20. May, 2020
Q&A with CEO & co-founder Kasper Ulrich
What are your best tips for being a successful business owner?
I have plenty of tips but I’ll mention a few.
- First of all, surround yourself with people, who are smarter than yourself.
- Hire attitude, train skills.
- Invest your time where the ROI is highest.
- Learn from your mistakes – or even better learn from others’ mistakes.
One of my favorite quotes is by Mario Andretti: “If everything seems under control, you’re just not going fast enough”.
How did you build a concept this big?
It’s hard to explain exactly what we did to scale SHAPING NEW TOMORROW to this extent. But building a concept successfully definitely requires the right team, the right actions, and various trials and errors. Lastly, I cannot emphasize enough how important dedication is. Without it, you won’t go anywhere.
Where do you see SHAPING NEW TOMORROW in 5 and 10 years?
Short term in Scandinavia and Europe – both online and offline. Long term in the US and Asia as well.
How important is sustainability for SHAPING NEW TOMORROW?
Very important! We are aware of the impact our industry has on the environment. As part of our product strategy, we are looking for alternatives to conventional textiles and aim to use more sustainable materials without compromising on our core product values. This vision is especially present in our upcoming recycled collection.
We work closely together with our supply chain – both in terms of the quality of our products but of course also in terms of CSR and fair labor.
Any new products coming soon to look out for?
Soon we are launching our new recycled collection – it will be our largest launch so far, and it’s definitely worth looking out for. The collection is made of recycled materials consisting of pants, shorts, shirts, and jackets. The level of comfort and style in these products is insane.
How did you and the rest of the team at SHAPING NEW TOMORROW deal with the COVID-19 lockdown?
We sent all employees to their home offices and followed the recommendations and guidelines from the Danish Ministry of Health closely. Before the official guidelines stated it, we decided to temporarily close down our physical stores as well.
Everything happened so suddenly but being born a digital business we managed to keep up and seek the opportunities. But thankfully, everyone's back to work now.
In your own words, can you share a little bit about what exactly you are doing?
No two days are the same in my position. But usually, I’m involved in decision making and aligning projects and company strategies. In short, I am overall responsible for strategy, company building, investments, HR, PR, company cultures, financials, sales, marketing, etc. But to be fair, I don’t actually do all the work by myself!
How did the three of you (founders) meet?
We grew up together as childhood friends. We’ve stuck together ever since – and yes, it is possible to go into business with your best friends. It just takes discipline, alignment of expectations, and mutual respect for one another.
Where and when does your next store open?
Our next flagship store will open in Aarhus, Denmark June 11th. It is our largest store so far for which we have developed a whole new instore concept that’ll also be integrated into our existing and future stores. It’s definitely worth visiting!
Do you plan to open flagship stores internationally as well?
Personal interaction with our instore guests is very important to us, and we love creating memorable experiences in our stores – so of course, we will open stores internationally. The first stores outside of Denmark are planned to open later this year.
How are you hiring for SHAPING NEW TOMORROW? What are you looking for in a candidate?
The right attitude and people who believe in the vision of SHAPING NEW TOMORROW. They are the ones who will work with passion, commitment, evolve their true talents, and spread positive energy throughout the organization.
What is your favorite piece of clothing?
Personally, I prefer the business casual look but I still require comfort in my everyday work life. My favorite pieces of clothing are our Classic Pants and our Classic Shirt. They come in a variety of colors that never make my outfit look doll or similar. I live by dressing well while keeping it simple and noteworthy.
Which animal would you compare yourself to?
Taurus – if you believe in zodiac signs at least… :-)