Responses from Chief Executive Michael Dubin

Dollar Shave Club

Marina del Rey

BUSINESS: Razors and grooming products

FOUNDED: 2012

TWO-YEAR REVENUE GROWTH: 1,525 percent

2014 REVENUE: $65 million

What did you do to achieve this rate of growth?

We created a brand, products and experience that members love; then we told a very resonant story around a key problem we aim to solve. Our direct relationship with our members is a key competitive advantage over incumbents like Procter & Gamble. We can talk to them, ask them what they want and then go build it for them whether that’s a digital product or physical product.

How did you manage the growing workload? For example, did you have to add space, hire more employees or move into new facilities?

We think a lot about organizational design at Dollar Shave Club. Having a healthy organization is the biggest competitive advantage you can have. We now have a 160-person team of incredibly talented specialists who are dedicated to fulfilling the brand promise. We recently moved into a 26,000-square-foot space to accommodate our growing team.

What were the biggest obstacles holding you back from growing? How did you overcome them?

Access to high-quality talent is always a challenge and ultimately it’s great people that make you successful. As an entrepreneur, you’re always selling great talent on “why you” and “why your mission.” Even when you grow to be 160 employees as we have, you’ve got to get out there yourself and make the case. That never ends.

How do you manage expectations after such strong growth?

We never rest on our laurels or spend too much time congratulating ourselves for past wins. They’re fun to celebrate in the moment, but then you’ve got to move on. Great companies disrupt themselves and stay hungry and it’s not always a guarantee you’ll get it right.

What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned over the last three years?

Nothing happens as fast as you want it to and sometimes that’s a good thing.

Is there anything you would have done differently?

No. Maybe take more vacation. Rest and reflection is important, and that must happen away from the office.

Does your location in the L.A. area help or hinder your growth?

I love being in Los Angeles. L.A. has a special mix of creative and technical talent. It’s an eclectic place with a lot of diversity and personality, which makes it special. The tech community here is very supportive of one another and eager to help. We’re proud to be one of the companies growing the next generation of leaders in L.A.

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