Debbi Fields is the founder and former chairperson of Mrs. Fields Cookies, a $500 million company.
At age 20 and without any business experience, Debbi convinced a bank to finance an unproven business concept that appeared to have little likelihood of success. On August 16, 1977, Mrs. Fields Chocolate Chippery opened its doors to the public in Palo Alto, California.
Over the years, Debbi's role expanded from managing one shop to supervising operations, brand-name management, public relations and product development of the company's 900-plus company-owned and franchised stores around the United States and 11 countries.
In 1989, she made Mrs. Fields, Inc. the first company in the food retailing business to use technology to streamline operations and production schedules using a state-of-the-art computer system. The program is used as a model for business efficiency throughout the food industry and is used at Harvard Business School as an example of successful application of technology in business management. Today, Debbi helps companies use technology to achieve greater efficiencies and maximize execution of their culture and business principles.
Debbi is the author of her autobiography "One Smart Cookie: How a Housewife's Chocolate Chip Recipe Turned into a Multimillion-Dollar Business: The Story of Mrs. Fields Cookies", the "Mrs. Fields I Love Chocolate!" cookbook, "Mrs. Fields' Cookie Secrets", "Mrs. Fields Best Cookie Book Ever!", "Debbi Fields' Great American Desserts" and her first cookbook "Mrs. Fields Cookie Book: 100 Recipes From The Kitchen of Debbi Fields", which has sold more than 1.5 million copies and was the first cookbook to top The New York Times best seller list.
Twenty-five years later, Debbi, mother of five daughters, resides in Memphis, Tennessee.
She is now a consultant for Mrs. Fields Original Cookies and gives speeches at seminars for companies throughout the country and serves on the boards of Outback Steakhouse, Inc. in Tampa, Fla., and The Orpheum Theatre and WKNO in Memphis, Tenn.
Debra (Debbi) J. Fields epitomizes the American dream. From America's cherished tradition of humble beginnings, she launched what has become one of the Nation's most visible, successful dessert empires.
She is one of the few innovators and entrepreneurs to see their name become a product brand symbol of quality that is known and revered worldwide. Few dream achievers (Ford, Edison, Bell among them) live to enjoy such well-deserved acclaim.
More than 25 years of entrepreneurial, operational and managerial experience, all of it earned in a company she built (literally) from scratch. Founder, baker, chief cookie lover and former Chairman, of Mrs. Fields Cookies, a $450 million company she founded in 1977. Mrs. Fields has since sold her company, which is a market leader among fresh-baked cookie stores.
At the age of 20, Debbi was a young housewife with no business experience. Yet, she had a dream, a recipe, and a passion for sharing her chocolate chip cookies. She managed to do what most people considered impossible. She convinced a bank to finance a business concept which had never before been proven and which appeared on the surface to have little likelihood of success.
Mrs. Fields wanted to open a chocolate chip cookie bakeshop and store. On August 16, 1977, Mrs. Fields Chocolate Chippery opened its doors to the public in Palo Alto, California. Twenty-plus years later, Debbi Fields' role had expanded from managing one shop to supervising operations, brand name management, public relations and product development of her company's 600+ company-owned and franchise stores in the United States and 10 foreign nations.
Debbi Fields' personal values guide her role as a businesswoman. Her philosophy of excellence, stated in her motto of Good Enough Never Is, is mirrored in a company that has earned a reputation for providing the best in product quality and superior customer service. She attributes her greatest success to her ability to relate to her customers and earn their lifelong loyalty.
With expansion on the horizon in 1989, Mrs. Fields, Incorporated was among the first companies to take advantage of dramatic computer technology advancements. Debbi Fields led her company into the computer age, streamlining operations and production schedules with a state-of-the-art computer system. Her program is used as a model for business efficiency at Harvard Business School. It remains an example of successful application of technology in business management.
Debbi Fields' business accomplishments and capabilities reach far beyond managing Mrs. Fields, Inc. Today, she sits on the boards of Outback Steakhouse, WKNO (a public radio and TV station), and The Orpheum Theater. She is in the process of co-authoring a book called "Service Entropy".
She is the author of two cookbooks published by Time-Life. The first, 100 Recipes from the Kitchen of Debbi Fields has sold more than 1.8 million copies and was the first cookbook to top The New York Times bestseller list. The second, I Love Chocolate cookbook, published in 1994, has enjoyed tremendous success as well, posting sales of over half a million copies. She hosted Great American Desserts, a weekly program that aired nationally, on public television and is also the name of her third and newest book, Debbi Fields Great American Desserts, published by Simon and Schuster.
Debbi is the mother of Jessica (25), Jenessa (23), Jennifer (21), Ashley (16), and McKenzie (13). She resides in Memphis, Tennessee with her husband and family.