Amanda Olson

Building a large team and outsourcing tasks doesn’t always correlate with doing things better or more effectively. Sometimes as an entrepreneur has to do the dirty work themselves.

Dr. Amanda Olson is a dedicated and passionate physical therapist specializing in treatment of pelvic floor disorders including incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse, pelvic pain, and pregnancy related issues. She earned a doctorate degree physical therapy in 2008, and she has years of diverse clinical experience. She is certified as an advanced pelvic floor practitioner (CAPP-PF) by the American Physical Therapy Association and the Herman and Wallace Pelvic Institute (PRPC).

Additionally, she is the President and Chief Clinical Officer at Intimate Rose. Her mission is to improve the health of women worldwide. At Intimate Rose, passionate staff and quality products provide excellent services to women.

Where did the idea for your company come from?

CEO Aaron Wilt founded the company to address a gap in the market pertaining to solutions for stress urinary incontinence in women. He became aware of the problem by way of friendly jokes among female family members and sought to create a solution by creating a product using medical grade silicone that was comfortable and easy to use. He brought me on immediately to help advise customers and clinicians. From that first product we worked together to develop out a comprehensive brand of women’s health products to address problems ranging from urinary incontinence, pelvic pain, and nutritional support for women throughout the lifespan. The products provide solutions to issues that are often embarrassing if not traumatizing for women in order to help them solve their problems and reach their goals.

What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?

I am a mother of two boys under the age of five so no two days are truly alike and productivity is relative! I typically wake up around six am or earlier, try to answer all emails, shuffle the kids to school, then work on product launches or educational content until I pick the kids back up. When the kids go to bed I work again. I try to stay productive using lists and task management in the Asana app, and I keep daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly tasks written and readily available to ensure I stay on track.

How do you bring ideas to life?

Product development is shared between myself, and CEO Aaron Wilt. Generally when one of us has an idea for a new product Aaron will research the feasibility of manufacturing it in our vision. Once manufacturing has been established he manages that aspect and I begin creating the educational content for customers and health care providers including videos, written forms, brochures, and product inserts.

What’s one trend that excites you?

In my professional world, women’s health is exploding with more women talking about their sensitive issues, and more good information readily available. There are new apps and websites delivering quality education to women regarding common health issues in several languages. I am excited to see that women are feeling more empowered to fix these issues and support one another.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

I believe that goal setting and relentless work to achieve those goals has made us as productive. I set daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and yearly goals with what we hope to accomplish written by hand, in ink. I keep them visible at all times, in my kitchen so that I can check them and be sure that we are on track.

What advice would you give your younger self?

I would tell myself to feel free to write down and draw ideas of what could be, but that does not exist. I’ve always loved writing and implementing creativity into projects, and that is not usually a component of the lifestyle of a healthcare professional. I would tell myself to keep continue to be curious and developing out skills that don’t necessarily fall into the box of medical provider.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.

Building a large team and outsourcing tasks doesn’t always correlate with doing things better or more effectively. Sometimes as an entrepreneur has to do the dirty work themselves.

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

Cut through the nonsense. In manufacturing, working with employees, and contractors. Hear not just what people say, but understand how their information fits into the framework of what you are tying to accomplish. Analyze their incentives. Unfortunately not everyone means well, and often there can be a bias based on their beliefs of what is right for themselves vs the company.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?

We have continued to develop exceptional value offers of free education and support to both our customers (B2C) and clinicians (B2B). By providing educational videos and support groups we have established that care and that we want to help them on a grander scale than simply what our products offer.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

Making the assumption that people will work against their own personal incentives and do the right thing. When you hire you must be sure that your employees have properly aligned incentives with the business.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

Someone should make a device that helps skiers locate a lost ski in deep snow. Something along the lines of an app on phone that can beacon to skis. Any skier who has spent 2 hours poking around in powder looking for a ski and missing out on valuable ski time can relate to this!

What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?

I bought an ILIFE automated vacuum cleaner (similar to Rumba) that was closer to the $100 mark, less expensive than a Rumba. My youngest child is allergic to dust and our floors have to be kept clean. I make all of our food from scratch and work 50-60 hours per week. I don’t have a house cleaner so this is one less thing I have to do around the house!

What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?

Asana has helped our team with productivity. It allows us to create project management flow on a virtual desk, assign each other tasks, post our work or images, and track progress on projects.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

Daring Greatly by Brene’ Brown. She discusses vulnerability in both the personal and professional realms. She opens the book with this quote: “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.”

What is your favorite quote?

“You see what you look for. You look for only what you know”.

Key learnings:

• Building out a large team of employees may not always be the right step. Sometimes slower growth or keeping your team smaller results in better quality work and productivity
• Be ready to cut through the nonsense. In manufacturing, working with employees, and contractors.
• Listen not just to what people say, but what their actions say. Analyze their incentives behind their actions in correlation with their place in your business.
• Provide extra value to customers in some way- whether it is in educational content, or some manner of making their life easier. This creates loyalty and all around good!