this episode of Lead With We, Andrei chats with me about what led him down this path, some of the lessons learned, and how the role of money is changing.

Why B Corp? B Lab’s Anthea Kelsick On Changing The Culture Of Business

SEASON 2, EPISODE 3 | MARCH 2, 2021

The B Corp movement was started by a group of conscious entrepreneurs in the early 2000’s who believed business should be about more than maximizing profits. Today, there are over 3,500 B Corps across the world. In this episode of Lead With We, I speak with Anthea Kelsick, the CEO of B Lab U.S. & Canada, which is the non-profit that certifies B Corps. We talk about the value of the certification process and accountability, how these companies collaborate on critical issues like reducing carbon emissions, and the incredible momentum around purposeful business today as we face mounting crises.

In this episode of Lead With We, Andrei chats with me about what led him down this path, some of the lessons learned, and how the role of money is changing.

Futurist Sally Uren On How Volatility Unlocks Positive Change

SEASON 2, EPISODE 2 | FEBRUARY 23, 2021

Thanks for joining us for another season of Lead With We. I couldn’t think of a better guest to kick things off than my dear friend, futurist Sally Uren.

Sally runs a leading sustainability non-profit called Forum For The Future that works directly with big brands and business leaders to create global change. Together we discuss the future of humanity (literally), and how we’re seeing very different trajectories play out simultaneously in real-time. And what I particularly love about this conversation is that Sally points to growing movements, such as regenerative agriculture and impact investing, as proof that we can build a positive future through our actions.

In this episode of Lead With We, Andrei chats with me about what led him down this path, some of the lessons learned, and how the role of money is changing.

Lead With We Is Back With NEW Episodes!

SEASON 2, EPISODE 1 | FEBRUARY 16, 2021

Lead With We is back for Season 2 with new episodes every Tuesday! And to kick things off, I’m sharing my thoughts on 2021 so far. Things got off to a rocky start in January, but there are many reasons to be optimistic when it comes to the future of business, the planet and society. And that’s really what this show is about. I’m also sharing a bit about the amazing guests we have lined up for you this season. Together we’ll discover how to re-engineer business to be a force for positive change in 2021 and beyond.
 

Season 1

Reflecting On 2020: What It Really Means To Lead With We

SEASON 1, EPISODE 27 | DECEMBER 15, 2020

How would you describe 2020? Wait, don’t answer that question. I think it’s safe to say that we could all use a bit of a break, as well as a chance to reflect. Personally, as we wrap up 2020 and head into a new year, I’ve been looking back and appreciating my conversations with purposeful business leaders in our first season. So with this episode, I’ll take you through some of my favorite moments from the show, key takeaways and give a little peek into my own story.
 

Satori Capital’s Sunny Vanderbeck Explains The Move Toward ‘Conscious Capitalism’

SEASON 1, EPISODE 26 | DECEMBER 8, 2020

Sunny Vanderbeck launched his investment firm, Satori Capital, in the midst of the 2008 financial crisis. At the time, it was a difficult sell met with resistance within the institutional investment community: he wanted to invest in business as a force for good.

In this episode, Sunny explains how he puts conscious capitalism into practice, from investing with longer time horizons to transforming the employee experience at the company-level, to going above and beyond minimum environmental standards. At this time of great uncertainty and instability, I’m excited to share Sunny’s refreshing take on how the world is moving toward a more sustainable version of capitalism.

Modern Meadow CEO Andras Forgacs Is Transforming Consumer Products With Lab-Grown Materials

SEASON 1, EPISODE 25 | DECEMBER 1, 2020

Andras Forgacs went from venture investor to entrepreneur when he co-founded two biotech companies with his father, Organovo and Modern Meadow, in a quest to bring about a more sustainable world. In this episode, Andras takes me through his journey, from pioneering lab-grown human tissues technology at Organovo for pharmaceutical testing, to applying that same technology to consumer products at Modern Meadow. With Modern Meadow’s lab-grown leather about to hit the market, I couldn’t be more excited to share my conversation with Andras.
 

