Leader of Hobby Lobby grows his business by sticking to his convictions
In today’s increasingly secular culture, mixing faith-based values and beliefs into a business model doesn’t compute for many business leaders. But some corporate executives who lead highly profitable secular businesses—such as Tyson Foods, Hobby Lobby, PepsiCo, and Interstate Batteries—say that the application of principles central to a Christian worldview and ethics system has been the key to their success.
In a recent interview with David Green, Founder and CEO of Hobby Lobby, we see that Green’s commitment to both prayer and servant leadership laid the groundwork for meteoric growth for Hobby lobby from its humble beginnings as a small frame shop to a craft-store chain spanning 41 states – with more than $1 billion in annual sales.
By sticking to his core values, Green has seen his company flourish.
Three Key Take-Aways from David Green of Hobby Lobby:
- Customer service based in servant leadership is crucial. Green said that customer service starts at the top. He states, “Here at corporate, that’s everyone’s assignment…In fact, we say that the stores are focused on their customers and should be servants to their customers. Therefore, we at the corporate office see ourselves as servants to the stores.”
- Integrity is a must. Green leads by example for his employees to follow. He explains how “you should not expect something from someone that you are not willing to do yourself…We should set the example of integrity and serving the customer.”
- Take care of employees by respecting their families and their time. Green pays his employees more than the industry average and closes his stores earlier in the evening than the competition. And Hobby Lobby is closed on Sundays to respect family time and for those who choose to worship. By taking care of employees in these ways, Green says they are more effective and motivated to take care of customers – ultimately positively impacting Hobby Lobby’s bottom line.
Does your brand’s underlying worldview add value for both employees and ultimately your customers?
From a business perspective, Hobby Lobby serves as a good model for how retailers can succeed in the marketplace while expressing faith-compatible values that respect a biblically based worldview.
And for those brands that choose to apply a faith-compatible approach to their operations, there is a rapidly emerging segment of 46 million consumers that are actively looking for retailers to engage them in the marketplace.
Known as Faith Driven Consumers, they spend $1.75 trillion annually and make up 15 percent of the US population.
Given the impressive growth of Hobby Lobby across the nation, there’s clearly a receptive and viable marketplace for retailers that offer wholesome products and services – and operate in ways that reflect faith-based values to consumers who are seeking brands that buck the trends and boldly walk the talk.
Faith Driven Consumers – one out of every seven Americans – are actively choosing retailers like Hobby Lobby that align with their values. Is your brand ready to start integrating with this economically powerful market segment in a meaningful way that will reap bottom-line benefits?
Besides, expressing faith compatible values not only resonates with Faith Driven Consumers. It resonates with most consumers, evidenced by the success of Hobby Lobby with a diverse group of customers.