When Stormy Simon—yes, that’s her real name—joined Overstock.com as a temp, the company was a start-up just two years in. Granted it was already at $18M in revenue, but in 2001, there were plenty of internet businesses booming.
Reposted from Forbes.com written by ,
In Simon’s case, she had a front-row seat to the evolution of an industry—e-commerce. Everyone was trying to move shopping online and making it up as they went.
Simon put off going to college because she thought Overstock.com was going to revolutionize the world. And she helped it do that with an intrapreneurial spirit and loads of energy. She says she ‘raised her hand a lot.’
Being an intrapreneur is often the best training for future entrepreneurs
Overstock.com was growing at 70% to 100% at a clip, and there was no shortage of things to be done. Simon learned early not to ask someone for help because that just ‘made the snowball bigger.’
So Simon had an idea. It was a campaign actually, ‘Discover the Secret of the Big O.’ Internet businesses weren’t marketing on TV, and she thought it would be a great way to introduce women to a new way of shopping.
She pitched her idea to the board in the midst of a flurry of agency pitches. And the board chose her idea. Then they gave her a small budget and encouraged her to figure it out in her usual style—guerrilla.
She enlisted German actress, Sabine Ehrenfeld, and flat out begged a director to help her with it. And what did that campaign get Overstock.com? It got them from $250M in revenue to $500M.
Throw your passion at all the problems you see
So in 2004, she got her first big executive title, the VP of Branding. Not bad going from a temp to VP of Branding in three years. And she loved what she did, but she was attracted to something else that needed fixing. The Customer Service Department.
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