Why Warby Parker’s Dave Gilboa Took A Stand on Voting in 2020

SEASON 1, EPISODE 24 | NOVEMBER 24, 2020

Warby Parker first disrupted the optical industry by offering direct-to-consumer glasses at an affordable price, but now the company is also shaking things up in the social arena. In this episode I speak with the company’s Founder and co-CEO, Dave Gilboa, about how the company has embraced access to voting in 2020 and partnered with other businesses to spread their message far and wide. We also discuss what’s next for this ten-year-old brand, the possibility of going public and choosing purpose-driven investors in the next stage of growth.
 

How Allbirds’ Tim Brown Is Innovating And Sharing To Solve For Climate Change

SEASON 1, EPISODE 23 | NOVEMBER 17, 2020

Allbirds quickly gained a cult following after launching a simple and sustainable sneaker in 2016. In this episode of Lead With We, Allbirds CEO Tim Brown talks about how he and his team are working to reduce their carbon footprint and bringing the rest of the world along with them. From partnerships with “the competition,” to award-winning innovations and inventing a universal metric for carbon, Tim shares his many insights on how business can be a force for positive, rapid change.
 

Mammut CEO Oliver Pabst On Reinvigorating A Legacy Brand With Purpose

SEASON 1, EPISODE 22 | NOVEMBER 10, 2020

Founded in 1862, Mammut built its reputation amongst outdoor enthusiasts by creating the strongest mountaineering ropes out there. Now, as they look to the future, my dear friend Oliver Pabst is leading the company with a new purpose: to create a world moved by mountains. Listen to my conversation with Oliver to learn how the company is leaning on their purpose to reach a diverse set of global consumers, how they partner with other companies on sustainability, and more.

How Charity Water’s Scott Harrison Gets People Hooked On Generosity

SEASON 1, EPISODE 21 | NOVEMBER 3, 2020

My friend Scott Harrison has had quite the personal journey. Scott was a nightclub promoter in New York City living the late night life, before he did a 180 with an intent to make an impact. After spending two years volunteering as a photojournalist in West Africa, he founded charity: water, which builds clean water sources for people in developing countries. Learn how Scott built one of the fastest growing non-profits in America. We discuss everything from how he views relationships with those who give to his organization, to how he set up a radically transparent model for tracking donations, to how he marries emotional storytelling with the latest technology to grow his global community.

Prima’s Christopher Gavigan On Building Consumer Trust Through Education

SEASON 1, EPISODE 20 | OCTOBER 27, 2020

Christopher Gavigan is a scientist-turned-entreprenuer who co-founded The Honest Company with actress Jessica Alba before going on to start one of the leading CBD brands, Prima. In each venture, he laid the foundation for success through education, by sharing his knowledge of how chemicals in everyday products affect our health. In this episode, Chris shares with me his passion for building deep trust with consumers and creating a better future through business.

Ben & Jerry’s Jay Curley On Why Delicious Ice Cream And Social Justice Go Hand-in-Hand

SEASON 1, EPISODE 19 | OCTOBER 20, 2020

Before becoming the Global Head of Integrated Marketing for Ben & Jerry’s, Jay Curley dreamt of working for the famous ice cream brand that has taken bold stances on key social justice issues, from marriage equality to ending mass incarceration and supporting the Black Lives Matter movement. So how does a company like Ben & Jerry’s manage to keep growing and earning loyal employees and customers while speaking out on such controversial issues? In this episode of Lead With We, Jay Curley gives me an insider perspective based on his twelve years inside one of the most socially conscious and beloved brands out there.

Kara Goldin On Why Consumers Want Purposeful Products More Than Ever

SEASON 1, EPISODE 18 | OCTOBER 13, 2020

When you look up ‘disrupter’, I’m pretty sure Kara Goldin’s name is listed. Kara is the founder and CEO of Hint, Inc., and she completely disrupted the bottled water industry with her best known product, Hint water. As she was about to welcome her fourth child, Kara’s idea to help her lead a more healthy life, along with her bold, scrappy approach, led to the creation of top-selling flavored waters without artificial flavors in an incredibly crowded category. Kara also discusses her political activism around access to clean water in America and how she doesn’t let her own fear get the best of her, a core theme in her new book, Undaunted.

