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We're in the New York still are coming -- the whole foods stores you have.
Eight and how many -- food stores worldwide.
How many holes which were -- -- -- 347.
Now what people may not know what -- will -- read your book that this started in a very sort of almost in the garage this business right.
Not quite like Apple Computer not -- -- garage but we did start in their old house.
That there was only a few thousand square feet back in 1978.
-- -- -- in webpart -- caught my attention at the beginning you're actually ever do like take your showers in the dishwasher that was the house's call safer way and.
My girlfriend who -- from the company with me we lived on the third floor.
And there was no bath or showers in the in the store so we.
We had a baby get into climate -- -- or dishwasher.
Thank -- hang down and we showers there and then the businesses in this -- that -- -- had some Iraqis -- got to -- Yes when we relocated that's sort of Whole Foods Market Austin had a hundred year flood 1981 we -- in the water stored quickly wiped out bankrupt.
The people you talk about all the people who came in and help once that -- lot.
That it was almost at a breaking point at least -- in your book that the business could have gone belly up that.
It could -- we were bankrupt.
And it was I was no one was more surprised me when we came in the next day and there were dozens of customers there helping us clean up the store.
And because what they do it because they -- us they'd they'd pull that it was important.
They didn't want us to die -- -- we were to death experience here and they hadn't helped us there may not be able -- for him to talk much right now.
Is that part of -- the conscious capitalism because a lot of people -- it you know.
At least very in this 1970s.
-- certainly the other.
Left people thought that capitalism was the greedy people of the -- the people are trying to squeeze every dime out of somebody else but your book talks about conscious cap.
-- which is something different yes.
Well I think the critics of capitalism have have hijacked the narrative that they.
They judge -- by the worst practitioners by the Bernie made off me Enron's and they treat businesses basically selfish.
Reading and exploitation.
And it doesn't have to be that way business is the greatest greater value in the world helped lift humanity out of out of poverty in the prosperity.
And we're making tremendous progress due to business capital heavy always felt that way about -- -- -- the -- embraced it not that it was something that was inspiring.
And it looked at people up what happened -- when I was young I.
Believed in the the myth that business was selfish and greedy and I certainly didn't want to be a business person.
-- never never my ambition but once I did it's what we did start whole foods and I had to meet a payroll.
And I was having trouble and -- we had.
Our team members wanted more money higher pay in our customers our prices were too high and suppliers we were small -- when he gives discounts -- it we lost.
Half of the capital we have 45000 dollars for it would -- lost 23000 in the first year.
Rene and I -- got paid 200 dollars a month and people were still saying I was I was you know kind of a bad guy now because I was a business person so I.
Throughout that philosophy didn't work.
And I began to read widely and I read a number of free market economists like Friedrich Hayek and -- -- my nieces.
Very rock -- I discovered that.
These explanations of the world work a lot better.
Philosophy that I had previously I learned that business is the greatest value creator in the world.
We great night for customers employees for suppliers for investors for -- communities that were part of business people her -- it.
Not a bad guys -- the good guys.
So happened between 1978.
When you're starting a small house and taking showers and and dishwasher -- now this -- this huge stored.
All right three a -- -- fifty stores.
Around the world you want but.
34 years history here.
-- -- -- at 34 years of history.
I guess we we.
Part of it is that we had we're lucky we are -- and good business the right time and sort of took off.
The other part explanation is is that we learned a lot we became very good at what we are doing we became.
Good grocers and ends.
We learn -- different way of doing business which is part of what we outline of the book on conscious capitalism.
When the season be different business model than your typical -- -- -- always think of protesters and a very small margin of profit.
Popular on this story and I've been involved with stores -- we have one of course everyone watching -- -- And this seizing more of a community aspect that I know what it is but the -- -- apartment community and choppers hit.
That's deliberate that's not accidental that starts with our philosophy that a business -- potential level higher purpose whole foods is not just about making money.
We actually really do you wanna help people live healthier lives to avoided being overweight obese beating heart -- Cancer we care about our team members I realized early on that.
This secret to success in business is happy customers.
But the secret to happy customers.
Happy employees so happy employees results and happy customers which -- happy investors have a virtuous circle.
As it has business been -- -- -- and specifically been demonized.
It's blamed for all the problems that are in the world.
When in fact capitalism is mostly the solutions to most problems world what what's wrong in the world is not that there's too much capitalism.
The problem in the world is not enough.
Where does where's the problem than -- how come so many people.
Can't seem to make it in business and in the lobby would do make it but a lot people don't -- -- We live in a competitive market.
A place where.
Customers get to vote if you don't create value for them -- gonna they're gonna go to your competitors.
So that's a great thing about business competition forces business to improve and get better.
And if it doesn't if you can't.
-- better your competitors do a better job than you you basically get voted out of out of existence get voted out of business that's how we make progress in our society.
