william-sonoma

Building business by building a brand

When Howard Lester joined William-Sonoma, it was a very small business which was losing money. In this interview Howard Lester talks about transforming Williams-Sonoma into a business with revenues approaching $4 billion annually, through branding, innovation, and cultivating customer loyalty. Lester tells how introducing catalog sales and online shopping were major contributions to the success of the business and enabled larger economies of scale. Additionally, Lester talks about the use of customer service centers, broadening the span of customer demographics, and its acquisition of Pottery Barn.

Interview Aired: 12/02/2007