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Harley Finkelstein: Breaking down barriers for independent retail

April 28th, 2021 47:10 mins.
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Harley Finkelstein joined Shopify in 2010. Originally as a merchant selling t-shirts on the platform. Today he serves as President of the company and his passion for entrepreneurship is as alive as ever. As president of Shopify, Harley's life mission is to empower as many entrepreneurs as he can and remove every barrier to entrepreneurship possible.

What exactly does Harley do on an average day at the office? What are the big challenges Shopify is working on now, and what's in store for Shopify in the future?

In this episode we dive into all that, and more!

Some of the topics we discuss are:

  • What does a day at Shopify look like for Harley?
  • What is Harley most passionate about right now.
  • What does it mean to requalify for your job every year?
  • What is Harley so passionate about entrepreneurship?
  • The difference between a business owner and an entrepreneur.
  • What does mentorship mean to Harley, and what he recommends for you.
  • What are the ecommerce trends, and challenges Shopify is tackling?
  • What chapters of Shopify are written, and what's left to write?
  • What are some of the most unknown advantages and benefits of Shopify?
  • Oh, and what did Harley eat for breakfast!

Our guest

Harley Finkelstein photo

Harley Finkelstein, Shopify President, Shopify

Harley Finkelstein is an entrepreneur, lawyer, and the President of Shopify. He founded his first company at age 17 while a student at McGill. Harley completed his law degree as well as his MBA at the University of Ottawa, where he co-founded the JD/MBA Student Society and the Canadian MBA Oath. Harley is an Advisor to Felicis Ventures, and one of the “Dragons” on CBC’s Next Gen Den. Recently, he received the Canadian Angel Investor of the Year Award, Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 Award, and was inducted into the Order of Ottawa. From 2014 to 2017 Harley was on the Board of the C100, and from 2017 to 2020 he was on to the Board of Directors of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). Harley is currently starring on Discovery Channel’s I Quit, a television series about hopeful entrepreneurs who decide to quit their 9-5 jobs to focus full-time on their side hustles.

Full transcript

Jay: Harley, thank you so much for coming on the podcast, man. It’s really good to have you here.