Lisa Villeneuve, theme specialist at Shopify

Ottawa - Canada
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Who are you: 

I’m Lisa Villeneuve, theme critic by day and movie enthusiast by night.

Your current job: 

I am a Theme Specialist at Shopify where I review theme design submissions and provide feedback to designers. I also run code reviews to help make themes in the Shopify Theme Store bug free and easy to use.

In which city are you located?


A word to define what kind of worker you are:


What tools are essential to your life (app, software, etc..)

My list of essential tools could go on and on - a few key players are Shopify, Sublime Text, Typora, Slack, and Monosnap.While these are essential to get the job done, other tools like Clear and Trello help me stay on track with deadlines and task lists.

What does your office space look like?

The Shopify office emulates the diversity of our teams. Each floor has a it’s own theme giving you the opportunity to work in a variety of aesthetic atmospheres. For example, our prohibition floor features dark wood and secret rooms, while our great outdoor floor features log cabins and bear-shaped bean bags. My personal favourite is the sixth floor metropolis theme which features lots of bright colors and fun posters.

There are also a variety of room types giving you the flexibility to go between having a room to yourself to a room to collaborate with others.

What kind of music do you listen when you are working ?

If I need to focus on digesting a large amount of information I’ll listen to instrumental music such as chillstep. Generally, I’ll find a playlist on Youtube that I like and put it on replay.

Do you have a way to organize your day to maximize your work ?

Definitely. I try to tackle my emails and notifications first thing in the morning so I can clear out all the distractions for the day. Then I choose the largest task and use the time to focus on that only while I have the energy to power through it. After, I’ll use my time in the day to wind down and focus on the smaller ones.

What tips would you give to improve productivity ?

Productivity is so important in the workplace. My best advice would be to ask questions. There will always be someone with more experience to tap for advice and insights.

You're better than your colleagues to :

My strengths lie in my ability to disarm people and allow them to feel comfortable being themselves.

What is the best advice anyone has given you ?

がんばってください, or Ganbatte Kudasai, is a Japanese saying. A literal translation is “to stubbornly persevere” but I use it to remind myself that if you persevere you will eventually succeed.

What is your best tip for saving time ?

Don’t say yes to everything. Learn to say no and delegate.

What is your routine start and end of the day ?

Coffee, enough said.

Aside from your computer and your phone, what gadget can you not you go without?

Portable charger, because what good is a phone if the battery is dead.