From Climate Scientist To Entrepreneur: How Adam Lowry Disrupts Crowded Consumer Categories

SEASON 1, EPISODE 17 | OCTOBER 6, 2020

Adam Lowry thought he would make a difference as a climate scientist, but instead, he’s changed the world through disruptive startups like Method, which makes eco-friendly cleaning products, and Ripple Foods, which uses technology to make high-protein dairy replacements that actually taste good. And he’s got another killer product on the way. Listen to this episode to hear how Adam has persevered in the face of industry attacks, how he approaches branding, and why he helped found the B-corp movement.

Bombas’ David Heath On Tackling Homelessness Through Socks

SEASON 1, EPISODE 16 | SEPTEMBER 29, 2020

Like many of the leading consumer brands in today’s marketplace, David Heath built a cult following around the mission of his sock company, Bombas. Bombas donates a pair of high quality, high performance socks to the homeless community for every pair they sell.

ThriveWorx’s Mike Mannina On Channeling Philanthropy Through Your Supply Chain

SEASON 1, EPISODE 15 | SEPTEMBER 22, 2020

Have you ever wondered how to get all your stakeholders on board when it comes to building a business model that benefits everyone? ThriveWorx has figured it out. Joining us this week is Mike Mannina the Co-Founder and CEO of ThriveWorx, a non-profit platform empowering companies to turn their supply chains into forces of community transformation. Mike and I have a great discussion on why business is the most effective tool for community development, in addition to learning how purposefully channeling philanthropic dollars to the people in your supply chain actually reduces business risk by strengthening relationships.

The North Face’s Arne Arens Gets Candid About Boycotting Facebook and Sustainable Growth

SEASON 1, EPISODE 14 | SEPTEMBER 15, 2020

The North Face is known for its outdoor apparel, but in July 2020 the company became known for being the first major brand to speak out about against hate speech on Facebook as part of the #StopHateforProfit campaign. Join me in conversation with Global Brand President Arne Arens as he takes us inside that bold decision, and how it connects directly to the mission of The North Face brand, and how ultimately making long-lasting clothing that’s meant to be recycled makes for great business.

OMAZE’s Matthew Pohlson On His Near Death Experience And Disrupting Charity

SEASON 1, EPISODE 13 | SEPTEMBER 8, 2020

If you are looking to be inspired by how a change of mindset can unlock joy and success in the entrepreneur journey, listen to this episode. Matthew Pohlson, Co-founder and CEO of Omaze joins me for an in-depth conversation about how his for-profit model is disrupting the non-profit space, the personal reasons behind his work, and a near death experience that forever changed his life, and his company.

Doug Palladini of VANS On Choosing Integrity Over Ubiquity

SEASON 1, EPISODE 12 | SEPTEMBER 1, 2020

In this episode, I have a great conversation with Doug Palladini, Global Brand President of VANS on how to build a purposeful brand by really listening to your customers and being truly authentic. Doug discusses how the company’s approach translated into their unique response to COVID 19 and more.

BlackRock’s Frank Cooper On Retooling Capitalism & How Sustainability Drives Growth

SEASON 1, EPISODE 11 | AUGUST 25, 2020

In this episode, I have a great conversation with Frank Cooper, Senior Managing Director, Global Chief Marketing Officer of BlackRock, the world’s largest hedge fund. Frank gets candid about the challenge climate change poses to business, what needs to change about capitalism, and how sustainability and purpose have become driving forces behind innovation. Frank also tells me why we should be optimistic about what we can achieve together through business.

CEO Blair Kellison Discusses How Traditional Medicinals Competes On Purpose

SEASON 1, EPISODE 10 | AUGUST 18, 2020

This week it was a pleasure to welcome Blair Kellison to the podcast, the President of herbal medicine company Traditional Medicinals. Blair offers insights on how his company has thrived since 1974 through long term decision-making, a holistic understanding of sustainability, and a carefully crafted company culture. He also shares his belief that the highest purpose of business is to address climate change and income inequality.

Joey Bergstein, CEO of Seventh Generation, On Building Products for People and Planet

SEASON 1, EPISODE 9 | AUGUST 11, 2020

Thrilled to have Joey Bergstein, CEO of Seventh Generation join me on the podcast this week. We talk about the Iroquois philosophy which inspired the formation of this eco-friendly home products company over 30 years ago, and how it has grown into one of the most profitable and purpose-driven pieces of Unilever’s portfolio. Joey shares information that any brand can learn from around building a virtuous cycle between creating products with integrity, advocacy and the bottom line.

