Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike

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In this candid and riveting memoir, for the first time ever, Nike founder and board chairman Phil Knight shares the inside story of the company’s early days as an intrepid start-up and its evolution into one of the world’s most iconic, game-changing, and profitable brands.

Young, searching, fresh out of business school, Phil Knight borrowed fifty dollars from his father and launched a company with one simple mission: import high-quality, low-cost running shoes from Japan. Selling the shoes from the trunk of his Plymouth Valiant, Knight grossed eight thousand dollars that first year, 1963. Today, Nike’s annual sales top $30 billion. In this age of start-ups, Knight’s Nike is the gold standard, and its swoosh is more than a logo. A symbol of grace and greatness, it’s one of the few icons instantly recognized in every corner of the world.

But Knight, the man behind the swoosh, has always been a mystery. Now, in a memoir that’s surprising, humble, unfiltered, funny, and beautifully crafted, he tells his story at last. It all begins with a classic crossroads moment. Twenty-four years old, backpacking through Asia and Europe and Africa, wrestling with life’s Great Questions, Knight decides the unconventional path is the only one for him. Rather than work for a big corporation, he will create something all his own, something new, dynamic, different. Knight details the many terrifying risks he encountered along the way, the crushing setbacks, the ruthless competitors, the countless doubters and haters and hostile bankers—as well as his many thrilling triumphs and narrow escapes. Above all, he recalls the foundational relationships that formed the heart and soul of Nike, with his former track coach, the irascible and charismatic Bill Bowerman, and with his first employees, a ragtag group of misfits and savants who quickly became a band of swoosh-crazed brothers.

Together, harnessing the electrifying power of a bold vision and a shared belief in the redemptive, transformative power of sports, they created a brand, and a culture, that changed everything.
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About the author

One of the world’s most influential business executives, Phil Knight is the founder of Nike, Inc. He served as CEO of the company from 1964 to 2004, as board chairman through 2016, and he is currently Chairman Emertius. He lives in Oregon with his wife, Penny.

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Reviews

4.5
507 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Simon and Schuster
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Published on
Apr 26, 2016
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Pages
400
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ISBN
9781501135934
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Business
Biography & Autobiography / Personal Memoirs
Sports & Recreation / Running & Jogging
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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Paul Kalanithi
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • PULITZER PRIZE FINALIST • This inspiring, exquisitely observed memoir finds hope and beauty in the face of insurmountable odds as an idealistic young neurosurgeon attempts to answer the question What makes a life worth living?

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY
The New York Times Book Review • People • NPR • The Washington Post • Slate • Harper’s Bazaar • Esquire • Time Out New York • Publishers Weekly • BookPage

Finalist for the PEN Center USA Literary Award in Creative Nonfiction and the Books for a Better Life Award in Inspirational Memoir

At the age of thirty-six, on the verge of completing a decade’s worth of training as a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. One day he was a doctor treating the dying, and the next he was a patient struggling to live. And just like that, the future he and his wife had imagined evaporated. When Breath Becomes Air chronicles Kalanithi’s transformation from a naïve medical student “possessed,” as he wrote, “by the question of what, given that all organisms die, makes a virtuous and meaningful life” into a neurosurgeon at Stanford working in the brain, the most critical place for human identity, and finally into a patient and new father confronting his own mortality.

What makes life worth living in the face of death? What do you do when the future, no longer a ladder toward your goals in life, flattens out into a perpetual present? What does it mean to have a child, to nurture a new life as another fades away? These are some of the questions Kalanithi wrestles with in this profoundly moving, exquisitely observed memoir.

Paul Kalanithi died in March 2015, while working on this book, yet his words live on as a guide and a gift to us all. “I began to realize that coming face to face with my own mortality, in a sense, had changed nothing and everything,” he wrote. “Seven words from Samuel Beckett began to repeat in my head: ‘I can’t go on. I’ll go on.’” When Breath Becomes Air is an unforgettable, life-affirming reflection on the challenge of facing death and on the relationship between doctor and patient, from a brilliant writer who became both.

Praise for When Breath Becomes Air

“I guarantee that finishing this book and then forgetting about it is simply not an option. . . . Part of this book’s tremendous impact comes from the obvious fact that its author was such a brilliant polymath. And part comes from the way he conveys what happened to him—passionately working and striving, deferring gratification, waiting to live, learning to die—so well.”—Janet Maslin, The New York Times

“An emotional investment well worth making: a moving and thoughtful memoir of family, medicine and literature. It is, despite its grim undertone, accidentally inspiring.”—The Washington Post

“Possesses the gravity and wisdom of an ancient Greek tragedy . . . [Kalanithi] delivers his chronicle in austere, beautiful prose. The book brims with insightful reflections on mortality that are especially poignant coming from a trained physician familiar with what lies ahead.”—The Boston Globe

“Devastating and spectacular . . . [Kalanithi] is so likeable, so relatable, and so humble, that you become immersed in his world and forget where it’s all heading.”—USA Today
Peter Thiel
Walter Isaacson
FROM THE AUTHOR OF THE BESTSELLING BIOGRAPHIES OF BENJAMIN FRANKLIN AND ALBERT EINSTEIN, THIS IS THE EXCLUSIVE BIOGRAPHY OF STEVE JOBS.

