91 Comments

Comments

Ellen Lebelle says ...
Hello John, Well, since you wrote "Back to Blogging" you really have not come back to it. Please do. Things have been happening in the economy; things have been happening at Wholefoods (dropped dividend, for example). You must have something to say.
08/25/2008 3:58:21 AM CDT
Michael Smith says ...
Mr. Mackey, I shopped at WF once several years ago at the invitation of a friend who worked at your Pasadena CA market. I was impressed and bought some hair care products -thought you needed a small junk food selection though- and I was pleased with the experience. However I never began to shop there: 1) tight budget 2) not big on the importance of the "Organic" thing 3) a convenient Vons with a banking outlet. After hearing your WSJ OP-Ed piece discussed on talk radio and then reading it on line (as if I ever cared to wonder about the WF CEO's personal opinion of Pelosi-Reid-Obama-Care) I learned that my assumptions would have been wrong! I was impressed with your description of how "big-corporate" WF offers Health Care choice to your employees, and even more with your courage to speak out at a pivotal moment for the future of the US of America. I don’t want your corporate OPTIONS (or mine) to be levered away from your employees by the wrongheaded actions of an increasingly intrusive federal government -with the hubris to think that a collection of Policy makers (most with a Law Degree to their credit) and the ensuing huge tangle of faceless bureaucrats, who tend think that they know what’s best for everyone in every situation. Thank you for entering the fray and speaking out on this important matter. I will be countering the attempts to boycott WF by sending a few shopping dollars your way and by voicing my support for you, for any who have ears to hear and eyes to see. Stand firm; you did the right thing in this case. There are real problems with the “health care system” that need to be addressed. You make several points that I think both Left & Right can agree on, and that would go along way towards improving the current troubled parts of the status-quo. However do not miss one of the underlying meanings of this debate; the struggle between the Left and the Right forces of our time. In my opinion, it is largely between the “Collective Statist’s” –whom mostly have right-hearted motives, and the “Liberty-Free Marketers” –whom often need a high profile example (like WF and others), demonstrating how the better can be accomplished when the “Head” has a “Heart” but is not ruled by it. Good intentions (i.e. bringing peace and “Utopia” to mankind in our time) have regularly led to increased human misery. While not perfect, Capitalism -sometimes with a code of ethics and morality in practice- has done massive good for the human condition. Why do many Europeans clamor for the simple things like Whole Foods, and why are most European governments and Canada moving away from Socialized Healthcare and towards increased individual choice? Profit motivated corporate innovation in the Health Care arena alone, has demonstratively produced truly amazing results of improved living standards (things that my grandparents would have never dreamed possible). The socialist leaning democracies and countless others all over the world benefit from (and even feed off of) free market “profit motivated” innovation... and we should move in a direction that many of those who have tested the theory are now abandoning? Moreover, where it is being tried in the States it’s found wanting and in need of major revamping, or even abandoning. That’s silly –even arrogant. In the vein of Austin Powers, “Yeah ‘compassionate’ capitalism.” Yeah Whole Foods! My Gratitude, M.S.
08/30/2009 12:38:48 PM CDT
moises says ...
John, It is good to have you back. Hope you have time from your busy schedule to post more of your insightful material. My favorite is the one about the "Conscious Capitalism: Creating a New Paradigm for Business". Although I never got to meet you in person like Ken or Chris when I worked there, I always liked the philosophy that the company stood for. Keep the good work and please please keep on writing. Your material has inspired me to also make a blog of my own and write about stuff that I been wanting to write about. Cheers.
09/25/2008 3:25:33 PM CDT
sohbet says ...
everything here is sugarcoated and Yahoo terminated your ID for abuse of terms of service didn’t they? Next time abide by TOS.
09/28/2008 6:52:35 PM CDT
Taylor says ...
Why is this such a big deal?
09/29/2008 11:18:09 AM CDT
Arielle says ...
I love you John! Never let the haters get you down.
10/02/2008 1:30:55 PM CDT
Yeriel says ...
I cant believe this is such a big deal...seriously dude who cares if you pretended to be someone else and posted something mean about whole foods seriously...people write means things all the time...and no one cares!
10/02/2008 1:31:37 PM CDT
Jake S. says ...
Mr. Mackey, I just wanted to say that I respect what you have done to share your side of the story and to set the record straight. There is not enough transparency in the corporate world and reading your posts is a refreshing experience, one that is not common enough in the world today. Hopefully CEOs and upper management of other corporations will take note of how you are breaking down the barriers of opacity and will institute similar methods. In response to claims that your actions on the Yahoo! boards caused investors to be skittish and the Wild Oats stock prices to suffer, I offer my opinion. Firstly, the notion that the small amount of investors that read the Yahoo! boards would create enough of an impact to cause harm to the Wild Oats stock is absurd. And secondly, if those investors that are foolish enough to make important financial decisions based upon reading the postings of complete strangers, then that is just plain poor decision making and poor management of money. I sure hope that they would not be managing my investments. Keep up the good work and I look forward to doing business with Whole Foods in the future!