I think the government could be in the way hurt -- very helpful depending on your viewpoint compare for instance found that.
The current decade business with a prior decades we have regulations entries and they made it easier -- to work.
Well regulations and increased every year since I got in the business regulations or something that.
They don't get right up on -- -- -- went wrong.
That's one of the things we need to reform we -- ways to get -- -- bad regulations.
Instead they just layer on a lot harder to start a business today.
That was when I started -- business 34 years ago.
-- consider civil libertarians at a -- politically is that where you are.
They're so much baggage -- term that I oftentimes don't identify with that anymore actually nothing of myself as a conscious capitalist.
And that is defined as what I know that that's the name of the book is but the fine him for me I'm conscious capitalism.
Recognizes the business has potential for higher purpose besides just maximizing profits and making money.
It creates value for all the shareholders not just the investors.
To different philosophy of leadership where that leader serves the enterprise is not just trying to line their own pockets.
-- fourth you have to create a culture that empowers people and allow human beings to flourish.
Hit it publicly owned business out that -- I'm conscious effort to explain to me is that if they've ever aboard.
The executive the company they -- their.
Make a decision that's gonna maximize profits are they can make one that may be something that they think -- -- him.
Politically with them whether it's for the environment or for a good health whenever.
Is that part of -- -- they make a decision not just to go over the apps that dollar.
Cautious -- and kind -- reject the premise behind that question.
Is that the premise is that -- there's tradeoffs and you have to negotiate between the trade -- that you're doing something for the environment that must becoming expensive to investors.
The secret is a conscious.
Who good conscious leadership is that is to -- win win win strategies.
So that all of the stakeholders simultaneously winning.
That sometimes not easy requires imagination and creativity but that's -- secret.
I thought when you take a look at some of these big companies big change that one of the problems is that when the original.
The very know that -- the company -- That suddenly some of the bride in the company is done.
You know being a mom pop star -- -- there and they're very proud -- that that you like your product they don't like he can return it and I give your money back or something.
It seems to me that some of these giant corporations have probably forgotten customer and that in some ways and one -- -- -- that you still being here.
Is the pride factor.
It is totally unconcerned about I think.
When you -- companies like -- your child you you want your child to grow up and flourish and you want to outlive you.
So it would be horrible if I left whole -- and it started to fall apart I don't think that's gonna happen got a great leadership team.
But I do think it's something be concerned about I've seen some great companies.
Big bad leadership -- great icons like Hewlett-Packard for him.
One of the greatest -- ever created in America but had a series of bad leadership decisions in the company's decline as a result -- an -- business.
I admire a lot of people in business I admire.
I admired Steve Jobs we -- to great entrepreneur I didn't necessarily -- thing about me but I think like straight on her Meyer.
Warren Buffett are and I admire Howard Schultz starve our actions and -- -- it Costco.
Historical figures people like Walt Disney -- an amazing we -- so I admire rocker partners -- ask the question who would you most like to have dinner with.
-- -- -- series of launch partners.
Also somebody like a Bill Gates I admire I admire William Warren Buffett and others.
How can I ask this question back in 1975.
Rain it wouldn't answer would be the ticket buyer.
-- 22 years old left -- Musician I admire that Beatles and the -- loses.
I mean you know I.
Had a much more superficial view of the world back and I presidency might we ever have imagined sent -- -- businessman.
No if you told me probably.
This early seventy's how my life was gonna turn out I probably would have.
I would have been too scared I might run a way to Europe taking your identity I think corporate perfect tax issues.
On about our corporate accurate.
Course are we have a highest corporate tax rates in the entire world now Japan used to be number one in US was number two they cut their rates and now he combined state.
And federal taxes.
-- corporate tax rates in the world that affect your business to get any apparent success -- rich Manning -- this is growing so how does affect you and your employees well every dollar we pay in taxes.
Is a dollar that.
Get back to the customers and lower prices the dollar we can't cater our team members -- higher higher wages and benefits it's a dollar that we can't.
Get back to suppliers -- what would.
Or prices that the dollar that we can't donate Philanthropic -- other organizations all the stakeholders loose -- higher taxes.
I did this of this controversy and -- and -- -- -- -- that I think you called me yet Obama here I think the term used was.
Fascism -- about that went back -- them.
That was a very poor choice of words on my part.
I have to ask the question the differences I think -- -- socialistic and I.
Gave a definition of socialism in the definition fashion -- -- -- closer to that.
However -- I didn't realize how many people have so much emotional baggage with that term dating back to Germany.
And Spain and Italy in World War II that's just a loaded word.
Very politically and correct can't use it.
So now I just wanna say I'm I believe free enterprise capitalism -- conscious capitalism and the way we've articulated in the book.
