This week, the SphereCast team interviews Aleksandra Efimova, CEO of RP Group International. RP Group began with a single brand — Russian Pointe — which Aleksandra began out of her college apartment. For over two decades, Russian Pointe has provided hundreds of thousands of student and professional ballet dancers with quality pointe shoes. Her shoe brand has since expanded into a popular podcast, and most recently, RP Group acquired FLX, which is a brand of innovative performance equipment and training for flexibility, strength, and recovery.
Aleksandra boasts an impressive resume — a Harvard business degree, countless speaking engagements, multiple Entrepreneur of the Year awards, several appearances on the vaunted Inc. 5000 list. However, as Aleksandra would attest, none of these accolades came easy. Aleksandra is an embodiment of the “American dream” — a US immigrant who got her hands dirty and built her empire from the ground. On the podcast, Aleksandra speaks to the entrepreneurial spirit, how to achieve your dream career, and the role that technology has played in making her own dreams a reality.
"Think about: What is it that you love? What do you know? What are the market trends and global trends? What are people willing to pay for? See where there's a synergy between those four lists that you've put together to see if you can develop a dream career."
"Make technology strategy part of the overall strategy of the business. If you're not doing it, you're falling behind on the competition... It is a driving force for every business."
"One of the most important things that we can do as brands is to create value and build community."
"In college, I was tasked to write a business plan. So, when I was 20 years old, I asked myself, 'What do I know? And what do I love?' And I wrote a business plan based on my passion."
"Uncertain times are the best times to go back to your core, identify what you want to do with your life, fine tune your idea, and do the market research. There's never a good time to start a business. At some point, you just need to do it."
"In business school, I learned that you need to make decisions with three letters — R.O.I. — and not make decisions with the other three letters — E.G.O."
"Talk to your customers. Ask them what is working and what is not working. Be willing to adjust your product to the current market."
"Just because I love dance and didn't become a professional ballerina on stage doesn't mean I can't still have a career in that area."
"I had an unstoppable desire to be successful. I didn't know how, and I didn't know when. But I knew I wanted to be successful."
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