Based on more than forty interviews with Jobs conducted over two years—as well as interviews with more than a hundred family members, friends, adversaries, competitors, and colleagues—Walter Isaacson has written a riveting story of the roller-coaster life and searingly intense personality of a creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.

At a time when America is seeking ways to sustain its innovative edge, and when societies around the world are trying to build digital-age economies, Jobs stands as the ultimate icon of inventiveness and applied imagination. He knew that the best way to create value in the twenty-first century was to connect creativity with technology. He built a company where leaps of the imagination were combined with remarkable feats of engineering.

Although Jobs cooperated with this book, he asked for no control over what was written nor even the right to read it before it was published. He put nothing off-limits. He encouraged the people he knew to speak honestly. And Jobs speaks candidly, sometimes brutally so, about the people he worked with and competed against. His friends, foes, and colleagues provide an unvarnished view of the passions, perfectionism, obsessions, artistry, devilry, and compulsion for control that shaped his approach to business and the innovative products that resulted.

Driven by demons, Jobs could drive those around him to fury and despair. But his personality and products were interrelated, just as Apple’s hardware and software tended to be, as if part of an integrated system. His tale is instructive and cautionary, filled with lessons about innovation, character, leadership, and values.
Ashlee Vance
In the spirit of Steve Jobs and Moneyball, Elon Musk is both an illuminating and authorized look at the extraordinary life of one of Silicon Valley’s most exciting, unpredictable, and ambitious entrepreneurs—a real-life Tony Stark—and a fascinating exploration of the renewal of American invention and its new “makers.”

Elon Musk spotlights the technology and vision of Elon Musk, the renowned entrepreneur and innovator behind SpaceX, Tesla, and SolarCity, who sold one of his Internet companies, PayPal, for $1.5 billion. Ashlee Vance captures the full spectacle and arc of the genius’s life and work, from his tumultuous upbringing in South Africa and flight to the United States to his dramatic technical innovations and entrepreneurial pursuits.

Vance uses Musk’s story to explore one of the pressing questions of our age: can the nation of inventors and creators who led the modern world for a century still compete in an age of fierce global competition? He argues that Musk—one of the most unusual and striking figures in American business history—is a contemporary, visionary amalgam of legendary inventors and industrialists including Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, Howard Hughes, and Steve Jobs. More than any other entrepreneur today, Musk has dedicated his energies and his own vast fortune to inventing a future that is as rich and far-reaching as the visionaries of the golden age of science-fiction fantasy.

Thorough and insightful, Elon Musk brings to life a technology industry that is rapidly and dramatically changing by examining the life of one of its most powerful and influential titans.

Phil Knight
“This book, a young reader’s edition of Knight’s autobiography, is an eye-opening look into the story of Knight before his multibillion dollar company. His tenacity is inspiring and will be a valuable lesson for young entrepreneurs.” —School Library Journal

“Knight writes from the heart in this young adult version of his 2016 adult memoir. The book takes readers from the beginning of his dream…to the creation of the internationally known, uber-successful Nike brand. Shoe Dog reads like a great story about how an ambition turned into a business, while at the same time it serves as a guide for accomplishing great things.” —VOYA

In this young readers edition of the New York Times bestseller, Nike founder and board chairman Phil Knight “offers a rare and revealing look at the notoriously media-shy man behind the swoosh” (Booklist, starred review), opening up about how he went from being a track star at an Oregon high school to the founder of a brand and company that changed everything.

You must forget your limits.

It was only when Nike founder Phil Knight got cut from the baseball team as a high school freshman that his mother suggested he try out for track instead. Knight made the track team and he found he could run fast and even more he liked it.

Ten years later, young and searching, Knight borrowed fifty dollars from his father and launched a company with one simple mission: import high quality running shoes from Japan. Selling the shoes from the trunk of his car to start, he and his gang of friends and runners built one of the most successful brands ever.

Phil Knight encountered risks and setbacks along the way, but always followed his own advice. Just keep going. Don’t stop. Whatever comes up, don’t stop. Filled with wisdom, humanity, humor, and heart, the young readers edition of the bestselling Shoe Dog is a story of determination that inspires all who read it.

The Young Reader’s Edition is an abridged version of the internationally bestselling adult book and it features original front matter and back matter, including a new introduction and “A Letter to the Young Reader” containing advice from Phil Knight for budding entrepreneurs.
Phil Knight
La historia jamás contada detrás de Nike, la marca deportiva más icónica del mundo, narrada por su creador.

Uno de los libros favoritos de Bill Gates de 2016.

Phil Knight, director general de Nike, nos cuenta por primera vez la auténtica historia detrás de la empresa que fundó en 1962, que hoy en día factura más de 30.000 millones de dólares al año, y cuyo logo ha llegado a ser un símbolo global, el icono más ubicuo y reconocido en todo el mundo.

