Cullen Schwarz: The Amazon for Social Good Wants to Empower You With Every Dollar You Spend - Unlimited Graphic Design Service


Cullen Schwarz: The Amazon for Social Good Wants to Empower You With Every Dollar You Spend

July 31, 2019, by


Episode #33 of Shades of Success features Cullen Schwarz, a driven individual who aims to empower others to make informed decisions of their purchases. He’s passionate about helping brands that leave a social impact. Even Forbes Magazine recognized the start-up as “Amazon For Good”. As such, individuals should learn to support these brands in making the world a better place. Upon talking with Cullen, I can sense his fulfillment in running DoneGood and partnering with brands that practice sustainability. In this interview, we learn about his experiences in politics, how DoneGood differentiates itself from other online shopping platforms, and his goal towards reaching 1 million users to use the platform for their shopping needs. Listen to the episode here.

Cullen Schwarz

Cullen Schwarz is the CEO, founder, and notably the Chief of Good Thoughts of DoneGood. DoneGood is an online shopping platform that aims to carry and support brands that serve a purpose. Over thousands of brands are featured in the DoneGood platform, and he and the team believe that they can partner with more brands to stand up to the “big guys.”
He once served under the Obama Administration as a senior communications advisor. During his tenure in the public sector, he realized the money he gave was towards profit-driven corporations, while there were those in poverty or work in poor labor conditions. So then, he left the public sector and decided to start DoneGood with fellow minded people wanting to promote change through purchases. Since then, he no longer finds a reason to wear suits every day. His dream when he retires is “move to the jungle to write books.”


Cullen and his team founded DoneGood in the summer of 2015. Their mission is to ensure that the money spent could become the greatest force for change. In doing so, DoneGood finds brands with a purpose and commit to creating a sustainable world. With this in mind, it helps enable consumers to become empowered, more aware, and feel good over their spending.
In choosing brands for their platform, they have a thorough approach in ensuring that the brand is committed towards change. The start-up looks for three main components:

  • “Make great stuff and make the world better”

DoneGood looks for companies that ensure durable products created with ethical production practices.

  • “Good for people”

The B-Corp wants brands that ensure people are in safe working conditions, empowered workers, not trafficked and not child laborers, and paid living wages.

  • “Good for the planet”

DoneGood searches for companies that use only renewable energy sources to produce their products and reduce carbon footprint.
So far, over 100,000 people have supported DoneGood and its partner brands and have diverted $500,000 to ensure these companies continue the fight in creating a better world to live in.

Interview Highlights

[00:29:07] What were some of the biggest challenges when you first started? As far as building your team, figuring out how to run a start-up.
At first, it’s figuring out what it is we’re doing. We’re going to help people use their purchasing power to create change. There’s a lot of different ways to go about that. We actually started more like a Yelp app looking for local brick-and-mortar stores that had a positive social impact. There’s a lot of challenges with that. If, you know, like, we have offices in the same area to meet for coffee, is there a highly ethical sustainable coffee shop in that small area? If you thought, I’m in the mood for Italian food, we have that kind of restaurant three miles away, ethical and sustainable. I’m not walking three miles on foot. You’ve got to go where it’s convenient. The level of change you’re asking people to make is bigger than if it’s like looking for a shirt online. You’ve got to make it easier for people.
[00:41:34] How important is your team in what you do and how do you decide who you’ll bring on?
The team’s critical. We want people to believe in the mission because then we have that shared passion. Diversity is really important. If a large majority of our buyers are women, then it’s good to have the perspective of women in the team. Just having different perspectives from different backgrounds genuinely strengthens the team. 
[00:45:00] What do you enjoy most about your work?
You know one of the things that I used to enjoy a lot in the early days, that I still get to do a little bit, but then I don’t as much anymore is talking with people from our partner brands. Everyone’s story is “So then I quit my career to trying to start some business that I really believe in that’s doing something good for the world.” All of these people are really nice, they committed their lives to it and put themselves through hardship. It’s always nice to connect with other brands. There are more conscious consumers than ever. There are more social entrepreneurs than ever. More impact investors than ever. I really believe that over the course of the next century, the biggest ideological shift that will have ever occurred in our time is an idea of what a business ought to be and how to act.

About the author

Sekinah Brodie is the Director of Partnerships at Penji. She enjoys writing and constantly learning about technology, entrepreneurship, and diversity in startups. She strives to empower women and minorities with job opportunities, career development, and positive representation. She recently launched an interview based podcast called “Shades of Success” that highlights individuals who champion diversity and positive community impact.

The all-in-one design team for your business

Get logos to websites and everything in between, Penji gives teams the designs they need to scale their business.

Find out more

Related articles


A Compiled List of the Best 20 Marketing Agencies in Tampa

You won’t run out of things to do in Tampa. You can drink craft beer, visit museums, view aquatic life, and have fun in amusement parks. Plus, the city is rich in culture and history, too, as the city has...

May 23, 2020, by

Small businesses

Why Hiring a Freelance Web Designer is the WORST Idea

Building a website is often compared to building a house. It needs thoughtful attention and careful planning. A Taylor and Francis Online study shows that users take an average of 0.05 seconds to form an opinion about your website. And...

May 23, 2020, by

Logo design

Old Company Logos Versus Their Current Logos

Whenever you are starting a business or brand, one of the first things that you think about is your logo. It’s because logos are the foundation of brand identity. If done correctly, you are already sending a strong message to...

May 22, 2020, by

Join thousands of teams already using Penji

Try your Penji unlimited design membership 15-days money back guaranteed

See pricing
We've Designed 1000+ Facebook Ads. Here Are 5 Templates That Works Everytime
Free Download