Chris Bell

How do you explain your profession to people outside of the industry? What do you find most exciting and/or rewarding about this work?

We’re an ecommerce company, selling great products to customers globally. We launch both great products and brands, and we acquire best-in-class or rapidly growing products and brands from other entrepreneurs and we put them on our platform to accelerate their growth. I love selling great products. I love when people use a product and love it, and I know it’s one of ours. I was checking out of a hotel in NYC recently and one of our products (ZapIt!) was behind the checkout counter and when I asked about it, the two employees raved about it. It’s very fun to be able to see how your company and products impact people.

What milestone or accomplishment have you made in your career that you are most proud of?

I am most proud of the impact that I’ve been able to have on others and their careers. I try to make it a priority to invest in others and it is great to see when they are successful. When I founded Perch, a very high percentage of our early employees were people who had worked with me or for me previously, and the fact that they were willing to follow me to a very early stage venture meant a lot.

What is one notable achievement (personal or professional) that you've made over the past year?

Raising money from SoftBank was a really unexpected and cool experience. When I started Perch, fundraising was relatively difficult so it was interesting to see all the investor interest that appeared suddenly. I feel very fortunate to have attracted one of the most well-known investment firms in the world.

What is a piece of media that has inspired you professionally?

“How to Win Friends and Influence People” is a timeless classic. I have read the book several times and I have given away a number of copies of it to others. It contains relatively simple advice that might seem to be common sense, but every time I read the book I realize how few people apply it. (Sometimes, I also forget to apply it too!)

Please share one fun or surprising fact about yourself:

I am one of 10 kids and was born on an Air Force Base in Japan.