Bernie Marcus and Arthur Blank cofounded Home Depot in 1978 after being fired from their jobs at a regional hardware store. Bernie is a co-founder of Home Depot, the world’s largest home improvement retailer. The Atlanta-based company has more than 2,300 stores in North America and had revenue of $151.2 billion in the year to Jan. 30, 2022. Marcus co-founded the business with Arthur Blank in 1978 at age 50 and retired as chairman in 2002.

WATCH this conversation on YouTube. And SUBSCRIBE!

Read my new book, The Pursuit Of Excellence — See why Patrick Lencioni said “this book is an absolute must-read if you care to live an excellent life.”

FORBES recently called WELCOME TO MANAGEMENT, “the best leadership book of 2020.”

Be part of “Mindful Monday” — Text Hawk to 66866

Subscribe on iTunes  or Stitcher Radio

The Learning Leader Show

  • In 1981, Marcus, Blank and early investor Ken Langone took Home Depot public. All three men are now billionaires.
  • Bernie, who signed the Giving Pledge with his wife in 2010, has given away over $1 billion to education, hospitals, and Jewish causes.
  • Bernie Marcus was born to Russian immigrant parents, who sought the “golden land” in the U.S. and ended up in a fourth-floor walk-up tenement in N.J.
  • Marcus helped to open the Georgia Aquarium in November 2005.
  • Life-altering moments—Like Bernie’s refusal to pay a bribe to Harvard Medical School—changed the trajectory of his life. The son of a cabinetmaker and a garment worker who survived the Triangle Shirtwaist fire, Marcus overcame a hardscrabble upbringing. By age 15, he had held more than a dozen jobs, joined a gang, and worked as a comedian and hypnotist in the Catskills. After being fired at 49, Marcus teamed up with Arthur Blank and Ken Langone in 1978 to build a better home improvement storeand became one of the biggest successes in American history. 
  • Wife Billi – Best friend and love of his life. Been together for nearly 50 years.
  • The core values of creativity, autonomy, and strategic impatience are crucial to their business success.
  • Apply to be part of my Leadership Circle

More Learning:

Episode 078: Kat Cole – From Hooters Waitress To President of Cinnabon

Episode 216: Jim Collins — How To Go From Good To Great

Episode #300: AJ & Keith Hawk – How To Instill Work Ethic & Curiosity In Your Children

Episode #303General Stanley McChrystal – The New Definition Of Leadership