Michelle Hsiao, Founder of Revenue Growth Advisors, on Launching a Holistic Full Spectrum Consulting Group

Feature-Graphics-52

Hi Michelle! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business:

I am the proud founder of Revenue Growth Advisors, holistic full spectrum consulting for retail/B2C, wholesale/B2B, ecommerce and business development. I have led merchandising, ecommerce, digital marketing and financial initiatives in roles with Macy’s, as Group Vice President and as Senior Vice President for Boscov’s Department Store. Additionally I am armed with the entrepreneurial, accelerated growth and creative thinking from leading with a start-up, as Head of Ecommerce/Chief Merchandising Officer . I have deep knowledge of home goods, women’s and children’s apparel, toys, food and candy, and various selling formats (brick and mortar, ecommerce, DTC/marketplace, wholesale/ manufacturing/direct sourcing). I am highly adept with innovative approaches for profitability improvement (P&L/EBITDA), founder/leader resource maximization and guidance as well as innovative customer experience and strategy. I am Mom to an entreprenista/fashionista/future mayor and CEO in the making, 8 year old Lauren, my alpha generation internal focus group! Love being her “life coach and guide” (which is why I included a photo of the two of us!). I live on Long Island, NY but was a Manhattan girl for 17 years and originally from Maryland. I love spin class, theatre, the beach, golden retrievers and cheese/bread/wine for dinner!

Michelle with daughter, Lauren

So Michelle, what excites you about being an Entreprenista League member?

I’ve been blown away by the incredible talent of the Entrepenista members, as well as how generous everyone is with their time to connect, and support each other with guidance, connections and just general good will.

How did you decide it was the right time to start your own business?

I’d been “doing the work” of consulting for a couple of years, but not in an official/”we are a company” way. I decided to take that leap, connect with and bring on board other thought and industry leaders and to support and focus on small to medium businesses.

You mentioned earlier previous experience with department stores, can you expand on that?

I had held positions with billion dollar retailers for 20+ years, including as a buyer, overseas sourcing/product manager, and as a senior leader in ecommerce merchandising and marketing for Macy’s as a GVP, growing the digital business from less than 1% of the corporation’s business to nearly 30%. I was an SVP for Boscov’s, a regional department store in the northeast, leading a large team overseeing all merchandising, profitability, marketing, etc for Home, Toys, Candy/Food, Pets, Luggage and more. When I left Boscov’s in the early days of the pandemic, I consulted for several organizations, including an online marketplace, vendors/wholesalers, and also volunteered my time as an executive business consultant for The Acceleration Project, a nonprofit that supports small businesses. Those experiences inspired me to see my background and knowledge, along with incorporating some incredible industry professionals, to launch my business with a focus on supporting small to medium businesses with high quality, strategic and full spectrum business consulting services.

Did you always know you wanted to be an entrepreneur?

I’ve always known what it is to be an entrepreneur- my parents had their own companies for most of my life, and I understood from the sidelines what that meant-both the good and the bad. I didn’t anticipate that I’d start a business- I was very happy in corporate America. But the experience of going through the pandemic/corporate uncertainty, and then the positive experience of volunteering with the nonprofit to support small businesses just inspired me to take the entrepreneurial leap!

What was you initial marketing strategy?

I’m still in what I consider to be the “first launched” phase. So I’m still learning what works and doesn’t! So far, networking with colleagues, in person and virtual events, social media posts on LinkedIn and business groups on other platforms have served me very well. I know i need to step it up in terms of building my “thought leader” presence online. Taking it one day at a time!

Entreprenistas overcome challenges every single day. What is the biggest challenge you have encountered along the way, and what did you learn from it?

We had a great client very early on, and one of my team members was the primary service provider. Because of her experience level and expertise (which I am not as steeped in), I took a bit of a backseat. This lack of day-to-day involvement and presence on behalf of the client ended up causing some issues. I was able to correct the difficulties but I learned that as the CEO/Founder of my company, I still need to be in a very present and involved position/very “client facing” even if my team members are leading the day-to-day.

What is the accomplishment you are the most proud of to date?

Starting the business! I took the leap, figured a lot out as I’ve gone along, and it’s intimidating and overwhelming! But I’m so glad I’ve done this. And every time that my daughter talks about me as “the CEO of her own company,” I’m so proud to be setting an example for her!

Do you believe in work/life balance? What do you have any pro tips?

Absolutely! We need to be focused on driving our businesses, and all that entails. But we also need to take care of health-both mental and physical. We need to have great experiences with friends and family. But the idea of “she does it all!” is BS (pardon my french). NO ONE can “do it all”. Figure out what you can outsource, let someone do for you-whether that be a house cleaner, a meal service, a tutor for your child, hiring a travel concierge to plan your big family vacation. Letting go of tasks that you can do for yourself, but your time is better spent elsewhere frees you up to take that hour walk, to sit and be present and play barbies with your child, to take an afternoon and go to the spa.

What’s a piece of advice you can share that you wish you’d known when you first started your Entreprenista journey?

I figured it out pretty quickly, and I’m glad I did: Take the initiative, reach out to people, ask to connect, have “virtual coffee, be hungry and excited to hear about others’ businesses and ideas. These efforts will pay off in spades: new business, connections, gaining ideas, and just having a great conversation.

Michelle, you have lots to celebrate! What have you achieved recently that you’d like to celebrate with our community?

We haven’t “achieved” it quite yet but we’re working on our full marketing and content strategy and implementation which we plan to launch very soon. We’ve been “driving down the road at 100 mph and need to change the tire but we can’t stop”- meaning we’ve been doing the “work” for our clients while also strategizing and building. it’s a lot! But we’re excited to be working “on” our business more and more, and not just “in” our business.

