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A Sportsman's Life: How I Built Orvis by Mixing Business and Sport Audio, Cassette – Abridged, November 1, 1999


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Audio, Cassette, Abridged, November 1, 1999
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--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Audio Cassette
  • Publisher: Audio Literature; Abridged edition (November 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0787123374
  • ISBN-13: 978-0787123376
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 4.1 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.2 ounces
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,608,808 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

In A Sportsman's Life, Leigh Perkins tells a vivid and passionate story about how he turned Orvis into one of the country's most noted fly-fishing and sporting companies. A pioneer in the mail-order business, Perkins boosted sales of the Manchester, Vermont, company from $500,000 annually to nearly $200 million. Perkins believes he succeeded by building a superior product and selling "a lifestyle" in his catalogs--an appreciation of fishing, bird hunting, and country living. "We found not just a niche but an identity," he writes. "It was an exciting place to work." Perkins said he was never afraid of trying something new. Long before the concept became standard, for example, he traded mailing lists with competitors. He also grew Orvis by launching fishing and hunting schools, expanding into women's clothing, involving customers through an Orvis newsletter, offering odd items like bean bags for dogs, and turning out high-quality fly rods and reels.

Perkins, who recently retired, lived the life he sold. Orvis united his love of sales with his love of the outdoors. The book is packed with gripping adventure tales about fly fishing for bonefish off the Florida Keys, hiking the backcountry of New Zealand, Argentina, and Mexico, encountering bear in Alaska and tiger in India, and once almost getting poisoned to death in Africa. He even includes chapters on his favorite bird-hunting dogs and his efforts to protect open space. Written with Geoffrey Norman, the book should appeal to both business and outdoors types. --Dan Ring --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

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.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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