Photo: Spellbound with literally thousands of Lego minifigures, Legoland Hotel, Japan.
Who’s vibing on LEGO MASTERS at the moment? How good is that show?!! I rarely watch free TV anymore but my family and I absolutely love it. In fact, LEGO has been our boys’ toy of preference since they were toddlers. They’re now 9 and 11, and they still love a LEGO box at Christmas. So much joy for so many hours, screen free!
It got me thinking about the business behind LEGO….what’s behind such a beautiful invention? How do they keep coming up with so many great ideas to keep people engaged with, what is essentially the same product, generation after generation? Turns out it’s an incredible story.
First fun fact….LEGO is a 90-year-old privately owned company. They reported positive returns for the first 75 years of their operation, until recording their first ever loss in 1998. After several attempts to get back on track, they reported their biggest ever loss of USD$285 million in 2004.
Under the steady leadership of Jørgen Vig Knudstorp as CEO from 2001 to 2016, the company demonstrated a 600% increase in turnover from $6.3 billion to $37.9 billion in 2016. In December of 2016, Knudstorp took up the position of Chairman of the Group, handing the CEO reigns over to Neils B. Christiansen.
In March of this year, the positive growth story continues. The company reported its strongest period yet with “revenue growth of 27% vs 2020 and consumer sales growth of 22 percent over the same period, outpacing the toy industry and driving market share growth globally in largest markets” .
How did they achieve such an incredible turnaround?
Three things stand out:
Former CEO, now Chairman of The LEGO Group, Vig Knudstorp, created an environment where feedback was encouraged, failures analysed, excellence was the standard, and staff were empowered at every level of the organisation. He is a powerful communicator and tells The LEGO Group story in a compelling way.
My gift to you today – The LEGO Group Case Study. I’ve turned this story into a learning tool for leadership teams. It includes a link to a compelling interview with Knudstorp as well as some of his most powerful quotes coupled with discussion questions.
If you’re looking for a new way to inspire your executive team to self-reflect on their strategy, culture and leadership – please be my guest and download my case study.
Oh – and don’t forget to throw a little LEGO play into the mix!