It has been a year of growth, challenge and opportunity since I graduated from the University of Arizona and I want to share some of my experiences with you. Within a month of graduation, I moved to New York City to begin my career as an assistant buyer with Macy’s, Inc. I had previously interned with Macy’s between my junior and senior year of college and it was my goal to secure a permanent position with this outstanding company. After my move, I immediately entered the Merchant Executive Development Program (EDP) as an Assistant Buyer trainee in infant clothing. During my EDP I learned about numerous aspects of the company, completed a capstone project and trained with the infant buying team to learn more about my day-to-day activities. Upon completing my training I was placed with a buying team for boys’ classifications. My team includes a buyer, associate buyer and I am the assistant buyer. We work with a complementary team of planning professionals as well. We buy and manage product for over 655 stores across the country, and our book of business is significant. Buying involves extensive analysis of product costs and sales, vendor analysis and negotiation, monitoring the process to get product to the stores, keeping up with trends, and maintaining focus on margin and profitability.
My Retailing and Consumer Sciences classes gave me the foundation to excel in many aspects of my current position. For example, several classes prepared me to analyze mark up, margin and provided the basics of sales planning. Most importantly, all of my retail classes challenged me to strategize and work in a team as well as deliver a clear presentation. These are skills I truly value in my position today. So much of what I have experienced thus far is at the heart of a retailers’ profitability and success, and yet I have only scratched the surface of what I need to know.
In addition to solid training and interesting work, Macy’s has also afforded me the opportunity to build new friendships with a host of smart and energetic colleagues. I am so pleased with my decision to start my career here – great friends, a great job and life in New York City has resulted in an amazing year. I also have to thank the Terry J. Lundgren Center for Retailing for offering the events and resources that helped me secure my position after graduation. I would not be where I am today without the Lundgren Center.