What’s next for your business? What can we expect to see over the next few years?

I’m so excited to continue to grow our connections and support small to medium businesses. We have conversations almost daily, or at least weekly, with S to M business owners and leaders who might not be ready for us today, but we see them growing and being ready for the next phase in 2-6 months. Small to medium businesses need the same quality level of guidance as big business: on profitability, getting into big retail, improving their production, growing their marketing presence etc and I am thrilled, along with my team, to be providing that.

 Learn more about the Entreprenista League and join today!

Share it!

Posted in
Tags

Leave a Comment





Valeria Lasak’s Marketing Agency Focuses on Fashion, Beauty, and Personal Brands

Hi, Valeria! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Hi, I’m Valeria. Cofounder of MKT Besties and Nomad, a marketing agency focused on fashion, beauty, and personal brands, I’m also a community leader with the New Miami Girls community and host the street podcast ‘Who Is She Miami.’ This project is especially…

Leigh Burgess on Her Passion for Consulting, Coaching, and Curated Events

Hi, Leigh! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Leigh is a CEO & Founder and driven entrepreneur who is passionate about helping organizations and individuals achieve their fullest potential faster. By continuously stepping out of her comfort zone and pushing boundaries, Leigh has not only grown her own company into a…

How to Avoid Legal Challenges with Lauren Bercuson from Storylock Legal

“In the beginning, if you don’t have a team or a system or community around you, it’s very easy to feel lost. There are these amazing communities out there for amazing female founders that will really help guide and support you. So, the greatest lesson I learned pretty quickly was that you’re never alone. Or,…

The Secrets to Building a Community Led Business with Ingrid Read

“You really have to understand that, in order for you to scale, you have to learn how to do certain things and master them before you move on. If you don’t do that, then your audience is going to feel just as lost as you feel.” In this episode of Entreprenista, we sat down with…

Krystal Childrey’s Journey to Founding a Boutique Ad Agency

Hi, Krystal! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Krystal Childrey is the founder of Soulwave Digital, a boutique advertising agency helping purpose-driven eCommerce brands scale profitably with Facebook and Instagram ads. Her agency takes a holistic approach to advertising and loves helping brands better understand their numbers, making sure that our…

Veteran Marketing Exec Mindy Anderson Brings Brands’ Stories to Life

Hi, Mindy! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Mindy Anderson is a veteran marketing executive, growth strategist, fractional chief marketing officer, and Founder of I Breathe Marketing. She has a proven record of building stronger brands, driving client engagement, and attracting more leads while maximizing return on marketing spend. Who are…

Tye Barrett Inspires People to Love Themselves Through Her Luxury Collection

Hi, Tye! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Amami was created by entrepreneur Tye Barrett, an African-American woman, who set out to inspire people to embrace their authentic selves and create a community rooted in selfacceptance. Like most powerful stories, hers starts with a personal journey of perseverance. As a single…

The Most Common Mistakes When Starting a Business—and How to Avoid Them

When you’re first starting a business, there’s so much you don’t know you don’t know—like how to price your offerings, market your business, or hire people to support you. Every entrepreneur learns along the way, so why not save yourself some time and money (and potentially even business heartbreak) by learning from the candid stories…

How Leyla Bilali is Building a Holistic Fertility Brand

“One big thing that sets us apart from other people in [the fertility] space is that we are a team of medical professionals and it’s all within our scope of practice to guide you through these things.” After a decade at one of New York City’s top fertility clinics, Leyla Bilali was approached by one…

How To Build a Sellable Business with Carrie Kerpen from The Whisper Group

In this episode of Entreprenista, we sat down with Carrie Kerpen, founder of The Whisper Group, an exit readiness practice for women-owned businesses. Carrie previously co-founded Likeable Media, one of the first social media agencies, which she successfully sold for eight figures in 2021. Carrie is an accomplished author and hosts “The Exit Whisperer” podcast,…

Multifaceted Entrepreneur Katie Villacres on Her Live Event Production Business

Hi, Katie! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Hello, my name is Katie Villacres. I am a multifaceted entrepreneur with a diverse skill set and a passion for creative endeavors. Alongside being a dedicated mom who loves fitness, I have successfully owned multiple businesses. Currently, I am embracing my creative side…

Temprance Williams-Bell Offers Eco-Friendly, Ethical Skincare Products

Hi, Temprance! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Hello, my name is Temprance and I am the founder of My Natural Butter. With a passion for natural skincare and wellness, I created this brand to offer eco-friendly, ethical products that cater to the needs of conscious consumers. Our mission is to…

Peighton Woodard Shares About Her Women’s Wellness and Lifestyle App

Hi, Peighton! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Hi, I’m Peighton. I am the CEO and Founder of Luna Leaf and app designed to revolutionize women’s wellness by aligning lifestyle choices with the menstrual cycle. Who are your customers? Women between the ages of 26-45. What was your background prior to…

How Shannon Weinstein is Making Financial Literacy Relatable for Entrepreneurs

“A lot of people have the misconception that PR is only intended for large brands, and that is so not true. PR is really a formula, right? It is building brand awareness, gaining visibility to earn credibility, which equals profitability.” After a career spent working in Big Four accounting and corporate America, Shannon Weinstein was…

How Lauren Picasso Navigated Fundraising Challenges to Grow Cure Hydration

“It’s all about, you know, investors are going to be looking at your background and whether they believe in the idea. Sure, but are you going to be able to execute on this idea?” In this episode of Entreprenista, we sat down with Lauren Picasso, founder and CEO of Cure Hydration, a plant-based hydrating drink…