Blogging the Swoosh

4.10.2006

New plan...wanna play?

I'm still stepping down, but I had an idea. Do you want to be the one that carries on the voice from inside the Swoosh? I said my piece, I called out the flaws inside Nike, but I don't see all. Something you want to say? You can do it here.

If you'd like to continue the legacy, send an email to swooshblog@gmail.com. Don't worry, you can start up an anonymous email, I don't have to know who you are (in fact, I'd prefer that).

Nike or former Nike employee's only. Tell me why the blog should be yours. Once I select someone, I'll email the login info and it' yours to change. You'll be the Swoosh Blogger.

Happy bidding.

4.07.2006

Still here, but done

Word is you are wondering where I'm out. The truth- I'm bored. As I said in my first retirement post, this place isn't that great. I had my chance to vent, now I'm done. I'll go back to work and be the guy that sits next to you. The guy you ride the elevator with, the guy on the treadmill next to you, or even the guy that signs your checks.

Thanks for reading.....long live the swoosh!

3.21.2006

Q3 Nike Employee Meeting Recap

In case you missed the all employee meeting today, here is a little recap from the eyes and ears of the Swoosh Blog:

1. Empty seats: This had to be the most lightly attended quarterly meeting I've seen. What, no love for Mr. Mark Parker? Did Perez have a meeting this small?

2. Speaking of Parker: Bro, I like you but you need to kick up the excitement level! You seemed a little nervous. Relax, all of us are behind you and your leadership. We are waiting for you to captivate us.

3. Don Blair: The best financial overview I've seen in these meetings. Detailed, but not boring. Good points about spending (see my previous post on admin spending habits). Keep it up, you were the highlight today....that doesn't get said much about a finance guy!

4. Charlie: Great choice of words when talking about Under Armour (though you never said the U and A words).

5. Soccer: If you are a soccer fan, stay tuned....Nike has some great stuff coming. Adidas is going down in their own back yard.

6. Chad Hedrick: Shit, this kid is amazing! I didn't know much about him before today, but I'll be tuning into 2010 @ Vancouver BC. He is probably the best Nike advocate we can have on our team. A 180 from the 'other' winter Olympic athlete we sponsor.

*the comments in this blog do not reflect Nike's opinion or position in anyway. They are the sole thoughts of 1 individual. Please do not sue me.

3.20.2006

Save money, cancel the admin's AmEx cards!

Nike spends a lot of money. A beautiful 175 acre campus, athletes with $90 million + contracts, multiple private jets, an ex-CEO with a ridiculous severance package. But in my opinion, the greatest waste of all is the money spent by corporate administrative assistants (secretary's for those of you who lived and worked in the good 'ol days).

I am amazed nearly every day by the amount of money wasted through spending by admin's. I don't doubt their value on a purely professional support level, but they spend company money like bitchy daughters of a rich daddy.

Here's one of my favorites: the site visit. This is where the admin(s) travel to the location of an upcoming meeting to see if it will work out. And we are not talking about the local conference center. These locations include Scottsdale, Las Vegas, Miami, Hawaii, New York, etc. Two or three days staying in the hotels, eating at the restaurants and meeting in the places that their bosses will during the next week. Because honestly, these hotels have not idea how to handle a corporate meeting without some know-it-all admin's telling them how to do it!

Another good one is the sample sale! This is where 3-4 admin's get together to sell sample/left over product. Now this is a 2 day event, and because they are working so hard they get every meal catered at company expense. What, you mean you don't get free breakfast and lunch when you work real hard? I thought everyone did?

The last example I'll share with you is the admin holiday/birthday/summer/whatever party. During this event, all the valuable admin's take an entire day away from their work and go have fun, again at company expense. I mean between the catered meals and trips to Miami, they get worn out and need a break. Pile all the girls in a limo and lets go out to lunch downtown! El Gaucho anyone? Then maybe a movie and finally a martini to cap off the day. A girl's gotta wind down somehow!

You probably noticed that I refer to these admin's as females. In my 5 years at Nike, I have not met a single male admin. I know it is traditionally a women's job, but this is 2006 and gender roles no longer exist, right? We are striving to have 50% of our employee's as females, and however many percent of employee's as minorities. I want 25% of our admin's to be men. Is that too much to ask?

Seriously folks, these admin's have it made. I just hope that when sales dip and profits fall, managers step up and see the waste that goes on with the little circles of admins. Take away the Blackberry's, cell phones, laptops, and comp days...give them to employee's that actually make Nike money.

*the comments in this blog do not reflect Nike's opinion or position in anyway. They are the sole thoughts of 1 individual. Please do not sue me.

3.13.2006

Nike and the Blazers?

Nike and our competitors spend tens....likely hundreds of millions wooing college athletic departments across the nation. Their teams wear our shoes, our clothes, and licensed gear bares our logo. It must pay off, competition for teams and coaches have driven market prices sky high. And when bowl season comes around it all pays off when your brand is represented in all but 3 games.

So with Paul Allen complaining of the financial burden and the city of Portland unable to help out, why doesn't Nike buy the team? Think about it, guaranteed product placement. A dedicated testing lab for elite product. A team that Nike's best players can call home?

It really isn't any different than our relationship with the University of Oregon. Why not make it official, and take our influence to front and center rather than denying it?

It just might work.

*the comments in this blog do not reflect Nike's opinion or position in anyway. They are the sole thoughts of 1 individual. Please do not sue me.

3.08.2006

Should Nike's CEO expect privacy?

