In my latest article on The Guardian Sustainable Business portal, I discuss how irreverent Method's offbeat approach towards employee recruitment and retainment has helped the company transform the cleaning products industry. With its insistence that prospective employees demonstrate that they commit to keeping the company "weird," the company's culture of happiness also offers several lessons to companies that wish to stay competitive.

In 2000 Eric Ryan and Adam Lowry confronted a stodgy industry that had convinced consumers that the key to cleanliness was using unsightly bottles full of toxins. But Method's bright and gorgeous bottles of surface cleaners and dish soap have pushed other companies to become more "green." Twelve years later, the company has surpassed $100 million in sales, thanks due to its employees. The flat organizational structure, including the requirement that employees man the reception desk at least once a month, helps imbed a culture of innovation that motivates Method's people to push themselves to the limit. An annual "prom" and Monday morning huddles also inspire employees to know that their opinions and voices are heard. Despite the recent merger announcement with the Belgian green cleaning products Ecover, watch for the company's unique and forward thinking culture to thrive--at least that is what Eric Ryan hoped for when I spoke with him earlier this month.

Read the full article here.

About The Author

Leon Kaye

Leon Kaye is the founder and editor of Based in California, he specializes in social media consulting and strategic communications. A journalist and writer since 2009 his work has appeared on Triple Pundit , The Guardian's Sustainable Business site and has appeared on Inhabitat and Earth911. His focus is making the business case for sustainability and corporate social responsibility. He's pictured here in Qatar, one of the Middle East countries in which he takes a keen interest because of its transformation into a post-oil economy. Other areas of interest include sustainable development in The Balkans, Brazil and Korea. He was a new media journalism fellow at the International Reporting Project, for which he covered child survival in India during February 2013. Contact him at You can also reach out via Twitter (@LeonKaye) and Instagram (GreenGoPost). During 2013 and 2014, he lived and worked in Abu Dhabi, UAE, as an associate director with a leading public relations firm within Masdar, the emirate's renewable energy company. He lives in Fresno, California.