Sam Calagionne on goodness as a guiding business principle

When we create our stories each week, one of the most agonizing decisions is what to call people. How do you distill a life—in the case of our storytellers, an otherworldly life—into the three or four words of a title scroll?

When you read our tagline: “Artists and Movement-Makers Who Inspire,” a guy who makes beer for a living may not be the first person you think of.

But if you’ve ever had one of Dogfish Head Beer’s “off-centered ales,” you’ll understand the “artist” part right away. In Dogfish Head founder Sam Calagione’s new book “Off-Centered Leadership,” you begin to get a picture of why Sam is a huge movement-maker as well.

The evolution of the American beer industry in the last 20 years has been THE David and Goliath business story of the 21st century. And Sam Calagione and Dogfish Head have been front and center, slinging the rock.

We talked with Sam about his early days of just wanting to express his creativity through his brewing, to his more recent challenges of running an ever-growing company in the shadows of ‘big beer.’

Sam talked with us about how he and his wife Mariah have learned to trust other leaders to respect Dogfish’s central concept of “goodness” as the company has grown.

And as with so many of the inspired artists who have shared their story with us, it all starts and ends with the heart. #ACBW​


In the second and final part of our talk with Dogfish Head Beer creative mastermind, Sam Calagione, he talks to us about rebelling, finding a “Man” to push against, and growing as a leader and parent.

This story follows a question so many of us ultimately have to deal with. How do we best redirect our energy and passions to leave our most important legacy–our children–with the tools and understanding to create a fulfilling and fruitful life?

As head of a family-owned business, these questions become even more heightened.

Read more about Sam’s journey in his new book, “Off-Centered Leadership.”

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