10/28/2008 1:41:56 AM CDT
Ronnie M says says ...
John,you're welcome back.When you're suceesful, poeple will tend to look for faults to bring you down.You just have to be strong and you need to concentrate, there will be critics,there is nothing wrong in saying things out the way you feel or see it,by blogging,its not a big deal.Once again thanks for the good stuff you bring into WF,ive not seen any match for it.I admire you .
11/13/2008 11:24:55 PM CST
RisingDamp666 says ...
With WFMI shares now fallen below the Wild Oats acquisition price ($18.50), less sophisticated people will probably interpret this as some kind of judgement of that deal as well as "Whole Paycheck", that tired perception about the prices at WFM. The problem is that perception becomes reality. Whole Foods is going through the most challenging times in its history. There is no room in this economy for false optimism or denial. What will emerge at the other end of this period will be a changed company. My guess is that WFM will be smaller and more focused in areas that are resistant to declining spending such as NYC. Management at the store level will have to be sharper, more experienced, and able to quickly adapt to changing conditions. Overall, this company will have to be nimble. The future of the natural grocery business rides on WFM's success at adapting to what could be some very tough times.
10/05/2008 10:00:05 AM CDT
Emma says ...
I trust a CEO who is so willing to explain himself and his actions and intentions openly, much more than I trust average CEO who his lying about his balance sheets right before the company is about to fold. Regarding the poster who suggested taking down the light fixtures and in store displays to lower costs, DON'T LISTEN. Every store out there is already like that. Whole Foods is my oasis. There's nothing like it.
10/07/2008 6:46:52 PM CDT
JenniferLedet says ...
Mr.Mackey, Thank you for going on the record with your explanation and thoughts on the whole situation. Whether they argree with you or not, folks should appreciate the transparency. This is exactly what the blog is intented for: to share your thoughts and whats on your mind. Keep at it!
10/15/2008 11:33:33 AM CDT
Nathan Conrad says ...
Thanks for your awesome blog John!!! Whole Foods is an awesome company and you have been a great leader!
10/20/2008 12:22:41 AM CDT
Marjo Rautaoja says ...
I have recently found your blog and I am very excited that a person who is a CEO of a big company has the passion and heart towards his work. I am also a business owner and CEO in Europe and I believe that when you are true to your heart and speak out what you believe in people will hear it in their hearts. So I am happy you still continue to speak through your blog. I wish that Whole Foods would come to Europe as well. People here needs and wants a store chain like that.
10/20/2008 4:04:58 AM CDT
SL28ave says ...
I keep going back to Whole Foods because of black mission figs, guavas, the new Locally Known spinach, perfect organic mangos (sometimes), Allegro Kenya (and certain other essential brands), etc. Sometimes I go to a "normal" grocery store because my family does. The other day my dad criticized me about going to WF just for spinach, "It's the same spinach quality at both stores." I wanted to respond that WF is run by a progressive figure who cares about some things more than simply money, but stopped short because I didn't feel like I knew Mr. Mackey well enough. At least for me, this blog helps bridge that gap in a good way... Forums in general aren't as powerful and representative as many people think. Of course people can anonymous-post, depending on the context... there are many kinds of and purposes for communication. I wonder if RisingDamp666 is an anonymous board member, hehe.
10/21/2008 9:49:03 PM CDT
RisingDamp666 says ...
@SL28ave, No, I am not a member of the board but thank you for your kind comments about Whole Foods. No one where I shop has better produce than Whole Foods and Allegro Coffee is wonderful! Have you tried the Italian Roast? John Mackey is by far the most progressive minded CEO of any company, especially a company of the scale of WFM. His ideas are stimmulating, challenging and in these times, more relevant than ever. We are on the cusp of new paradigms in the way we view ourselves, our world and its leaders. John Mackey presents a clear new direction for all of us and I hope that the world is listening!
10/22/2008 5:35:02 PM CDT
Nancy says ...
Kudos to you John. Thanks for taking the time to relay your own perspective. I don't think there's anything wrong with someone that cares about their company that much - it's rather refreshing and admirable. I also think that it's unfortunate that many people that simply don't understand online communities. Looks like a mountain out of a molehill to me. It's absurd to think that one run-of-the-mill user would influence anyone - let alone an entire market place. That's nuts! You're sucess has been about doing something you love better than the rest - and WFM faithful get that. Thanks you!
11/07/2008 9:34:08 PM CST
Mike S says ...
