KIND’s Daniel Lubetzky, the Purpose-Driven Entrepreneur

December 2, 2015

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[albert chau]

“Failure is an opportunity to become a better person,” said Daniel Lubetzky. “Embrace the lesson and learn from it.”

As part of the Nov. 9 General Session, Bobbie Battista, host and producer of Georgia Public Broadcasting, spoke with the founder and CEO of KIND, who had an entrepreneurial spirit from a young age and can attribute his accomplishments to what he gleaned from his mistakes along the way.

Early on, Lubetzky realized that “communication was more important than advertising,” as many of his first companies weren’t successful.

“Own your failures. Challenge the meaning of things and challenge conventional thinking. Think: ‘AND then what?’ instead of ‘OR then what?’ he said. “If you’re not coming up with dumb ideas, then you’re not really stretching yourself.”

Lubetzky believes that if you can work hard and think creatively, then you can achieve goals that seem out of reach.

“Your mission shouldn’t be a crutch for your product; your product should lead your sales and stand on its own merit,” he said of creating a sustainable business. “What sells your product is the product. And you need to use communications to tell that story. Earned media is so much more credible to consumers.” 

When you’re risking something, it’s OK to falter and make mistakes.

“That’s when you’re really going to create disruptive change,” he said. “But make sure you also care about what you’re doing. The mission will help you not to get discouraged.”

Doing the ‘kind’ thing

Lubetzky founded KIND because he was always “looking for a snack that I could feel good about eating” that was also convenient and wholesome. And the company aims to “do the kind thing for our body, our taste buds and our world.”

His father, who is a Holocaust survivor, inspired the company name because of his stories about the kindness of strangers who shared nourishing food with him during his captivity at the Dachau concentration camp. Lubetzky adopted this philosophy that we can help improve our society with small acts of kindness.

“It’s important to transcend our differences to connect with others,” Lubetzky said. “In order to solve society’s challenges, we need to recognize a shared fate and we need to try to use the forces of capitalism to our advantage to create social good.”

The company “aspires to have a ‘kind environment’ in everything we do and treat each other with respect,” he said, adding that he encourages others to do the same. In fact, Nov. 13 marked “World Kindness Day,” where KIND hoped that others would “pledge a small, kind act.”

Lubetzky stressed that you need to be authentic in everything that you do. “If you have an ulterior motive for the kind acts, then they lose their magic,” he said. “All of us, as human beings, need to understand each other and connect more. We need to make kindness a state of mind.”

Amy Jacques

Amy Jacques is the managing editor of publications for PRSA. A native of Greenville, S.C., she holds a master’s degree in arts journalism from Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School. She also holds a bachelor’s degree in advertising from the University of Georgia’s Grady College and a certificate in magazine and website publishing from New York University.


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