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Corporate Culture | Customer Service | Teamwork
In the spring of 1986, Pike Place Fish Company in Seattle's Public Market was on the verge of bankruptcy. In addition to his retail store, the owner, John Yokoyama, had started a wholesale fish operation and within a very short time had gone deeply into debt. About that time, an old friend, Karen Bergquist, introduced him to her husband, Jim Bergquist, who happened to be the owner of bizFutures--a company that offered business coaching. Mr. Bergquist proposed that he use his service to get his company back on track and beyond that, to create an extraordinary future. He accepted and the rest is history.
Jim Bergquist began coaching John Yokoyama and the fishmongers in developing an empowering company culture. One of the first steps for Pike Place Fish was to create a vision of the future that inspired them. The fishmongers were inspired by the prospect of being "World Famous--in a way that makes a profound difference for people." Along the way they have discovered how to communicate effectively and how to coach in a way that leaves their team members empowered. They've discovered what it really means to make a difference for the people they serve. They've also learned what it takes to break records and to go beyond what everyone thought was possible.
Today, Pike Place Fish continues to generate record-breaking performances in sales and profitability. Not only that--its fish-throwing staff have been featured in People's Magazine, Fast Company Magazine, Free Willy (the movie), ESPN, Good Morning America, CBS's Sunday Morning, and many more. They've been captured on film and written about by filmmakers and journalists from all over the world. Their Fish Market has been named by CNN as the #1 most fun place to work in the U.S. Their company's work culture has become a favorite subject for case studies in business schools. They have become a legend in the corporate training industry.
The coaching relationship between bizFutures and Pike Place Fish has spawned an entire industry of training videos, books, business retreats, "Fish Trainings," and workshops. The videos that document their exciting work culture have become the best selling corporate training videos of all time. John Yokoyama and his staff of fishmongers are now world famous...which is no accident...it was their intention all along!
The books published by Pike Place Fish are Catch! A Fishmongers Guide to Greatness (December 2003), and When Fish Fly, Breakthroughs Happen: The World Famous Pike Place Fish Market's Lessons in Creating a Vital and Energized Workplace (August 2004)
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