Vitamin Shoppe CTO/COO Andrew Laudato
Andy Laudato has an incomparable level of experience in retail tech. In addition to developing groundbreaking customer-facing tech, he has the superpower of being able to understand the overall business and design solutions to optimize for it. He’s a business leader first, and a technologist second. Accordingly, he has recently stepped from the role of Chief Technology Officer into Chief Operating Officer at Vitamin Shoppe. Topics by time stamp: 0:45 — Andy and technology at Pier One: Where they started, and how did he lead the tech team to have a greater impact (apparently winning Halloween is a good start!) 8:04 — Leadership as a CIO: What’s at the heart of it, and what’s unique about leading in tech as opposed to other areas? 10:25 — For developers: how do I know if I should stay a developer and pursue growth as an expert, or pursue growth as a manager and move up that way? 14:40 — Advice for non-technical people working with development teams 17:32 — What makes the best teams? 21:15 — 4000 years of retail, in 2 minutes or less. As a tech leader, who is Andy’s customer and what makes them brag about his team? Plus, Andy ribs Colleen about still writing checks. 28:35 — Andy’s prediction of what retail tech will be in 2050 (think Minority Report, but in a good way?) 38:35 — What’s 2020 about for the Vitamin Shoppe? Plus, Andy talks about reducing online order time to reach the store from 45 minutes to a matter of seconds. 43:39 — Great advice for both tech and business-oriented people early in their career 46:10 — What does the Vitamin Shoppe do better than anyone else in the world, and what does that mean for its tech?
Duration: 49 min