What We Learned from the Past 10 Episodes of The Nordy Pod
Beauty industry titans, Nordstrom interns and customer service legends — they all make an appearance in episodes 11–20 of The Nordy Pod. Over the past few months, Pete Nordstrom, President and Chief Brand Officer of Nordstrom, sat down with more than 25 incredible guests. From his own brother (and Nordstrom CEO) Erik to WNBA legend Sue Bird to Steve Madden (yes, the Steve Madden), The Nordy Pod has featured some of the many people that help shape Nordstrom’s culture.
Twenty episodes in, we’re looking back on some of our favorite moments from the past few months of the pod. If you aren’t caught up, tune in here or wherever you get your podcasts.
Episode 11: Nordstrom CEO Erik Nordstrom joins his brother Pete to talk about their upbringing, the work they’ve done for the family business and their brother Blake.
- “Our dad [Bruce Nordstrom] was so clear in his example and in his words of, you know, the most important thing is you support your brothers, you support your family — that’s just that simple. And you guys — you and Blake — were always so great at trying to reinforce my strengths as opposed to pointing out what I wasn’t good at, and it does a lot for confidence and taking on new assignments and doing things that you’re not sure about.” – Erik Nordstrom
Episode 12: Aurora James and Emma Grede, founder and chairwoman, respectively, of the Fifteen Percent Pledge, sit down with Pete. They discuss their organization’s mission to challenge retailers to dedicate 15 percent of their shelf space to Black-owned businesses.
- “So far, through our contractual commitments, we’re moving over $10 billion to Black-owned businesses across this country, which is pretty monumental. It’s actually the single largest driver for Black American entrepreneurs that the country has ever seen.” – Aurora James
Episode 13: Chip Bergh, CEO of Levi Strauss & Co., talks about his efforts to revitalize the Levi’s brand, his company's dedication to supporting their community and the innovations they’ve adopted to improve sustainability in their supply chain.
- “It goes all the way back to the founder, Levi Strauss himself. The very first year he made a profit, he donated a percentage of the profit to a local charity. He believed — and we have believed since the inception of this company — that businesses exist more than just to make a buck for the shareholder, that businesses exist to make a difference in the world, to make a difference in their community.” – Chip Bergh
Episode 14: Craig Trounce, a former Nordstrom salesperson, tells the famous story about when he helped a customer return a pair of used tires. Robert Spector, author of a series of books called The Nordstrom Way, also sits down with Pete to share his perspective on the legendary “Tire Story.”
- “My grandmother from Germany had a saying — how you holler in the woods is how it echoes back. And I’ve always carried that with me throughout my life.” – Craig Trounce
Episode 15: Shortly after the launch of the ASOS | Nordstrom store in Los Angeles, a few of the key people behind the opening talk about the work that made it all possible.
- “It’s a moment in history for us, right? For ASOS, we’ve never had a physical presence anywhere in the world so to kind of be able to showcase our ASOS design, which is our jewel and our crown, I guess it’s testament to how much we value the partnership that we did that with you.” – Jo Christopher
Episode 16: This year’s summer interns and company veterans talk about the experience of working at Nordstrom, the invaluable lessons they’ve learned and the values that contribute to our culture.
- “The great thing that I’ve noticed here during this internship is that the same feeling that you have walking into the Nordstrom store is the same feeling you have walking into any of the corporate offices. It really feels amazing, and it’s something that is at the top of my list in terms of where I would want to work.” – TaNasha Hilton
Episode 17: Steve Madden, design chief of Steve Madden, talks about the evolution of his business, the challenges he’s overcome and the many lessons he’s learned in his storied career.
- “The reason that I have such a great business today was because I was forced to let go and hire a lot of great people — because, you know, I was a one-man band. And so I realized that if I was going away, I better have a deeper company. I was forced to have these great people, and there’s no way you can get big without a great team.” – Steve Madden
Episode 18: Three Nordstrom team members talk about their careers, what fashion means to them and the many ways they work to make an impact on our customers’ lives.
- “If you’re in it for the right reasons, if you’re in it for looking after those around you and you’re passionate about product and want to look after customers as much as possible, I’ve found Nordstrom to be a business that both enables and empowers that kind of thinking.” – Sam Lobban
Episode 19: Leonard Lauder, former CEO of The Estée Lauder Companies, discusses the early days of his family business and its rapid evolution into a beauty behemoth.
- “Even though our stock is doing very well and we’re doing very well, I miss the days when it was little. But you can’t turn around and go back again. You have to grow, and if you’re growing, make sure that you keep the same ideals ahead of you — great products and give to the right people.” – Leonard Lauder
Episode 20: Sue Bird, retired WNBA player for the Seattle Storm, discusses her upbringing, her development into a leader, equity and investment opportunities in women’s sports, her pursuits after the WNBA and the parallels between fashion and life.
- “Clothing to me is just another way to showcase who you are and the different sizes of your personality. There are times where you just want to be comfortable, right? And then there are times where you want to push the envelope a little bit and try something new. And that can be scary, but that’s how you find out. Think about life. If you don’t get out of your comfort zone and go try something new, you’re never going to really learn about yourself. And clothing is the same way.” – Sue Bird
You can hear the full interviews here or wherever you get your podcasts. Do you have feedback, suggestions, or stories that might be right for the pod? You can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave us a voicemail at 206.594.0526. If you’re willing to be featured in our podcast, please include your contact info so we can message you, and Pete may just give you a ring!