Our Lead(H)er series features impressive women leaders in the tech industry. In this Q&A, we are featuring Shannon Rose, VP Omni-Channel Retailing at Rue Gilt Groupe.
Where did you grow up and how would you describe yourself as a child?
I was born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio. I was one of five children, 4 girls and 1 boy. As one of five children, 4 girls, and a boy, I was sporty, but chic and loved all things sports fashion.
What did you study in college and what was your first job out of school?
I went to college with the aspiration of being an attorney; however, I quickly realized that the law office environment was not my destined path after my first internship at a large firm. After graduation, I joined my father’s family custom home building business as a superintendent.
Can you share the details on your career path and what were the critical moments that got you to where you are today?
While there are several significant moments that got me to where I am today, the most critical moment was when I recognized imbalances at certain points in my career and had to figure out how best to navigate. For example, at the time, it was less common for a young woman to serve as a superintendent in the construction field. While I had the advantage of working for my father, where I felt more empowered to challenge the stereotypes, the experiences of navigating challenging the norm provided me a foundation to grow as a woman leader. As I advanced my career at Simon Properties, I was able to leverage this foundation to become a leader who leads with a purpose, a voice, and respect.
What is your current role and responsibilities?
Today, I am head of Merchandising and Brand Management for Shop Premium Outlets (SPO), Simon Property Group’s e-commerce off price marketplace, where I am responsible for overall growth and ultimate success of all our brand partners. In addition, oversee key initiatives such as SPO Live and SPO external partners.
Looking back, is this where you thought you’d be professionally? Was it always your goal to be in this position?
No, I thought I would continue in my father’s footsteps and carry on the family business! My childhood ‘passion for fashion’ ultimately secured my path to my current role.
For people who are looking to be in a similar position, what advice would you give to others in terms of helping them achieve their career goals?
My advice would be to expose yourself to every aspect of e-commerce business from operations to fulfillment to marketing. The greater you are exposed to the holistic e-commerce business model, the better off you will be in driving overall growth for your business.
What are the most important skills that you need to do your job well?
We operate as a startup with a lean team. Prioritization, time management, curiosity, and leadership are critical for the success of my position.
What do you find most interesting/rewarding about your work? What’s the most challenging?
The most rewarding thing about my work is the ability to create change instantly. The most challenging part of my work is that there is more opportunity than hours in the day to tackle everything.
Are you involved with any professional organizations outside of the company? Volunteer work?
With having a demanding job, I prioritize my time outside of the company to my family at home, so with two teenage kids, I enjoy volunteering at their schools for several sports and fundraising efforts.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
Spending time with my family, watching my kids play sports, and focusing on home decorating and projects.
How do you manage stress?
Commit to 30 minutes of exercise every morning and destress in evening on TikTok.
Any book or podcast recommendations?
I love podcasts!
I enjoy listening to leaders in the industry across all disciplines talk about their business and experiences, such as:
- Remarkable Retail
- The Jason & Scot Show
- Watson Weekly
- Life with Marianna
What advice do you have for recent college graduates?
Be curious at all times, absorb as much as you can and take advantage of every leader you are exposed to.