VF Corporation’s Steve Rendle on “Balancing Purpose and Performance”

SEASON 1, EPISODE 8 | AUGUST 4, 2020

In this episode, I have a great conversation with Steve Rendle, the Chairman, President, and CEO of VF Corporation, who shares how a global enterprise pivots to purpose with a portfolio of twelve leading activity-based brands. Steve discusses how he mobilized that portfolio and its employees around issues like COVID-19 and what the future of leadership looks like to the benefit of all stakeholders in our future. 

 

How Harry’s leverages its capital and culture to address men’s mental health

SEASON 1, EPISODE 7 | JULY 28, 2020

In this episode, I have a great conversation with Maggie Hureau, Head of Social Impact at Harry’s. She talks about how Harry’s aims to get more men access to mental health care through its philanthropic efforts and partnerships with nonprofits. Its partners offer mental health resources to men across a number of demographics, including those who identify as LGBTQ, veterans, those facing homelessness and more.

Jeni’s Ice Cream’s 20-year journey to becoming a community-centered, impact-focused business leader

SEASON 1, EPISODE 6 | JULY 21, 2020

This week I welcomed Jeni Britton, founder of Jeni’s Ice Cream to the podcast. If you don’t know Jeni’s – you should. We had a great discussion about their ingrained sense of community with a team of 800+ employees, her journey to becoming a true impact leader, and how critical it is to have business show up in social discussions. Jeni’s Ice Cream is a purpose-driven leader, a trailblazer in the industry and a company business can learn from. Enjoy!

Thrive Farmers mission to stabilize coffee pricing to support small farmers in Central America

SEASON 1, EPISODE 5 | JULY 14, 2020

Michael Jones talks about how THRIVE Farmers has designed a revolutionary new business model that for the first time in history decouples coffee from the toxic connection to volatile commodities markets, thereby aligning the interests of farmers with those who are buying and consuming their coffee. Thrive’s revenue sharing model creates stable and predictable long-term pricing for farmers, providing true economic sustainability, and transforming families and communities that produce coffee.

Greenbar Distillery’s Unexpected Journey To Become A Sustainability and Impact Leader

SEASON 1, EPISODE 4 | JULY 7, 2020

This is a fascinating episode with Melkon Khosrovian, the Co-Founder and Spiritsmaker at Greenbar Distillery. Melkon reveals the obstacles he had to overcome to be a truly impact-focused business, how they partnered with growers to launch some of the most carbon negative products and how they adapted to the COVID-19 crisis. Greenbar Distillery is a shining example of how business can be a force for good and drive growth by solving the pressing problems of today.

How SanMar Delivered High Growth, Sustainability and PPE Equipment for COVID-19

SEASON 1, EPISODE 3 | JUNE 30, 2020

A conversation with Jeremy Lott, Owner and President of Seattle based SanMar, on aligning economic strategies with a purpose-driven company.

A Conversation with TOMS on Transforming Lives, Scaling Impact and Redefining Business

SEASON 1, EPISODE 2 | JUNE 23, 2020

In this episode, I had a great conversation with Amy Smith, Chief Strategy and Impact Officer at TOMS. We talked about how TOMS is evolving how it turns business into a force for good and she gives great insights into the strategies and tactics they use to engage consumers so they can grow their business and its impact at the same time. This is something every brand must do to meet the new demands of their employees and customers, and there’s no better leader to learn from than Amy. 

How IBM, Call for Code and Developers Worldwide are Tackling COVID-19

SEASON 1, EPISODE 1 | JUNE 16, 2020

In this episode, Bob Lord, Senior Vice-President of Cognitive Applications and Developer Ecosystems at IBM, inspires us with breakthrough innovations created by IBM, developers worldwide and its partners. He shares the strategies and tactics of true entrepreneurship that not only solve for today’s greatest challenges like the climate crisis and COVID-19, but also unlocks new and expansive opportunities for business. This is the power of technology, collaboration and impact at its best!