Cool Thing #17: “LOVE THE PRODUCT” DAY

Last week we talked about getting closer to suppliers, inspired by John Winzeler, CEO of Winzeler Gear. He also inspired the recollection of this ONE COOL THING….

When Charlie Hughes started the American division of Land Rover, he hosted a retreat for all employees. But instead of the usual PowerPoint test of mental endurance, he decided to hold a LOVE THE PRODUCT Day.

He wanted to share with everyone the excitement of off-roading in a Range Rover, so he got his engineers to rent a backhoe and turn an empty field into an off-road test track.

Here’s a thought: Most all-hands meetings include a discussion of the (yawn!) Mission Statement. What if instead this was your mission: To make products so good our customers love them and do the selling for us.

That driving experience was so powerful it led to the company creating test tracks at dealerships. After all, you want potential customers to have their own falling-in-love experience.

You might be thinking, “Well, sure, you can have a Love The Product event IF you have a consumer product like a Range Rover.”

Hold on.

That brings us to back to our gear entrepreneur, John Winzeler. He has made plastic gears, mostly for the auto industry, into something lovable.

  • He commissions gear art.
  • He had a fashion designer create dresses made of gears.
  • He has an art gallery in a gear factory.
  • He’s turned gears into key rings and earrings.

    (You can check out more at )

Liquid Gears Art Wall10
Liquid Gears
ENGEL+Monica GearDress Mar14'

That’s loving the product, even when it seems unlovable.


When you talk to John Winzeler about gears, you feel the love. These are gears. Gears.

Whatever it is you sell, you have no excuse.

If you can’t love the product or the service, either make it lovable or make it go away. Love it or leave it.

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