Portrait by Billy Surface


Passion Is the Path to Succeess

Melissa Reiff, president and chief operating officer of the Container Store, on what drove her to achieve.

“It may be a bit naive, and I certainly don’t mean it to be arrogant, but I want it all. I’ve [always] wanted it all. And I always felt like I could have it all. I married my junior high school sweetheart almost 40 years ago, and we have two beautiful children. I always wanted [a family] and a career, and I’ve always worked outside the home. But whatever success I have had, I didn’t achieve it unilaterally, it’s been with the help of the incredible mentors I have had in my career and continue to have. [It was] a lot of luck and a lot of ‘right place, right time.’ I’m 60, but I still feel very young. As long as I am healthy and able, I want to contribute, and I want The Container Store to reach its full potential. I have worked really hard to develop strong relationships, because that is really what it is all about. To do that, you have to have compassion, you have to care, you have to understand what makes people who they are, and care enough to get to know them. Looking back, I may have lightened up on the intensity, but there is something about passion. It is such a strong driver for achievement, when you love something and you’re so passionate about it, it’s like how you love your kids. It’s just uncontainable.”


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