Brand Architect Drew L. Greer Talks Making History at Nike, Sneaker Culture and Much More
Black Enterprise Magazine July/August 2018 Issue

Name: Drew L. Greer

Profession: “Don’t put me in a box or a cube!” I would best describe myself as a storyteller, creator, teacher and brand arsonist.

Age: 40-something

I have changed/contributed to my industry by: In the sneaker industry, I am credited with creating the current limited supply sneaker model for coveted products, the sneaker collaboration strategy with music artists, and mastering the art of market travel + mining insights

 

BLACK ENTERPRISE: What is your inspiration?

Greer: As a former undersized 5’9, 180-pound, Division 1 running back, the first male college graduate of my family, and a product of LA’s notorious East Side, I have an underdog’s mentality in everything I commit to.

BE: Describe your time working for Nike and why was it such a history-making moment in the footwear industry.

Greer: My time at NIKE was epic! Honestly, I was being paid to learn! The history made during my tenure at NIKE in leading the NIKE Limited Edition Footwear (known today as NIKE SportsWear) from a $30 million to a $500 million business, and today, while using the same DNA created while I was there it is a multibillion-dollar empire.

BE: From a style point-of-view why is footwear, more specifically sneakers, such an important symbol in the African American community?

Greer: Style, sports, and icons are key pillars as well as a currency within our community. With the birthplace of today’s sneaker culture being New York City, my experience tells me it was about finding a way to have the spotlight on the Ave., subway, or any key epicenter on an island of millions; very similar to the mentality of a graffiti artist or MC.

BE: Branding and merchandising in the men’s sector has been your career’s overall theme. Describe working for your various employers and what you have learned (tips, forecasting) that can be applied to today’s fashion market.

Greer: It all starts with knowing your consumer, having a brand purpose, and staying authentic to both.

BE: How do leaders like yourself break through the static and make an impact amongst your peers?

Greer: You can’t have fear if your desire is to create game-changing products and experiences in the quest to exceed the consumer’s expectation.

BE: What is the key piece of advice you can offer to the younger generation and BE Modern Man hopefuls hoping to cultivate a successful career?

Greer: Find your PASSION and take a relentless pursuit to master it!

BE: Why is it important that BE Modern Men like you are represented in your industry?

Greer: I am a mature version of today’s consumer in many ways. As a former collegiate athlete, as well as an original member of the culture, I provide authentic insights and understanding that your average brand employee cannot.

BE: As a man with a strong character, how do you see your own impact within your community?

Greer: I want to inspire and mentor our future leaders with the hopes that they exceed my impact—with the ultimate goal of working for them one day.

BE: The BE Modern Man tagline is “it is our normal to be extraordinary.” What makes you unique and stand apart from the crowd?

I have a natural curiosity that allows me to see the world in an untapped way. I’m often told I see the world around me in a way that others cannot. You can call me a visionary of sorts.

BE: What does a BE Modern Man mean to you?

Greer: A GAME CHANGER who knows where HE came from.

To learn more about Drew’s work, visit his page at www.linkedin.com/in/drewgreer

It’s our normal to be extraordinary. Follow @blackenterprise and join the BE Modern Man conversation using #BEModernMan.

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