37 - Steve Lesnard, The North Face & Nike
In Ep. 37 of Earned, Conor sits down with an expert on brand building and outdoor apparel: Steve Lesnard. Now the Chief Brand Officer at Sephora, Steve previously served as the CMO and Global VP of Product Creation at The North Face, and Global VP and GM of Nike's Running division. We first hear how The North Face adapted its practices and culture to prioritize employee well-being throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Next, we dive into Steve’s 20-year career at Nike, learning what he believes contributes to the brand’s impressive staying power and how he helped grow the business by 10x. Steve details his experience leading Nike’s Olympic and Running divisions, and unpacks how launching the Nike+ app helped the brand better understand consumer behavior to drive product innovation. We then switch gears to brand collaborations, and Steve explains why the unexpected The North Face x Gucci team-up worked so well. Finally, we discuss influencer marketing via athletes, before closing the show with Steve’s approach to leadership.