The No. 1 Toy Titan: Robert A. Eckert

Robert A. Eckert, 57, has been the chairman and CEO of Mattel since 2000.
Shecter Lee/Jeff Newton

I sensed that I have the sort of personality to get hooked on golf, and that's what happened. I play every Saturday and Sunday. My game still needs work. Birdies are as memorable to me as double bogeys are to Rory McIlroy.

Mattel actually produces some golf products. Barbie makes golf clubs, and Fisher-Price has a golf set. Those [ideas] didn't come from me, but I applaud getting youngsters interested in the sport.

I tell folks to leave their work and cell phones in the office. To me, business is best done in the office, and golf is best done on the course. I play with business folks, but we tend to never talk business. We talk about families and friends and our lives.

Looking back, I wish I had learned to play as a young person, because you never forget how to play. It's like riding a bike. Now I'm learning how to ride a bike at age 57, which is a challenge, but that makes it more fun.

I'm even more passionate about it because I'm so incompetent. My mother taught me to be humble, and there is nothing more humbling than yanking a brand-new Titliest into the woods or putting a three-footer two feet past the hole.

I love the challenge. I love the game. I'm totally hooked. My goal in life? To play more golf.

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