My problem with -- health -- is it's it's very government control and it's becoming more government control so it's the opposite free enterprise capitalist.
What's the problem was that how does it fit in how I think you're not a fan of obamacare -- read your op Ed about a year and a half ago in the Wall -- you know.
Why don't you like Obama again.
Well I think it's raising the cost.
We have a great health care plan that our team members vote on every three years meaning your employees and health what -- they like it.
It's it's been a good -- able to customize it keep it very affordable.
And it's and we can include everybody sort of really good point.
And now with the Health Care Reform.
They're adding additional cost on to it like we have to cover free.
Check ups -- -- up to be free for physical things like that cover people that are up to age 26 even though they're just dependents have grown up.
Those are free -- cost us.
Now there's going to be with lobbying and crony capitalism now that health care act you can see lots of new mandates put on -- -- determine what we can do so our freedom.
To customize our health care plan to do the best for our team members has been compromised.
Do you point out why the added benefit analysis can be someone's -- -- pick up the cost is they are you are somebody is an app.
But do -- not like he's added benefits that you -- Obama here.
If you get -- choice and said would you rather have this benefit -- would you rather be pay an extra twenty cents an hour.
They would ever be paid extra points and now he wouldn't say I want this because everybody doesn't -- it -- But later -- when it becomes sixty virus seven iron to announce I'm certain age related issue -- was the favorite.
You're asked me for the entire solution in health care plan open -- markets planes partial solution we don't hold it up -- totals.
I've written about it but given lots of ideas about how we could reform and to make it better.
I would refer.
Audience to those that writings I have -- my block -- -- And it in this this this health care.
Is a growing nightmare for a lot of businesses.
Because of the cops now.
And where we have people -- -- -- of what has -- into the business give a sense of how it's going to affect.
You know I've been -- in two years -- years of Gloria I can tell you what generally will happen.
As the cost go up.
You're not required to provide -- injured for part time workers those who work under thirty hours.
So there's going to be a strong temptation for businesses.
To keep people under thirty hours they'll have to provide health care.
-- -- a lot more part time workers and a lot -- you full time workers are gonna a lot of people that are underemployed.
Whole foods is -- itself that we voice had.
Much higher mix of full time to part time workers like we're like 80% full time -- 20% part -- which is very rare retail.
But I suspect is our health care costs are driven up by their health care reforms in -- more expensive that will wind up.
Gradually lowering our full time ratio too much lower number.
I'm looking it's our customers we are your vegetables and -- so are -- -- -- that I'm pretty.
I love being in the stores that's where the life of the company is beautiful.
Customers -- -- -- members -- are just wonderful people it's it's I love what I do I love.
So proud of whole foods -- a -- team members are much dependent for the grand adventure I would I'm very very happy and begin.
-- now for ten years -- I don't want to have to kill animals -- have been killed for me you don't need to -- animals to be healthy so if you're -- and it's primarily.
Simply for the pleasure of it.
I can't justify killing animals -- for the pleasure of eating and yet you will sell that here.
Our customers want those products and basically 95% of our customers -- and -- so we didn't sell and we'd be out of this.
-- -- -- with this business was our biggest headache yet.
And it looks -- success well it's a beautiful colors of the fruit the customers of the times -- customers in here but there must be some.
Then something is a little attic -- the at a company.
I mean there's -- -- problems in any any kind of business.
I suppose my biggest concerns are I mean we still have that you got a large you have to pay a lot more attention to a lot of regulations and I think probably.
You get sued more because you have deeper pockets.
Get -- more more depositions by lawyers and and suppose the bureaucracy in the hassles that are the least fun part when I was younger and more -- an entrepreneur.
We flew under the radar.
Hope this market does not fly under the radar this making casual comment on NPR sometime and you'll find out there to.
-- it becomes.
You know national news so that's kind of a headache in -- way.
This -- I'm a little bit and influenced -- little bit of fun but I mean we used when you get hate mail and people think you're monster in your views are all horrible crime -- on -- -- senior open this kind -- do you think that -- ideas are easily.
Converted to -- an industry absolutely and every night to hear about not just limited change your business.
Absolutely not I we wrote this book primarily to help businesses become more conscious.
I think capitalism is the greatest thing in the world that we can make it better.
-- businesses can become more conscious of their highest higher purposes and begin to create value for all their shareholders and all the stakeholders the -- gonna be transformed.
If you get them I'm mr.
President Obama talk about what would make it easier to -- to get more jobs in this country any excuse -- him.
Cut corporate income tax and -- back on the regulations let.
Entrepreneurs do their thing there -- creative individuals.
Think we can solve all the problems that are in the world -- our own creative entrepreneurship and through nonprofit.
And if we need to liberate.
The entrepreneurial spirit when you deliberate -- -- roadster business icu and good luck in the book thanks -- -- to.