Apt comparison. As a career marketer, I have often thought that I would pay money (let’s say $500-$1000) to be an invisible fly on the wall in a meeting with any of three guys: Warren Buffet on business strategy, and Steve Jobs and/or Ralph Lauren in product development team work sessions.He’s sort of like the Steve Jobs of fashion, minus the nuttiness.
He had and still has a clear vision and is obsessed with every aspect of how his clothing is branded. He basically opened the RL stores because the retail partners just didn’t get it.
For anyone who has yet to go into an RL flagship store, do yourself a favor and go.
As it happens, I had the opportunity to be that fly on the wall with Warren Buffet (bucket list item, for sure). Steve Jobs now impossible, Ralph Lauren extremely unlikely.
What intrigues me about Lauren in this context are the consistent awed and stunned accounts of his apparently infinite fashion bandwidth. He consistently sees things that no one else in the room does (As did Steve Jobs). And America, and the world, are better and more beautiful because of that vision.
I agree with DWW that, on the basis of breadth and duration of achievement and influence, he may be the top contender for men’s fashion GOAT.