20 Questions with Kalman Polak

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By Published On: December 5, 20220 Comments

Chatting supporting local, fancy pastries, and Larry David with Kalman Polak, CEO at MySale.

1.How do you define success? 

I feel successful when the people I lead are successful. If I have helped them to develop and grow, if I have offered them an exciting future they want to work towards and created a business they want to get behind, then I feel successful.  At Ozsale I want create a culture that fosters growth and propels people to sucess.

2.What is one thing that retailers do that drives you up the wall? 

I’ll stick to online retailers with marketplaces; I struggle with the lack of curation from overseas sellers on some of our major marketplaces when it comes to products you can purchase locally at better prices. It creates a tyranny of choice and customer confusion and contributes to delayed shipping times. There is nothing wrong with adding overseas sellers to your marketplaces provided they offer a real alternative. I think supporting the local seller market is paramount for the success of Australian marketplaces.

3.When was the first time you shopped online? 

Waaaay back in 2009 I was all over eBay, decorating my bachelor pad with second-hand furniture.

4.What was your first job? 

I started working alongside my parents at the Victoria Market every weekend from the age of 8 or 9. I would set up the racking with women’s apparel, get my bum bag ready and start selling. 

5.What kind of student were you in high school?

School didn’t really play to my strengths but I enjoyed Business Studies and Sport. I would have to say most of my education in business really happened on the job. I was a keen observer of the inner workings of business and thrived in real-life situations. 

6.What is your favourite film? 

Tough question. I feel like I want to say Pulp Fiction, but there are so many others. I’ll add Napoleon Dynamite for the laughs, and Cider House Rules for the sobs.

7.What is one of your guilty pleasures?

Eating Danishes and fancy pastries. 

8.What is an assumption about you that is completely false?

That I’m older than my brother, Guy Polak. Drives me crazy.

9.What is one song that you would request a DJ to play at a party?

It depends on what’s trending. Currently it would be Sofi Tukker, ‘Purple Hat’, but an all-time favourite would be INXS, ‘Need you tonight’.

10.What is the best joke you’ve ever heard?

Anything that comes out of Larry David’s mouth.

11.What are three words that would describe you?

It depends on who you ask, but my friends would say, ‘annoying, loyal and funny,’ if you asked my colleagues, I think they would say, ‘approachable, dedicated and tactical.’ 

12.What’s on the top of your bucket list? 

It’s one that I can’t control, but I’d love to see my beloved St Kilda Football Club win a Premiership. I’d climb Mount Everest after that!

13.What’s the farthest you’ve ever been from home?

In 2006 I went backpacking across Southeast Asia and Europe – probably the furthest country would have been Czech Republic 

14.What risks are worth taking?

I don’t believe I ever take ‘risks’ really. I am calculated in my decision-making and use experience and information to guide me. But I do make decisions quickly and move fast to put plans into action.

15.Do you have any secret talents? 

I can play the drums. I can also use my hands or feet to hit any target with a ball.

16.Do you have any pets?

I have the most beautiful medium sized Groodle (Golden Retriever/Poddle), Bamba. 

17.Are you usually early or late to events?

I used to run late, but I fixed that problem. It’s far less stressful to be ahead of where you need to be, than behind it.

18.What is one skill you would love to master? 

I would love to be able to separate work and life a bit better.

19.If you had the opportunity to take an international gap year and do whatever you wanted, where would you move and what would you do? 

An ideal gap year would be to travel as a family and enable my kids to experience different cultures. I would love to take them to Italy and Japan. We would do everything those countries have to offer and live it up!

20.If you could have dinner with anyone, living or dead, who would it be?

Larry David. 

You can find Kalman at MySale 

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About the Author: Rosalea Catterson

Rosalea is the Editor of Power Retail. With a keen interest in consumer behaviour and tech, she covers everything ecommerce and hosts the Power Retail Power Talks Podcast.

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