Angela Hsu, senior vice president of marketing and e-commerce and Lamps Plus, is a Women in Retail Leadership Circle member and retail veteran! She leads a versatile team of 40, has built her career on helping companies develop their e-commerce business, and was included in Chain Store Age’s “Top 10 Women in Retail Technology” in 2019. We asked Angela some rapid-fire questions so you can get to know her better.

  1. What’s the best book you’ve read recently? I just finished rereading Mitch Albom’s “Tuesdays with Morrie”. The story is a great reminder of what’s truly important in life, which keeps me coming back to it.
  2. What excites you most about retail? The fact that retail is ever-changing in terms of consumer preferences, technology and competition makes it exciting. A retail leader needs to be a visionary who can strategize long term, while also executing short-term plans in a dynamic landscape.
  3. Who is on the guest list for your ideal dinner party? I’d have to say Heather Hasson, co-CEO and founder of FIGS. In her keynote at WIRLC’s On the Road event in Los Angeles, she explained how she created demand in the medical scrubs industry that had not previously existed. That achievement alone would make for a great dinner conversation.
  4. What’s one thing you wish you knew when you were younger? That everyone is unique and special in their own way, and to be comfortable with who I am.
  5. Where do you do your best thinking? While walking along the beaches of Malibu. It’s my happy place!
  6. When you’re traveling for work, what’s a must-pack item? My Amazon Echo Dot.
  7. What’s the hardest thing about your job? Finding that work-life balance between my demanding career and teenage daughter can be hard at times. I often have to remind myself that family lasts forever, but a job does not.
  8. What’s your favorite aspect of your job? The retail industry allows me to take on new challenges, solve complex problems, and innovate with new ideas and technology. That dynamism is my absolute favorite part of this work.
  9. What’s the best advice that you’ve ever received? A friend once told me, “never mind the little things.” Throughout my career, this advice has helped me to manage my emotions while navigating office politics and reminded me not to forget the bigger picture.
  10. What time of day are you most productive? I’m most productive in the early mornings. I love the fresh, crisp morning air and that sense of a brand new start to the day.
  11. What’s the biggest surprise you’ve had in your career? Learning that I’m far more resilient than I realized. There have been plenty of setbacks throughout my career, but I’ve always managed to pick myself up and keep moving forward.
  12. What’s your favorite app? LinkedIn.
  13. How do you decompress? My daughter and I take walks together. We talk about our day and update each other on life. I sometimes worry that I don’t spend enough time with her, but moments like those are extremely fulfilling for me and a nice way to decompress.
  14. What barriers have you had to overcome in your career? Right after business school, I landed my dream job working on global expansion for Warner Bros. retail stores. It was amazing — I traveled to over 30 countries with some of the most talented people I’d ever met. But the entire division was shut down rather suddenly due to currency devaluation. I was devastated. Being laid off after pouring my heart and soul into that job was hard; I couldn’t get out of bed for days. Reflecting on that experience, I recognize that had I not been laid off, I would never have switched to e-commerce and expanded my experience in retail. As a result, I’ve learned not to take any opportunity for granted. It’s important to enjoy the journey along the way because nothing lasts forever.
  15. What advice would you give to the next generation of female leaders? Aim to network for the long term and try to be a valuable resource to your network without expecting anything in return. You’ll find that life comes full circle.
  16. If you weren’t working in the retail industry, what do you think you’d be doing? I would devote my time to the nonprofit sector in order to give back. Decades ago, I was among the 3 percent of women in engineering. Now my daughter, who loves robotics, is one of the few girls in her technology camps. Recently, I joined the board of directors for, a social justice organization that fosters STEM skills in young children. I would love to see more women in technology by helping increase the number of girls who pursue STEM, both academically and in the workplace.
  17. How would you describe your leadership style? As a leader, my goal is to foster a culture of intellectual curiosity, innovation and creativity while driving toward measurable results. In order to achieve this, I share a vision, set clear goals, embrace new ideas, collaborate with my team, and take calculated risks. It’s important to me to be relatable, transparent and candid in my leadership.