Return on Courage: Your Newest KPI?

Return on Courage author and Sock Problems co-founder Ryan Berman shows off some of his startup’s newest footwear.

In Sock Problems, Ryan Berman looks to prove the value of overcoming fear

i.d.e.a. founder Ryan Berman parted ways with the creative agency he’d successfully helmed for five years to write and speak about courage. In his new book Return on Courage, not yet published, he reveals the shared characteristics of courageous people and enterprises.

Ryan says that whereas the human body is built around a central nervous system designed to keep us safe, the courageous among us are able to overcome our natural tendency to freeze or flee. These people have, consciously or otherwise, constructed powerful central courage systems.

But if you’re going to be an expert in the notion of courage, is it merely enough to write and speak about it? Ryan decided not, that he had to launch an enterprise embodying it as well.

Hence, his new purpose-driven brand, Sock Problems. Each of Sock Problems’ socks feature designs and messaging aligned with a specific issue many of today’s consumers are concerned about; for example, sock racism, sock inequality, sock climate change. When you buy a pair, Sock Problems donates up to 50% of the proceeds to a selected nonprofit partner.

Sock Problems is the perfect test bed for Ryan’s PRICE methodology for infusing courage in a brand:

  • Prioritize through values – understand what is important to you
  • Rally believers – assemble your raft-mates, the people who share your values
  • Identify fears – case in point: this is Ryan’s first try at leading a product brand
  • Commit to a purpose – as Simon Sinek says, find your why
  • Execute – the Yoda step (‘do or do not, there is no try’)

Ryan’s passion for both the idea of courage and the purpose of his brand come through loud and clear in this show. Listen in to learn how your brand can generate ROC: Return on Courage.

AMA San Diego Podcast, Jan. 23, 2018: Return on Courage: Your Newest KPI?