As a merchandising intern at Nike this summer, I was able to learn from an amazing community of individuals. I was placed on the Global Nike Sportswear Merchandising team and focused most of my time on footwear. Coming into the internship I had very little knowledge into the day-to-day activities of a merchant. I also didn’t know how much I would grow as an individual outside of my professional development.
My merchandising team was brilliant and extremely welcoming. During the first weeks, I had scheduled meetings with each of them to ask questions about the business and learn about their career paths and personal life. These conversations were vital to my integration into the team; they made me feel like I belonged from day one.
I had the opportunity to work on an individual project for the majority of my internship. As part of my responsibilities, I was tasked with developing and implementing a way of analyzing Nike’s segmentation strategy across the Athletic Specialty and Category Specialty channels of distribution. This required me to network across North America and Western Europe geography merchants and sales teams to obtain data on bookings and customer segments.
Outside of my functional team, I was also placed on a Cross-Functional Intern team and given an additional project, which revolved around member services and mobile technology. This project gave me the chance to meet a number of other interns outside of my area of expertise, as well as interact with leaders in the company like the CTO Wilf Russell and VP of Nike+ BJ Naedele. I was also given the chance to present our idea, with my team, to a panel of top leaders from across the company.
My experiences this summer far exceeded my expectations. I was able to learn so much and become a valuable part of a high functioning team. The people I met will forever be a part of who I am and how I approach my life. I hope to pursue a future in merchandising in the athletic industry and continue to challenge myself to become a better leader.