KIND Snacks Founder: Business Must Be a Force for Good [PSFK 2015]
This Friday, April 17, hear CEO and Founder of KIND Snacks on the creation of not-only-for-profit businesses
PSFK is proud to welcome CEO and Founder of KIND Snacks, Daniel Lubetzky to our flagship conference April 17 in New York City.
Daniel launched KIND 11 years ago with 10 healthy snack bars and a mission to make the world a little kinder. Over time he has helped nurture the brand into a movement encouraging conscious consumption and championing the notion that there is more to business than just profit.
Daniel captured the lessons learned along this journey in his recently published book, Do the KIND Thing—all proceeds of which, will be donated to individuals advancing the KIND Movement. Before Daniel joins us on stage at the conference to discuss his guiding principles and plans for the future, we had the opportunity to chat about how businesses can be a source of social good.
In the cover of your book, it says that you started KIND to create snack bars that are “both tasty and healthy, convenient and wholesome.” Why do you think it’s important to have a social mission at the core of a company?
I wouldn’t say it’s necessary for companies to have it, but if it speaks to you and if it’s authentic to you, then it’s very valuable to have because it gives you meaning. If it’s done as a marketing gimmick, then it probably is not going to carry authenticity.
Social meaning should be pursued because of what it is in and of itself, not to make your business stronger. If you pursue it for the right reasons, it will generate loyalty from your consumers. It’ll generate passion from your team.
We just did an internal survey on how much the KIND team connects to our mission, and I was surprised at the powerful responses. I’d never thought it would be as powerful as it was. I expected some level of connection to our social mission, but it was far greater than I thought.
Now that KIND is 11 years into its journey, you’ve shown that a wholesome, responsible brand can also be profitable. What’s next for the company?
Our ambition at KIND is not to be seen just as a great product or a company that people love, or a product that they’re passionate about, but as a movement. We want to transcend the way people have defined businesses up until now and redefine the way people see companies like ours. We want to be seen not just as a company but as a state of mind—a movement that people feel a part of.
We’re just at the beginning of that journey, but it’s much more likely that five, 10, 20 years from now we’re going to become what we want to become if people understand where we’re aiming and where we’re heading. We really want to share our philosophy, our aspirations and what we’re trying to achieve to increase the likelihood that people are going to want to join us on that journey to celebrate and inspire kindness in the world.
By becoming a movement, it sounds like KIND is blending business and social activism. Do you think more businesses should use their influence to prompt societal change?
I do think that in this day and age, it’s good for society if all of us recognize the power of market forces to transform society for the better, and with that power, the responsibility that comes alongside it.
If we’re going to tackle the big challenges that are going to be confronting society in the coming days and decades, from climate change to nuclear proliferation, to xenophobia to resource scarcity and on and on and on, the best chance we have is recognizing our shared responsibility as a human race, and for us to deploy market forces which are more scalable and more leveragable to address those solutions in a sustainable way.
It’s good for society if businesses end up recognizing that power and potential.
To hear Daniel and PSFK’s selection of thought leaders, change-makers, and creators inspire new ideas on how to live, work, and play better, join us at our conference April 17 in New York City. Tickets are available now.