Olga Vidisheva

Shoptiques Founder & CEO

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Do You Have Any Tips for Managing Millennials?

They need a mission. And I think if you motivate them, they can be really fantastic, because they really wanna be great, and they really wanna live up to their parents' greatness. And so they…

Running Time: 0:46

What’s Your Morning Routine?

My morning routine, I wake up super early, as early as I can depending on the time that I went to sleep at. I do about an hour on StairMaster or treadmill and I do…

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What Role Does Data Play in Your Decision-Making Process?

So we are really lucky at Shoptiques because fashion and retail is a really perfect combination of data, right, like I can tell what users are purchasing before, but you have to, there's a lot…

Running Time: 0:57

How Do You Put Yourself in Your Customer's Shoes?

I went to a mall. I sat outside with Starbucks gift cards, and I would say "hey, do you have five minutes to spend and actually look at the website" and watched people shopping. I…

Running Time: 0:39

What Is a Unique Challenge Faced by Women Entrepreneurs?

As a woman CEO and founder, I do sometimes feel like how people perceive my feedback could be differently if this was a man delivering it to them. I think it's different for male employees…

Running Time: 0:32

What Role Does Instinct Play in Your Decision-Making Process?

I rely a lot on my instincts just because I've been doing this business for five years, so I've seen a lot of things play out in exactly how I thought they would, and I've…

Running Time: 0:52

What Is Your Must-Ask Job Interview Question?

I usually would say, you know, just getting to know them. This was not the first question I ask, probably somewhere in the middle, I would say hey, do you go to movies? And they…

Running Time: 0:48

What’s the Biggest Mistake When Raising Money?

Not every investor is great for every entrepreneur, not all the money is the same, you have to do your research, you have to understand every partner in the firm, who the best person is…

Running Time: 1:12

If You Were Stranded on a Desert Island, What 3 Things Would You Want With You?

I would do matches, gasoline, and I would do rope. I think the rope just gets you one, to be able to build kind of a shelter. As a kid, I was very tomboy. I…

Running Time: 0:37

How Much of Your Career Has Been Planned and How Much Has It Been Left up to Chance?

I think a lot of my career has been planned and I guess when you go into a startup, you do a lot of preparation, but everything is kind of by chance and you're leaving…

Running Time: 0:33

How Do You Find a Needle in a Haystack?

You know those people that walk around on the beach, and they're looking for gold? Like those types of machines, if they can tell you so far down, that there's something hidden, I'm sure those…

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What's the Hardest Part About Being a CEO?

The hardest part about being CEO is how much people rely on you, and how much any little thing you do impacts them. Really early on in the beginning, I said, because I'm not a…

Running Time: 0:59

What's the Most Surprising Thing About Being a CEO?

I think how little you can impact immediately, as the company grows there's so many layers and structures and procedures, and I always thought that the CEO can snap your fingers and all of these…

Running Time: 0:27

What Was the Worst Advice Someone Gave You?

A very popular advice these days is raise, raise, raise, raise a lot of money. And that will determine how fast you grow. And I think we're just starting to see the impact of that…

Running Time: 0:48

Tell Us About a Mistake You Made and What You Learned

Not realizing that not everybody is like me or motivated like me. I feel kind of spoiled because I went to Wellesley and then I was at Goldman and then I was at Harvard. You…

Running Time: 0:47

"Paid her way through college by modeling"

Olga Vidisheva is the founder and CEO of Shoptiques, an online destination where customers can shop a curated collection of the most unique small wonders from the best boutique shops around the world. Shoptiques provides small local businesses access to a suite of digital tools so that they can have a competitive online presence.

Born in Kyrgyzstan and raised in Russia, Olga moved to the United States at 17 for college. She paid for tuition by modeling and received her degree from Wellesley College in 2007. After graduating, she started her career at Goldman Sachs & Co. in New York and spent a significant amount of time traveling for work. While on business trips, she would use any free time to explore neighborhoods and shop small local stores. She discovered scores of incredible boutiques everywhere she went, but was often puzzled that none of them had websites so that she could shop their unique merchandise once she returned home.

Later while attending Harvard Business School, Olga spent a summer interning at Chanel where she was consistently complimented not on her name-brand designer pieces, but rather on her eye-catching boutique finds. So she decided to devote herself to understanding why small clothing stores didn’t have a digital presence and she spent her second year of school interviewing over 800 boutiques about the pain points of selling online. Consistently, she heard the same thing: Boutiques either didn’t have the time or the resources to do e-commerce well, if at all. She decided to draft a business plan to bring the world’s best boutiques online — and the idea for Shoptiques was born.

Olga went on to be the first single-founder non-technical entrepreneur accepted to Y Combinator in early 2012. Later that year after raising over $2 million dollars in funding from investors such as Greylock Partners, Andreessen Horowitz, SV Angel, Benchmark, and William Morris Endeavor Agency, Olga went on to launch Shoptiques with 25 boutiques on the platform. The company recently passed the 5,000 boutique benchmark—and is quickly growing.