Behind the Tote: Lauren Miller

Lauren Miller is the #girlboss you see and think to yourself ‘I don’t know how she does it’. She juggles driving growth and building a brand at work and a one-year-old at home, all the while looking utterly fabulous (yet to see her in a less-than-perfect outfit). She talks to us about Le Tote, her views on sustainable fashion, workwear uniform and how she would like to spend the 25th hour of the day!  


What do you love most about being part of a company like Le Tote?
There’s a lot I love about working at Le Tote but I think the best part of my job is knowing that I’m helping women feel good about themselves, and simplifying and making more fun the daily task of getting dressed. If we can help women feel great about how they look when they walk into a room so they can go kick butt doing whatever they do every day, then that’s a mission I will sign up for.
Sustainability is also important to me and I’m excited about how new business models like Le Tote are lightening fashion’s environmental footprint and making it easier for people to do more while owning less.

Let’s rewind a bit. How did your years at Google lay the foundation for your transition to retail-tech?
I joined Google in 2003 and the company was small and really scrappy. We launched ad operations in India and I volunteered to go to Hyderabad to help grow and train the team. I toured the country interviewing hundreds of recent college grads and set up processes so our team in India was aligned with what we were doing in Mountain View. So much of being a good marketer at a startup comes down to being a strong operator. I think I got that essential training during my early days at Google.

What are some metrics and KPIs that you use to measure the success/effectiveness of the marketing team at Le Tote?
We’re laser focused on growing the business, every day. This is measured in terms of new subscribers and also our success at keeping customers happy and engaged so they stay with us. This is both art and science. Though harder to measure, we also think about building brand awareness. When people are asked where they can do fashion rental for everyday clothes, are they starting to think about Le Tote in an unaided way? If yes, we’re making progress.

What are some qualities that make for a fantastic marketer?
Regardless of the role, I think a strong marketer for an early to mid-stage startup is someone who is both analytical and creative and can move fast in a fairly unstructured environment.

What is your secret for maximizing the day?
Efficiency is the name of the game, especially now that I have a baby at home and my hours at work are shorter than they’ve ever been.
The key is identifying the two or three things that I think will have the biggest impact every day. When I am heading into work, I mentally draft this list and then write it down when I get to the office. I check back in after lunch and shift the second half of the day if I’m not making progress on my priorities.


What does a typical morning in front of your closet look like?
The past years have seen mornings with three or four outfits and accessory change-outs and lots of frustration. With less time now I’ve decided to simplify and focus on easy pieces that are pretty interchangeable and  more minimalist than anything else. Deciding that that’s where I want to be style-wise has really made what I buy, what I rent and what I wear — and my mornings — so much easier.


What are your closet MVPs as a busy professional juggling a one-year-old?
Skinny jeans top my MVP list. I rotate three or four pairs (two blacks, one white and a denim). I think it’s important to have shoes that work with every kind of outfit. I have two key pairs of heels that go with everything (velvet kitten heels in black and taupe by Donald Pliner) and then there are tops I mix in (I especially favor oversized dress shirts). In San Francisco, you always need great outerwear and I love our Cupcakes & Cashmere military jacket. If I am not in my skinny jean uniform, I like wrap dresses (Ava has a nice lineup) — they look classy and really pulled together, plus they are also easy and comfortable. With a minimal color palette of black, white, tan, taupe with some denim mixed in, I do like the occasional pop. That’s where a big or bold accessory from Le Tote or something bought from my world travels comes in — perfect for a bit of color and a global vibe.

Finally, if you could add a 25th hour to the day, how would you like to spend it?
The bulk of it it would be with my son and I would try to get maybe 10 of those minutes for some needed me-time. Reading, meditating or taking my dogs for a quick walk around the block… just time to be kind of quiet.




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