Nasty Gal Founder Sophia Amoruso On What She Looks For in Hires

Nasty Gal founder Sophia Amoruso on what she looks for in hires

what does it take to work at Nasty Gal?

Sophia Amoruso, founder of Nasty Gal – the number one growing retailer in the U.S. – told a room full of successful women, deemed by Marie Claire Magazine as the new power-guard, that she hired her first employee because she liked her skirt, amongst other things. “She had a nice Italian last name, I liked her skirt and she was nice,” said Amoruso. She also found this employee off of Craigslist. It doesn’t sound like the most reliable system for finding employees, but when it comes to Amoruso and her ideas and tactics, trust everything this woman says.

Her company went from an eBay page selling vintage clothing (that she found while scavenging through Goodwill bins) to earning $100 million in revenue last year. A lot of the growth was due to Nasty Gal’s amazing social media engagement with its devoted customer base, according to The New York Times. Last year, Nasty Gal also began producing its own line of ready-to-wear clothes (which now accounts for 30% of sales), launched a magazine, and started a shoe line.

And that employee she said she “stalked” after finding her on Craigslist is now her buying director. But does she still use skirt aesthetics and Craigslist to make hires? Amoruso told the women of Marie Claire’s New Guard, she now tends to use LinkedIn and very expensive recruiters. So what does she look for in a potential employee? Of course, someone that is capable of doing the job well but also someone who is self-aware. She seeks out a person who knows their weaknesses as well as their positives.

She told Refinery 29 earlier this year that she also looks for employees who are comfortable with confrontation. “We all have different opinions, and that’s what helps exploring different options for the business. I like to say I hire people who disagree with me. I like people who are sensitive to the environment and can follow through.”

Amoruso will be dispensing more of her smart and interesting career tips in her upcoming book, #GirlBoss: How To Write Your Own Rules While Turning Heads And Turning Profits, which will come out in May. “The most obvious thing would be to do a style book, but I was way more excited to do a business book,” Amoruso told WWD.  “The book is how you can follow your nose and be open to different possibilities to your future. It’s the business book for the girl who didn’t go to an Ivy League school, and is somewhat of a life bible for every girl.”

Well, we can’t wait.

Photo courtesy of: Refinery29

Meredith Lepore

Meredith is the former editor in chief of the women's career site, The Grindstone. Her work has appeared in Marie Claire @ Work, The Jane Dough, DailyWorth,, Business Insider and Learnvest. She earned her Masters in Magazine, Newspaper and Online journalism from the Newhouse School at Syracuse University. Meredith resides in New York full time and enjoys reading, jogging, SoulCycle and playing with her small dog, Otis.


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