Mark Parker Reveals What Nike Looks For in Employees

Posted by Steven Quach on

In 1979, Nike hired Mark Parker as a shoe designer. Working his way up the ladder, Parker now finds himself as the CEO of the Swoosh (since 2006). Business Journal selected Parker as the Executive of the Year and he gave some insight on what Nike is looking for in its employers.

Nike has hired more than 2,000 workers at its Oregon headquarters since 2012. What does the company look for in new employees?
At Nike, we’ve built a culture that attracts smart, curious and highly creative employees. Of course a passion for sport is also critical because no matter where you work — in design, at retail or in the supply chain — we are all focused on serving the athlete.

We also look for people who strike a balance between mastering the fundamentals of their role and pushing the edges of what’s expected from them. That’s what drives new thinking across our company and that’s how people grow in their careers here. I started at Nike in design, but I was always looking for ways to contribute to the team in an expanded way.

It probably wasn't the specific answer you were looking for but it makes a ton of sense. Nike obviously holds a majority of the market share in the footwear and sports apparel industry and they have no intentions of losing any to competitors, Under Armour or adidas.

As sneakerheads, there's a great chance that you wanted to work for/at Nike at one point in time. The best way to get your foot in the door may be the internship that they offer. If that is in your career path, good luck and hopefully this tidbit helps Nike discover the next best thing.
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