Complimentary Tailoring from Things You Didn't Know About Lululemon
Things You Didn't Know About Lululemon
If you look beyond the marketing copy of the company’s website, you might be be surprised to learn that the name Lululemon was selected probably not through a survey but for a much more controversial reason. In a 2004 edition of the National Post Business Magazine the company’s founder Chip Wilson was quoted as saying the following: “The reason the Japanese liked [my former skateboard brand, ‘Homeless’] was because it had an L in it and a Japanese marketing firm wouldn’t come up with a brand name with an L in it. L is not in their vocabulary. It’s a tough pronunciation for them. So I thought, next time I have a company, I’ll make a name with three Ls and see if I can get three times the money. It’s kind of exotic for them. I was playing with Ls and I came up with Lululemon. It’s funny to watch them try to say it.”
Apparently Lululemon employees uphold the healthy lifestyle preached by much of the brand’s marketing since nearly two-thirds of the staff at the company’s Store Support Center in Vancouver walk, bike, or take public transportation to work.
If you ever aspire to work at a Lululemon store, be prepared to put your goals and ambitions on display. Employees are required to set their short- and long-term goals in ink and post them in the store for everyone to see.
According to HRM Today, the company’s hiring process involves inviting interviewee’s to yoga classes and spin sessions so that managers can evaluate potential employees in different types of atmospheres.
Free Yoga for Everyone
All Lululemon stores offer free yoga classes to anyone who wishes to participate.
Despite a constant onslaught of negative attention last year, the company continues to profit. According to the most recent financial report: “Net revenue for the [2013 third] quarter increased 20% to $379.9 million from $316.5 million in the third quarter of fiscal 2012.”
Teach, Not Sell
Lululemon refers to its store employees not as sales associates but as “educators” because their main role is to inform customers about the product. “By educating guests we empower them to make decisions for themselves based on the facts that we offer them,” says the company’s website.
According to CNN, the company hooks its best customers by selling “wow items,” or exclusive products that are only available in stores for four to six weeks and never restocked.
“Lululemon paid for unlimited fitness classes for its employees: yoga, Pilates, dance, anything else. You'd just bring in your receipt and get reimbursed. I recently heard they changed the policy to a limited amount of classes per week,” one former employee told BusinessInsider.com.
The company’s current CEO, Laurent Potdevin, was once president of philanthropic shoe brand TOMS.