How John Lewis lost the heart of their brand

No brand has a God-given right to continue to exist.' - Marks & Spencer CEO

John Lewis is an old British retail brand (a department store) that for generations has been built on the ideals of quality, community and value. That was until tough contextual changes forced the business to look deep within itself for answers... to which it came up short.

Faced with a challenging future - will the once mighty John Lewis manage to once again build its brand reputation with young customers once again?

This enlightening FT documentary film is a worthwhile look as the recent past of John Lewis.

For us - there are so many parallels that can be drawn here to what is happening in South Africa too.

The BIG take out for us is ironically something the head of one of John Lewis' competitors said:

'No brand has a God-given right to continue to exist.' - Marks & Spencer CEO

That right.

No matter how great you once were. No matter how warm and fuzzy people used to think you were. If you are not constantly changing, adapting, reinventing, reshaping today - you have absolutely zero right to stay in business tomorrow.

John Lewis' problems are not as a result of it's ownership model (which this video seemingly promises to address), but rather due to a lack of congruent, informed strategy and vision. Getting 'back to basics' will only take you so far; branching out into divergent categories as a means to grow just because you feel you have 'a strong brand' is illogical.

It will be interesting to see if John Lewis will be able to rebuild their brand image for the future and unlock new opportunities with fresh eyes and vigour.