I’m a retail technologist who loves to think about and implement the future of retail, design, innovation, leadership, and startups.
My passion rests in meeting the needs of customers; through integrating human-centered thinking, with brick-and-mortar and digital retail technology. I have been involved with store systems, ecommerce, and order management technologies for over 15 years, having held leadership positions in, or consulted to, numerous Tier -1 retailers including, TJX Cos, Staples, BJ’s, O’Reilly Auto Parts, and Uniqlo (Fast Retailing). In addition, I founded a luxury menswear brand, which was most known for designing and manufacturing high quality clothing for corporate executives, and professional athletes across the country. I am a principled thinker, who has deep curiosity; coupled with the discipline of deep work to constantly on board practical and strategic understanding of next gen technology and business models.
Currently, I lead customer development and engagements for Zebra’s inaugural intelligent automation for inventory visibility and operational excellence, SmartSight. Prior, I lead customer partnerships & strategy for an AI powered multi sensor platform, SmartLens, which truly digitizes the store floor. I help retailers navigate the ever-changing retail landscape; providing thought leadership, pragmatic insights, and innovative solutions on issues pertaining to the implications of Artificial Intelligence for business strategy, customer experience, inventory visibility, and staff productivity. As the “tip of the spear” for Zebra’s retail customers, I also drive product needs and prioritization, the “what” and “why”, back in to engineering.
I keep a keen eye on what’s potentially next, by staying closely involved in the Boston, New York, and Silicon Valley startup communities. I recently served as the program lead for the Startup Leadership Program, and has participated in startup programs through XRC Labs, Techstars, MassChallenge, and New York Fashion Tech Lab. I am also a long-standing member of the Consortium for Operational Excellence in Retailing (COER) out of HBS/Wharton, and the recently joined the Robotics & Analytics Council (RAC) out of Northwestern University.
Before retail, as VP of Product Management & Global Operations, I helped to start e4eNet. e4eNet was a cloud-based enterprise platform that handled the design for manufacturing process for printed circuit boards (PCBs), e4eNet was ultimately sold to IBM. Before, e4Enet I worked for IBM in a number of technical capacities.
For 8 years I honorably served in the Army National Guard as an infantryman and armored personnel carrier (APC) driver. I have a deep curiosity for culture and language. I speak conversational Japanese, and have traveled to numerous countries in Europe, Africa, and Asia for business. I earned my MBA from Babson College, and bachelor’s degree in management information systems from the University of Massachusetts.
The opinions expressed in this blog, are 100% my own. #BeAMaker
On: LinkedIn | @SmarterRetailer | shawn (at) shawnharris.com