Imagine my surprise today when I was reading Helen Jung's Playbooks and Profits blog as I do every day. She posted about Mark Parker's first month, but something else jumped out at me:

"And for a man who generally keeps below the radar, he had a lot to say in a recent e-mail to Nike employees that was sent to us by a trusty source."

Then Helen goes on to quote the email further, and then publishes the ENTIRE text! Guess I can't blame here too much, but who the hell was the employee that sent her the email? Can you say "violation of the Nike Electronic Communication Policy?"

It's hard to think that many readers called me a traitor for allegedly divulging company secrets, specifically around my post on fearing Under Armour. Telling the world that we fear Under Armour is nothing compared to secretly sending internal (and assumed private) communications to a reporter.

I wonder if someone in ER will search sent emails to see who might have sent this to Ms. Jung? It's certainly a better use of time than trying to stop me.

*the comments in this blog do not reflect Nike's opinion or position in anyway. They are the sole thoughts of 1 individual. Please do not sue me.

3.06.2006

Bode (bow-dee)

Bode Miller must be the most over-hyped Olympic athlete in modern history. Lucky for me, my company put millions behind this guy. Bye Bye year end bonus!

The first time I ever heard of this guy was at the Q2 all employee meeting this year (which is really for only about 750 employee's in person). As we waited in line to enter the plush Italian leather theatre, all the beautiful ladies who work at the Tiger Woods center were wearing t-shirts that read "Join Bode." There even is(was) a web site out that by that name. Of course it has little content on it right now; I wonder why?

So bottom line: The community of Nike doesn't care about Bode. I don't know a single employee who knew who this guys was before two months ago. I haven't spoken with 1 person that cared whether he won or lost. I did however come across several co-workers that were fiercely calculating in the heads up much larger their bonus checks would be if Nike didn't spend millions promoting this loud mouth jack ass. The web site, the t-shirts, the motor coach...it all adds up.

I wonder who the guy is that backed this marketing plan? Nice, real nice. Thanks for that. If we are lucky you'll be joining Perez.

*the comments in this blog do not reflect Nike's opinion or position in anyway. They are the sole thoughts of 1 individual. Please do not sue me.

Just for the Kool Aid drinkers...

You know what, I think I will keep posting on this blog. Just for the haters, the Kool Aid drinkers.

And you are right, one of the reasons I write is for the rush. Yet I realized over the past couple of weeks that Nike will never know who I am. They will never find me, and frankly I'd be surprised if they wasted their time. You give me more credit than I deserve when you say I'll be hunted down and fired.

Keep this in mind: I could be the guy sitting in the cube next door. The guy you play basketball with at lunch, or the guy on the treadmill next to you at the Lance. I could be your boss, your department head, or even the VP that ensures you and I still have jobs. Hell, I could be your daddy!

Read on. Swoosh.

P.S. Big f&cking deal, I mis-spelled Heel....so sue me.

*the comments in this blog do not reflect Nike's opinion or position in anyway. They are the sole thoughts of 1 individual. Please do not sue me.

3.01.2006

Point Taken?

So it's been over a week since my last post. Frankly, I'm getting bored. This place hasn't offered up near as many interesting topics as I had imagined. In other words, it's just not that interesting.

I will say, I think my point has gotten across. As a commenter stated, Nike is not the end-all, be-all. The good benefits cover up the bad. It's a give and take place, just like any other company.

To the haters, no I have not been "caught" or "outed" as you put it. No ER (I did learn what that means) or HR calling me into the office. I think that is part of it, no fear of the chase. Nike couldn't figure out who I am if they spent the entire SG&A budget to do so.

I may post again. Depends. See you in the Tar Heal, I'm there a lot.

*the comments in this blog do not reflect Nike's opinion or position in anyway. They are the sole thoughts of 1 individual. Please do not sue me.

2.23.2006

Nike is the greatest place in the world to work at!!!

So if Nike is such an amazing place to work, why would anyone leave? I've been told by both non-Nike readers and fellow coworkers chiming in on Blogging the Swoosh (hopefully not on company time), that this place is just amazing, it's the best. Right?

Apparently, one (former) coworker didn't think Nike was the end-all be-all. Twenty seven year veteran Kirk Richardson left the place that many of you think can do no wrong, to join our newest neighbors Keen Footwear. Here is the story.

I have no idea why Mr. Richardson left, but I've got a couple of idea's why someone else might. Seems like nearly every day Nike people are bolting for the other crap-holes around here (yes, I'm talking about Adidas and Columbia). There's got to be a reason.

For example, if you didn't play basketball, football, or baseball in college...prepare for a long Nike career of going nowhere! Doesn't matter how much marketing or business genius you have, your in a rut. Of course if you QB'ed the hometown favorite, you're golden. Congrats.

Now if you want to do sports marketing, you have a whole different set of rules. You'll need to be able to 'relate' to the athletes. You know, come from the same 'hood', speak the same language. Catch my drift? Otherwise, your stuck with some lame sport like cycling or curling.

Now if you are a woman, all the rules are thrown out. Apparently hotties are all naturally smart, creative, strategic, and business tough. Hire them all! Then they can all come to work in the Nike Hottie uniform: $200 jeans that drag on the ground, over knee high pointed leather boots with a 3" heal. Because that is professional attire. Reality check: Nike isn't your sorority! But seriously, apparently Nike feels it's more important to strive for a 50/50 balance between men and women than building a workforce of highly capable professionals.

Of course, I'm wrong as you will all tell me. Nike is great, Nike is the best employer ever, Nike doesn't discriminate, blah, blab, blah. Whatever.

*the comments in this blog do not reflect Nike's opinion or position in anyway. They are the sole thoughts of 1 individual. Please do not sue me.