Nasty Gal CEO's 5 Tips to Be a #GirlBoss

Sophia Amoruso, 29, built an eBay shop peddling vintage castoffs into Nasty Gal, a $240 million fashion empire. Here, her tips for getting ahead.

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BE OPEN TO SCUT WORK. When I was 22, I wasn't too proud to do anything. I was taking out trash, buying stinky vintage clothes, and pulling gross Kleenex out of the pockets. I don't hire people who aren't willing to do heavy lifting.

GET EDUCATED BY GOOGLE. I researched on YouTube what venture capital was, what VCs look for in entrepreneurs. Even if you can't afford tickets to big conferences or you're not a natural networker, there's so much information online for you to assimilate.

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IT'S OK TO REJECT ADVICE. Learn from other people's mistakes, but learn from your own, too. People told me I'd never outgrow our warehouse space. And I was like, "You watch." [Nasty Gal just opened a 500,000-square-foot fulfillment center in Kentucky.]

EVEN FREE SPIRITS NEED A STRATEGY. The first couple of months after I launched Nasty Gal, I was making more money than I had ever made working crappy retail jobs. I was having fun. But there was also a lot of problem-solving. I still follow my nose, but you can't lead an organization with 300 employees and not have a plan. My job now is to institutionalize the magic.

KNOW THAT BEING THE BOSS IS STRESSFUL. I started the business so I could be by myself, behind a computer. But I have 300 people who show up for work every morning. That's way more intense than dealing with a customer for 30 minutes. Nasty Gal has taught me about sharing and collaborating—sometimes the hard way. I guess the best part is also the most confusing: I can't quit and I can't be fired.

Sophia Amoruso's first book, #GIRLBOSS is out now.

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