Don Surber tells the tale of L.L. Bean.
Even though his first hunting shoes had technical errors.
Eventually, L.L. went to work for his older brother, Otho, at a dry goods store in Freeport, Maine. L.L. had a pretty good life. The job paid $12 a week, but he hunted and fished. It was on his return from a hunt in 1911 that he came up with his idea for a hunting boot.
He did everything right, except his vendor -- a shoe cobbler -- failed to stitch the leather to the rubber properly.
After paying all those refunds and eating the shipping charges -- L.L. never charged for shipping -- he borrowed $400 from the bank and had U.S. Rubber Company make his boots. The first thing he did was ship 90 pair to the customers who had demanded refunds. Not only did they get refunds but replacements as well.