TBF_ALEXANDRA_WILSON_Featured

 

The moment I knew I wanted to be an entrepreneur…

I think I always had an entrepreneurial nature. At a young age, by selling lemonade with my friends after school, I discovered that selling something was in fact fun for me. After business school and before launching Gilt, I worked for a time on the sales floor at Louis Vuitton, and that’s when I recognized that my ability to sell was in fact a skill. I generally try not to take no for an answer. I have a glass-half-full approach to life. If someone says maybe, that’s a maybe, and if someone says no, that’s also a maybe. As an entrepreneur, I think I have to believe in possibility…

What attracted me to join the founding team of GlamSquad…

I ran into two of GLAMSQUAD’s co-founders at an event at Google’s offices. I had gone to college with them, and they told me about the concept. I was instantly intrigued by the idea of high quality at-home beauty services, and could immediately understand the consumer need. Initially, I became an advisor to the company and then shortly after, I joined as CEO. I believe in our mission of making the process of getting ready a whole lot easier for time-starved women. Our business is not just about special occasions or events – we believe in helping women look their best and feel confident any time and any day of the week.

Skills I’ve learned as an entrepreneur that weren’t always natural to me ARE…

The importance of delivering messages that others may not want to hear. I’m a people pleaser, but I learned quickly that there are times when you have to be tough on others. Sometimes, to get things done and to be taken seriously, you need to push and be pushed outside your comfort zone. I have also learned that in a start-up, being flexible is critical. I tend to be a planner, but I have learned that as much as one plans in a start-up, there will be times when one needs to be nimble and expecting the unexpected, putting out fires as necessary and doing whatever it takes, whenever, to get the job done.

The most important lesson I have learned over the past year…

As a first time CEO, I am still developing my leadership style. As a leader, you are responsible for the careers and happiness of so many others. I always want to make sure I’m delivering on my end and living up to the standards I’m setting.

We stay in tune to GlamSquad users and improve their experience by…

Asking clients questions to make sure they are happy with the experience and end result throughout a GLAMSQUAD service. Our beauty professionals will stay with a client until she is 100% satisfied. Following the appointment, clients are sent an email survey with a variety of questions ranging from “did you enjoy your appointment?” to “what services would you like us to add?” This allows us to know what our clients need and want. Because of our efforts to connect with clients, we recently started offering airbrush makeup services in partnership with TEMPTU and shellac manicures in partnership with CND Shellac in New York.

I celebrate my team’s accomplishments By…

Every time we gather our GLAMFAM together, we acknowledge select beauty professionals by awarding them with GLAMMIES. The GLAMMIES are both recognition in front of the beauty professional’s peers, but also fabulous gift bags of beauty goodies from our brand partners. We hold weekly “All Hands” meetings where we communicate our wins, as well as our challenges and applaud one another. I try to always thank our team members when I know they have given a project or task their all. Just saying a genuine “thank you” can put a smile on someone’s face and have a positive impact.

TOOLS I USE TO MONITOR ACCOMPLISHMENTS AND CHALLENGES…

We closely monitor feedback we receive from our clients. When a client tells us how an appointment lifted her spirits or gave her the confidence she needed for an interview, we know we are doing our job well. We aim to make women feel beautiful on the outside and the inside!

MY Advice to entrepreneurs raising funds for their business…

Keep on networking! I love meeting new people and I encourage others to try and meet as many interesting people as possible. Building and sustaining relationships really does help your business. I believe in the power of personal connections and relationships. Try to meet potential investors in advance of asking them to invest in you. Build relationships before you may need them!

The area of technology that excites me the most…

It’s exciting to see how much we’ve accomplished since launching as an app-based business in January 2014. Now we are focusing on other ways to use technology to create a better customer experience for our clients. There is so much opportunity and we have only scratched the surface. We are never short on ideas, just short on finding engineering talent!

What I Wish I KnEw When first starting out…

The earlier you can develop and trust your gut instinct, the better. In the early days of a start-up, many decisions have to be made through gut instincts because there isn’t always data and analysis to make decisions.

Daily must-read websites…

  1. Daily Skimm
  2. WWD
  3. TechCrunch
  4. NyPost
  5. NYTimes

In 5 Years GlamSquad Will Be…

Available in big cities across the country and hopefully, in key cities abroad. We would likely have additional beauty services available for our clients and that we will be servicing both women as well as men. I also would expect that we would have an e-commerce business as well as a GLAMSQUAD branded line of beauty products. So much can happen because 5 years in a start-up is like 20 years in corporate America!