John- The stock market might be wounded, but the spirit of debate in America is alive and well! I shop at Whole Foods and try to take care of myself with as little medicine as possible. Please keep the lights, but try not to move the green tea any more! (JK) Seeing these posts has given me a small glimpse of John Mackey. I know a company, Ruane Communications near Atlanta, that puts together high-quality documentaries of people's lives for them to share with their families and employees. I think John Mackey would be a GREAT story of vision and inspiration, including the response from this recent inquiry. Only thing is I would not get to see it because it is private. This approach takes "the media" out of the process of telling your story. Best! Mike
11/20/2008 3:30:56 PM CST
Ron Jones says ...
Ever heard of conflict of interest, Mr. Mackey? Your behavior on this blog is not defensible, and your lame attempt here to justify it 'doth protest too much'.
08/15/2009 3:51:28 AM CDT
Allan Hewitt says ...
Congratulations Mr. Mackey; If enough of the Corporate CEO had the intestinal fortitude and insight you have as it relates to the health care issue, we could get something done other than government control over the entire medical industry. You recommendations were common sense and free market approaches to a situation where control is the only option by congress. Common sense and reasonable approaches are sorely lacking in DC. I will shop at your store every chance I get. Thanks Again for saying what the majority of Americans think.
08/16/2009 6:49:06 AM CDT
judithrowe says ...
As both a stockholder and a customer I would like to advise John to stick to running the company. I think he's been doing a good job of that including the health care plan for associates but writing garbled editorials on health care reform on right wing editorial pages is not going to improve business; it's just going to antagonize the customer core.
08/16/2009 9:48:29 AM CDT
Marcy McMurphy says ...
<strong>off topic on this post </strong>I find it difficult to believe that the comments published accurately reflect the range of opinions that comprised the comments posted: 65 supporters of Mackey to 5 (at most) critics? C'mon. And have there been NO comments between Nov. 20, 2008 and Aug. 15, 2009?
08/16/2009 12:07:14 PM CDT
RodThompson says ...
Mr. Mackey: I won’t boycott Whole Foods—it offers great food and good value. That is why we are loyal customers and investors, at least when the CEO sticks to what he knows. That is not antirust law. That is not securities regulation, and it is not health care reform. Please stick to the grocery business. I had thought you learned lesson from the Wild Oats debacle. The fact that the Board was forced to shut down your blog should have brought home the message for you to stay focused on the grocery business. On Tuesday August 11, I bought 300 shares of WFMI as your company seemed poised to succeed as the country pulls out of the recession. On Wednesday I read the WSJ opinion piece, with a sinking feeling. It was obvious right away that your vanity had once again got the best of you at the expense of WFMI investors. I would not have made that investment had I known what was coming. We did our research before investing—we simply could not have anticipated the latest extracurricular dalliance by the CEO. Putting aside the merits of your views on health care or their impracticality (one cannot simply decree “tort reform” or “state law uniformity” or cite IBD as authoritative on health care—ask Stephen Hawking), it is not your area of expertise. Worse, whether consciously or otherwise, you allowed the WSJ editorial page to advance their views under your name. Why did you allow them to change the title of your piece to make it Whole Foods’ critique of Obamacare? Why did you resort to use of the now familiar code words (e.g., “socialism” and “government bureaucrats”). You have built a wonderful company and have generally done a good job managing it. You deserve the celebrity. You get in trouble when you give out your “personal opinions.” This is the point you seem blind to. You are the public face of Whole Foods. When you speak, people hear Whole Foods talking. Even without the altered title, your “personal opinion” would have been seen as Whole Foods’ opinion and would have set off the same firestorm. Reading your explanation, I am afraid you still simply don’t get it. Please stop. You are hurting the company and its investors. Run your comments by your legal and PR advisers. Scrub them carefully and then say only what will advance the interests of WFMI. Thanks.
08/16/2009 3:01:15 PM CDT
Tony says ...
I am not a stock holder or inverstor, I am just a customer that enjoyed your products and spent around $100 a week a your stores. I will no longer shop at your place of business. I feel you are using your position for influence and now I will use my small stance along with all of my friends that shop there as my influence. I truly wish that you would have kept your coments to yourself on the health care issue.
08/17/2009 6:05:30 PM CDT
Jim says ...
John Thanks for being a stand-up guy! I wish we could make you the Health Care representative for all US citizens that have been left out of this government take it or leave it attitude. The economy and the job market are in a shambles, and yet they want to spend trillions in to debt that has never been seen in any one's lifetime. Your points on health care reform makes since , yes they are the places that should be the starting points for discussion instead of ripping the heart out of the best health care system in the world with a few warts that could be reformed. I thank you for using your 1st amendment right to help all of us with your points of view..Obama did ask for other points of view, but it seems he doesn't know how to handle people that disagree with him, that isn't very presidential. I believe your employees are lucky to have you in charge. I haven't been to your store in a while because it's quite a distance, but because of you and your words of wisdom we and others will travel over 30 miles 1-way to shop @ least 2 times a month from now on. Keep up the great work and THANKS
09/02/2009 2:23:33 PM CDT

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