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Business as Unusual

3.94  ·  Rating Details  ·  159 Ratings  ·  18 Reviews
This book charts the story of Anita Roddick and her company, The Body Shop, through the lows and highs of the last decade.
Paperback, 304 pages
Published April 25th 2000 by Thorsons Publishers (first published 2000)
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Taiki Namiki
Jun 30, 2008 Taiki Namiki rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An entrepreneur, Anita Roddick tells us about her spirit in this book.

She has been chalenging a lot of typical social images.
According to her, real unique ideas are not accepted by anyone at the first time. Everyone opposes to it and tries to find a faults of that idea. However, as it goes on, some people start to follow or support it. The important thing is that not to stop creating unique idea out of other's opposition.

She was born in a family that was running a restaurant. Therefore, from
Sep 25, 2012 Susan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What an inspiring woman was Anita Roddick. The book took me a while to get into, because the first section is more like a lecture on why ethical business practices are important. However, I am already a convert, so the lecture was unnecessary.

The meat of the book was incredibly interesting. Anita tells the story of how The Body Shop came to be, the growth, the change, the mistakes they made, and the success. It just reaffirms that I will be a Body Shop customer for life. It also makes me want t
Kim Olson
At a time when many companies are trying to be more socially responsible, my thoughts have been turning to Anita Roddick (sadly, no longer with us), who founded the first company of scale to really walk the walk. Not satisfied with mere social responsibility, The Body Shop actually stepped it up a notch by getting politically engaged--and encouraging its customers to, as well--often to harsh criticism and even threats. Roddick was uncompromising in her commitment, and the company culture she cre ...more
Cambridge Programme for Sustainability Leadership
One of Cambridge Sustainability's Top 50 Books for Sustainability, as voted for by our alumni network of over 3,000 senior leaders from around the world. To find out more, click here.

Business as Unusual is part autobiography, part business biogrpahy and part manifesto for how business can be an agent for positive change in the world. The book is presented in a highly visual style and is story-driven, with countless interesting anecdotes. Roddick's key message is that, by expanding the role and r
Kenia Perez
Jul 29, 2011 Kenia Perez rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Wow, Anita Roddick definitly took business to a whole new social and political level. She's definitely a die-hard activist. Although I don't know if I could have that same attitude and boldness, and I didn't agree with everything she wrote about, I have a tremendous amount of respect for her because she stands up tall for what she believes in. I truly hope more and more businesses follow her example and become more socially and environmentally responsible. In fact, some are already moving in tha ...more
Jun 14, 2008 Jene rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I met Anita back in 2003. She was a host for a small fund raiser for the nonprofit I ran and I was immediately blown away by her. We sat in a corner and talked for what seemed like hours, but was not nearly long enough. She inspired me to always try to do more.

She had the courage to stand up for her convictions. She has been a hero of mine for a very long time, but to meet her changed everything.

Yes, she made mistakes - and this book talks about those. but she was human and she was embarking on
Vikas Gupta
I expected it to be more like Howard Schultz's book on Starbucks, explaining how she started The Body Shop, and her journey. I was also hoping that she would somewhere mention of the Shop from where she took the idea of The Body Shop, but she claims the store as her own idea.

Also, at times the book becomes boring and starts preaching too much about how to do a business being cognizant of community, people, etc. And the fact that Roddick sold off The Body Shop to L'Oreal- the exact type of multin
Linda Robinson
Jan 27, 2010 Linda Robinson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Anita Roddick created a business model for the new millennium. We need more entrepreneurs just like her, who are audacious enough to insist on earth-friendly, "cradle to cradle" manufacturing processes that protect our environment, who altruistically create other businesses in that same realm, and who care fiercely about value and purity of product. This is her story, including the clear-eyed observation of how she had to get out of her own way. I wish she was still with us.
Apr 19, 2013 Rose rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting and there is no denying that Roddick was a pioneer in her time. However, she comes across as both self-righteous and judgemental. Ultimately it's hard to believe in her fully given her sell out to L'Oreal in 2006 - exactly the sort of global organisation she rails against for much of the book. Actions speak louder than words.
Mar 22, 2008 Paul rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested in business ethics and values
Great book from a very passionate and incredible person. You'll learn how sometimes business isnt planned and the way things end up are just fate. The Body Shop is a great company and it's a sad thing that Anita is no longer with us but she left an incredible legacy.
Sarah Vendetti
Jan 23, 2008 Sarah Vendetti rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Girls - you want a role model in business? Want a role model for innovation and managment ideals?
READ! Then gab among your friends. The ideas she implemented were successes and flops. Worth a million words of discussion.
Oct 01, 2012 Keri rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I return to this book to understand why anyone is crazy enough to be an entrepreneur. You can make a difference, change, impact by the power of your purchase. A must read.
Cathy Rosenberg
May 19, 2008 Cathy Rosenberg rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
LOVED this book... she was a genius.. combining commercial success with heart and soul. The perfect recipe for integrity in a world where it's not so easy to find!
Aug 27, 2008 Ginny rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book led me to be the entrepreneur, leader and mentor that I am today...a must read! Especially for all you TBSAH consultants out there!
Aug 14, 2008 Beth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"The moral entrepreneur." She had courage, purpose, wisdom, foresight, and community spirit. A pleasure to read.
Sep 14, 2007 Elizabeth added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who wonders if their personal values can work within their business
After Roddick's death earlier this week, it is definitely a good time to re-visit this book.
Jan 21, 2008 Marijcke rated it really liked it
Shelves: business
Money and respect go together well!
Jun 09, 2012 Lisa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
An inspiring read!
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Dame Anita Roddick, DBE was a British businesswoman, human rights activist and environmental campaigner, best known as the founder of The Body Shop, a cosmetics company producing and retailing natural beauty products that shaped ethical consumerism. The company was one of the first to prohibit the use of ingredients tested on animals and one of the first to promote fair trade with third world coun ...more
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