Todo comenzó con 50 dólares y una idea sencilla: importar calzado deportivo económico y de gran calidad desde Japón. Vendiendo esas zapatillas de deporte en el maletero de su coche consiguió facturar 8.000 dólares durante el primer año. Progresivamente, este pequeño negocio se convirtió en una start-up rompedora que revolucionó el mercado, creó una marca universal e innovadora y evolucionó hasta convertirse en el gigante actual.

En estas memorias sinceras y viscerales, Phil Knight relata los numerosos riesgos asumidos, los reveses sufridos y los incipientes éxitos, pero sobre todo la relación con sus primeros colaboradores y empleados, un grupo de inconformistas y luchadores que acabaron sintiéndose como hermanos. Juntos, animados por la fuerza de un objetivo común y una fe profunda en el espíritu del deporte, construyeron una marca que transformó todos los cánones establecidos.

Reseñas:
«Estas memorias, por el co-fundador de Nike, es un recordatorio refrescante y honesto de lo que realmente es el camino hacia el éxito empresarial: desordenado, precario y lleno de errores. He coincidido con Knight varias veces en los últimos años. Él es muy agradable, pero también es tranquilo y difícil de conocer. Aquí Knight se abre de una manera que pocos CEOs están dispuestos a hacer. No creo que Knight se proponga enseñar nada al lector. En su lugar, logra algo mejor. Él cuenta su historia con la mayor honestidad posible. Es una historia increíble.»
Bill Gates

«Conozco a Phil Knight desde que era niño, pero en realidad no lo descubrí hasta que abrí este magnífico libro íntimo. Lo mismo me ha ocurrido con Nike. Había usado su material con orgullo, pero desconocía la admirable historia de innovación, superación y éxito que se escondía detrás del símbolo de esta marca. Sincera, entretenida y elegante, esta es una memoria para todos aquellos a quienes les guste el deporte, pero sobre todo para quienes adoran las memorias.»
Andre Agassi, autor del bestseller Open

«Nunca te pares es una magnífica historia sobre la suerte, el coraje, el aprendizaje y la alquimia mágica de un puñado de personajes excéntricos que se reunieron para crear Nike. Las lecciones que encontramos en este libro acerca de la emprendeduría y los obstáculos que vamos encontrando cuando queremos crear algo nuevo no tienen precio.»
Abraham Verghese, autor de Hijos del ancho mundo

«Una conmovedora y entretenida aventura, una auténtica odisea con mucho que enseñar sobre innovación y creatividad. Phil Knight nos lleva hasta los inicios de la marca Nike y recuerda cómo tuvo que suplicar para conseguir dinero de unos bancos muy reacios y cómo tuvieron que trabajar juntos para construir algo único y revolucionario. Una inspiración para quienes tengan sueños poco convencionales.»
Michael Spence, Premio Nobel de Economía

Phil Knight
Als junger, abenteuerlustiger Business-School-Absolvent auf der Suche nach einer Herausforderung lieh Phil Knight sich von seinem Vater 50 Dollar und gründete eine Firma mit einer klaren Mission: qualitativ hochwertige, aber preiswerte Laufschuhe aus Japan importieren. In jenem ersten Jahr, 1963, verkaufte Knight Laufschuhe aus dem Kofferraum seines Plymouth Valiant heraus und erzielte einen Umsatz von 8000 Dollar. Heute liegen die Jahresumsätze von Nike bei über 30 Milliarden Dollar. In unserem Zeitalter der Start-ups hat sich Knights Firma Nike als Maßstab aller Dinge etabliert und sein "Swoosh" ist längst mehr als nur ein Logo. Es ist ein Symbol von Geschmeidigkeit und Größe, eines der wenigen Icons, die in jedem Winkel unseres Erdballs sofort wiedererkannt werden. Aber Knight selbst, der Mann hinter dem Swoosh, ist immer ein Geheimnis geblieben. Jetzt erzählt er endlich seine Geschichte. Seine Memoiren sind überraschend, bescheiden, ungeschönt, humorvoll und handwerklich meisterhaft. Den Anfang markiert eine klassische Situation am Scheideweg. Der 24-jährige Knight bereist als Rucksacktourist Asien, Europa und Afrika, ihn bewegen die ganz großen philosophischen Fragen des Lebens. Und er entscheidet sich für einen unkonventionellen Lebensweg. Anstatt für ein großes etabliertes Unternehmen zu arbeiten, beschließt er, etwas ganz Eigenes zu schaffen – etwas, das neu, dynamisch und anders ist. En détail beschreibt Knight die vielen unberechenbaren Risiken, mit denen er sich auf seinem Weg konfrontiert sah, die niederschmetternden Rückschläge, die skrupellosen Konkurrenten, die zahllosen Zweifler und Widersacher, die abweisenden Banker, die etlichen Male, wo er knapp einer Katastrophe entging, ebenso wie seine vielen triumphalen Erfolge.
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