The man behind Zara brand is unknown to the most of us, but in the world of business, his impact is loud and clear in everyone's face. Amancio Ortega, our protagonist. Many people talk about him, but the reality is that no one really knows who he is. What we do know is that he wanted to stay anonymous, hidden from the public eye, and so far, he has been very successful. He is so unknown that he has almost turned into a myth. It is true that people know about his brands and his work, but they know next to nothing about his persona. That is why Covadongo O'Shea, in her book The Man from Zara starts by declaring that she also does not really know the man, but she was lucky enough to have a few conversations with him throughout the years. And through these conversations, she managed to know some things, not everything, but she knew some things that can help the rest of the world in unraveling the cover of her friend, Amancio Ortega, the biggest achiever in the 20th-century fashion industry. This whole story starts almost 30 years ago, when they first met.
"Zara believes in studying human behavior and trends. Their speed and efficiency is novel. Bringing well-made clothing within the reach of a large proportion of the population has worked well for Zara. In what fields can I be an expert? Amancio Ortega is an expert at fashion merchandising."
"Amancio Ortega’s business success is tightly connected with a unique business model of the fast-fashion retailer.The two key ideas of this business model are to give customers what they want as quickly as possible. For instance, Zara is known for its 12,000 new designs developed and distributed annually, speed being the retailer’s driving force. Moreover, Zara refreshes its garment stocks twice a week. Amancio Ortega Gaona imposed a golden rule back in the 1970s, which states to receive new orders within 48-hours’ time period. That is why, Zara factories look like a well-oiled machine, where hundreds of designers and sales analysts co-operate in an open space floor, organized around these two principles, namely the delivery speed and a customer-orientated approach. "
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He was fired by the same idealism and taste for danger that inspired so many heroes centuries ago to accomplish their great deeds.
Armancio never doubted that if he wanted to win a degree with sound value in the university of fashion he would have to earn it through effort, stamina, and enthusiasm that needed renewing every day.
I've always enjoyed being surrounded by creative people who are mostly young, and listen to their suggestions, people who spend their time travelling the world and noticing all the trends in the media, not just as regards clothing, but also lifestyles.
Ortega never slacked in the pursuit of excellence; he always thought that the company came first, and everybody else next.
Luck is important in everything you do in this life along with factors such as talent, work and so on.
He isn't the kind of man who is afraid of losing impetus by endlessly growing; he never feels caught off-guard. He's very aware of the fact that a business like distribution, particularly in fashion, has to be connected with what's happening.
Of course we all built this company, but not one of our 80,000 workers would have been able to make Inditex without Ortega leading us.
I could never have imagined such an explosion when we started. But you keep travelling forward day by day and you see how at every step the road opens up before you.