Happy Holidays from Michael and BonnieBefore we get all excited about the year ahead, we thought we’d take this opportunity to share some of our highlights of the past year.

We’ve been blessed with many new opportunities, new friends, and positive developments!

Sustainability is Spreading

As you may know, we are environmentalists. However, our background is building a successful consumer packaged goods product (CPG). The “P” in CPG stands for packaging. Today we see clearly that irresponsible single-use plastic packaging threatens our environment. So, this year we are especially grateful to see the Nielsen ratings finally confirm that people now prefer to buy products that are made and delivered with sustainable practices! The good word is spreading! And – it shows that being sustainable increases sales! What could be better.

Your Outdoor Classroom in the Wine Country

We are so jazzed that our initiative to share the lessons we’ve learned with students of entrepreneurship has expanded this year. Two more highly-rated international universities are interested in taking a break from all the tech, campus visits, and VC talks on their Silicon Valley tours. They will spend the day with us in the bucolic Sonoma County talking about such things as “How Soft Skills Earn Hard Cash!” We refer to our presentation as “Your Outdoor Classroom in the Wine Country.”

Business Publications Contributions

This past year we were also happy to expand our contributions to such important business publications as Entrepreneur.com, The Business Journals, and the C-Suite Network. We believe we’re bringing a down-to-earth, back-to-basics, practical and empathy-focused approach to solving business problems and marketing products.

The Barefoot Spirit Audiobook

We also started two new exciting projects this year! One is a theatrical audio book version of our New York Times bestseller, The Barefoot Spirit. Actors voice the parts of the characters and listeners are entertained by stories with lessons. Produced by The Sherwood Players and scheduled to be released in early 2019.

Online Course

The other new project is an online course on how to get the entrepreneurial spirit in your business. It offers tips on how to hire, orient, train, compensate, and acknowledge your people to reduce turnover and engage them in problem solving. It is multimedia and interactive. It is scheduled to be released in 2019.

We are thrilled to be able to help startups and small businesses avoid some of the mistakes we made and benefit from the lessons we learned building the Barefoot Wine brand! We are most grateful that we have been in a position to make a positive difference in people’s businesses. All of our clients have made significant steps forward toward their goals. We congratulate all of you on your success!

New Friends All Over the World

But what we are especially thankful for is all the new friends we have made in education, business, and conservation from all over the world. We are all working together to encourage the next generation to bet on themselves and create sustainable businesses that benefit their customers and the world at large.

And thanks to all our readers who have encouraged us to continue to celebrate businesses that provide healthy alternatives we can support with our purchases.

We wish you all a very Happy Holiday! Please join us in our New Year’s goal of promoting a sustainable future for all.

Cheers! With love and appreciation – Michael and Bonnie.

Who We Are

Michael Houlihan and Bonnie Harvey Barefoot Wine Founders

Michael Houlihan and Bonnie Harvey co-authored the New York Times bestselling business book, The Barefoot Spirit: How Hardship, Hustle, and Heart Built America’s #1 Wine Brand. The book has been selected as recommended reading in the CEO Library for CEO Forum, the C-Suite Book Club, and numerous university classes on business and entrepreneurship. It chronicles their humble beginnings from the laundry room of a rented Sonoma County farmhouse to the board room of E&J Gallo, who ultimately acquired their brand and engaged them as brand consultants. Barefoot is now the world’s largest wine brand.

Beginning with virtually no money and no wine industry experience, they employed innovative ideas to overcome obstacles, create new markets and forge strategic alliances. They pioneered Worthy Cause Marketing and performance-based compensation. They built an internationally bestselling brand and received their industry’s “Hot Brand” award for several consecutive years.

They offer their Guiding Principles for Success (GPS) to help entrepreneurs become successful. Their book, The Entrepreneurial Culture: 23 Ways To Engage and Empower Your People, helps corporations maximize the value of their human resources.

Currently they travel the world leading workshops, trainings, & keynoting at business schools, corporations, conferences. They are regular media guests and contributors to international publications and professional journals. They are C-Suite Network Advisors & Contributing Editors. Visit their popular brand building site at www.consumerbrandbuilders.com.

To make inquiries for keynote speaking, trainings or consulting, please contact sales@thebarefootspirit.com.