Abercrombie & Fitch. “A&F.” As a not-infrequent visitor to shopping malls, this blogger is familiar with the brand. It’s nearly impossible to avoid the A&F “brand.” Until recently, A&F stores were infused with a cloying cologne scent, puffed into the ambient air. One couldn’t walk past an A&F store without inhaling a snootful. A&F was also in the news when its CEO declared that the brand’s products were only suitable for “good-looking, cool kids” and suggesting that overweight persons did not belong in A&F clothes. Over the years, A&F has made headlines for its provocative marketing campaigns and products (e.g., a t shirt reading, “it’s all relative in West Virginia”). If the longevity of a company is judged in part by its remaining “relevant,” one has to acknowledge that A&F has managed to consistently stay in the public’s consciousness.
So, how is any of this relevant to life sciences companies, whose work forces tend to be highly educated and unconcerned with measuring up on the A&F “cool kids” meter. Well, A&F has been in the news recently, and in a big way that does have relevance for employers everywhere. I’m talking about the hijab case. Continue reading “Clean Room Lessons from Abercrombie & Fitch”