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Tight Ship pairs their proprietary tools and processes with extensive experience and expertise to help businesses evaluate and gain market share through digital marketing.


Introduce yourself.

Stephen Oklesson, CEO of Tight Ship LLC

What does a typical day look like for you?
My business partner and I created Tight Ship in part to allow ourselves to enjoy a flexible schedule with plenty of time to spend with family and friends. So a typical day for me starts with plenty of morning time with my wife and newborn daughter. Once at the office, I check in with each of our clients; we believe that technology can only help maximize what you’ve created through your personal, honest connections with your clients. At this stage of our growth, plenty of time is spent on logistics, but we also make a point of dedicating time every week towards finding new efficiencies in our processes. The more we use technology to improve our efficiency, the more time we have to focus on the important human relationships.

What inspired you to start your company?
Through our experience as director/VPs at larger marketing agencies, we wanted to solve some recurring issues that we thought were creating subpar experiences for both clients and employees. Namely, we sought to leverage technology to improve efficiency so that the focus of our client work could be on connecting with and understanding clients’ unique business needs rather than typing in spreadsheets or adjusting levers in an interface. We also believed that large agencies severely undervalued their talent, so we designed Tight Ship to allow for fair compensation for the experienced resources that are providing the true value to clients.

What’s your favorite thing about Virginia?
I love the diversity that Virginia offers. Growing up in the Tidewater area, I boated, fished, crabbed, and swam. Then I spent 10 years in Charlottesville where I enjoyed the mountains — hiking, beautiful drives, and vineyards. Now I’m loving the perfect combination of city and neighborhood in Richmond. Great restaurants and bars and a vibrant commercial presence, but also the small town joy of running into your neighbor as you walk to the grocery store or walk down by the river.

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