Am I allowed to say that this is one of my favorite interviews ever? For so many reasons...the genuine self-effacing humility and humor of my guest, CEO Ian Rosenberger, the brilliantly synergistic mission and business he's building, but most of all, Ian is enthralling to be with.
Thread International collects trash, primarily plastic from some of the poorest countries in the world and turns it into usable products putting people from those poor communities to work in the process.
The point here is that while Ian is doing a really good thing, he is, at heart, an entrepreneur and a smart one. Listen closely and you'll hear how Ian thinks on multiple levels as he builds "circularity" that saves time, energy, and boatloads of money.
There is something for every part of being a CEO in this episode. Whether you're focused on purpose, innovation, efficiency, leadership, product design, productivity, or fair trade, it's all here.
4:02 - Ian's experience in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake
5:13 - The Thread International story
8:14 - How a vision of earth as the human body led to a global business about sustainability
10:41 - Ian's insights on being a CEO
11:24 - Naming the backpack...why Day Owl?
13:51 - Thread International's huge COVID pivot
16:02 - The hard truth about child labor in big companies.
16:57 - What Ian says to big company's to win their trust.
19:40 - How product circularity improves margin and why Thread is sharing this cost-saving process.