A Sportman's Life: How I Built Orvis by Mixing Business and Sport

Leigh Perkins, Author, Geoffrey Norman, Author
Leigh Perkins, Author, Geoffrey Norman, Author Atlantic Monthly Press $24 (192p) ISBN 978-0-87113-757-9
Reviewed on: 10/04/1999
Release date: 10/01/1999
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-7871-2337-6
Hardcover - 978-1-58574-876-1
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-1-59040-114-9
Paperback - 193 pages - 978-1-58574-877-8
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In this combination of personal and company memoir, Perkins, former CEO of the sporting goods company Orvis, discusses how he merged his love of the outdoors with his professional life. Perkins, who once was kicked out of school for going fishing, presents himself as a born salesman who worked for various companies before buying Orvis in 1965. For nearly 30 years, he ran the company, expanding its fishing franchise into clothing and hunting outposts before retiring in 1992 so he could spend his time fishing, hunting and traveling. Perkins has traveled extensively, and the descriptions of his trips to fish in China or hunt in India are quite vivid. Less successful is his consideration of his business experiences. Perkins's voice is more matter of fact and less enthusiastic talking about the work that paid for his outdoor adventures than about the adventures themselves. But to his credit, he presents his story not as the key to life or retailing or business growth, but merely as the story of one man's very fulfilling marriage of business and pleasure. (Oct.)
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