Created in 2006 by entrepreneur Blake Mycoskie after a trip to Argentina, TOMS Shoes is definitely a front-runner on the topic of ideal stakeholder management. The company prides itself on its socially-responsible business model which entails giving a pair of shoes away to needy children around the globe for every shoe purchased – a concept coined as, “One for One”. TOMS has enveloped a strategy to center their corporate structure around philanthropy, yet operationally has generated insurmountable profit for itself, internal, and external stakeholders

On the distribution floor of TOMS

With this focus on stakeholder management, TOMS has integrated it’s model around employee rights, fair trade, and poverty reduction. These platforms allowed the company to gain even more attention from the media, expand into eye wear,  and even allowed the company to stay afloat during the recession. TOMS’ sustained growth and proactive corporate governance structure establishes the success of the company with their “One to One” strategy.

There are a multitude of stakeholders who affect and are affected by TOMS’ strategies. Some of the internal stakeholders are Mycoskie, the manufactures, and the employees, who all benefit from fair labor standards. External stakeholders include any entity benefiting from TOMS at the receiving end. For example, this would include various humanitarian organizations  local manufactures, and consumers. It is so unusual that a for-profit organization like TOMS prioritizes the interests of its stakeholders, namely it’s beneficiaries and not it’s shareholders, as most companies would have it. I would go so far as to argue that TOMS is really a successful business in NGO‘s clothing..(wolf in sheep’s clothing…you guys get it)

About Steph P.

Business Government and Society

8 responses »

  1. oliviabratt says:

    Hey there! I’m a TOMS fan applying to go on the Giving Trip and if I could have your vote, that would be awesome. It’s a really easy process. Just go to the link hit the green “vote for me” button, log in with FB or google, and then hit the “vote for me” button again and see the number go up. If you could spread this around, that would be great! Thank you!!

  2. Loukas T says:

    TOMS shoes is really the extreme of a stakeholder focused company. Their entire business model is based on helping others, whether it be employees, workers, or just aide in general. This company is on the border between a private for-profit institution and a charitable non-profit. I actually had not heard about this company until I came to Bucknell, but I love what they do.

  3. eric says:

    TOMs is a great example of what an enlightened 21st century company should look like. Perhaps this movement – towards DOING SOMETHING GOOD with your abilities – will be our generations stamp on the world. Running with our conversation last week, I’ve always believed that government is the worst way to get almost anything decidedly “good” done. And the argument – well, it wouldn’t get done if not for the government – in some cases like roads and education, yes, when the government can affect short-term projects and changes that have significantly positive long-term effects, that’s great. But things like helping our fellow humans is best left to those who really want to help!

    We are giving out too many fish and people are choosing to forget how to fish..
    America needs to regain its ethos: self-reliance, industriousness, innovation.

    But TOMs is different, the kids they provide shoes to don’t have the metaphorical fishing poles, bait, or hooks to fish these metaphysical fish.
    Now, the role of government? Help get the word out, that THESE KIND of companies are changing the world (and make a category for a “do good” tax break) and entitlements won’t be necessary. You know, people had to hunt for food not that long ago….

  4. wesmw says:

    When thinking of a company to chose for this blog I definitely considered researching Toms because of their well known initiatives. Toms is a company that should serve as a model for others. As you explain, they don’t only take into account their own employees, but also the environments that they operate in. With that said, I think that Toms has widely been able to achieve their selective initiatives because they are not publicly traded. Consequently, maybe being privately held is the ideal way for a business to operate.

  5. Jordi says:

    I wonder if TOm’s of Maine is every annoyed about how TOMS shoes kind of poaches on its name.

    Tom’s of Maine is OLDER and has been doing good work for awhile.

  6. Jordi says:

    Really, TOMS shoes is a whole new kind of entity- a social enterprise.

  7. Jordi says:

    You can embed youtube videos…

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