dcsimg

Career Story: Retail Buyer For A Chain Of Gift Shops

Retail Buyer For A Chain Of Gift Shops

Job Title: Retail Buyer

Education: Certificate, Fashion Merchandising & Retailing, 916 Vo-Tech Institute •• BA, Business, Regents College, University of the State of New York

Previous Experience: As a teen-ager, I started work as a clerk in a clothing store. After that, I held several positions in the Navy Exchange & AAFES, including Procurement Clerk, Visual Merchandiser, & Retail Store Supervisor. I then worked for the Army Commissary System as a Merchandise Management Specialist, eventually working my way up to Merchandise Manager, overseeing 22 stores.

Job Tasks: My company has a chain of specialty gift shops, predominately in airports. We have patriotic-themed gifts, as well as regionally-themed items, geared mostly to visiting tourists.

My job as the retail buyer for the company, includes a wide variety of tasks. I place orders for all of the merchandise, some of which is shipped directly to our warehouse & some which is shipped directly to the stores. I negotiate prices & review all potential new items for our stores. We have many items which are unique to our company & we develop our own designs for many of our products. This can be very fun, as you get to see your ideas on a product & it's even better if it sells well. I travel to gift shows/markets about five times a year to see new products & meet with current & new vendors. Occasionally, vendors come to our corporate office to show their new products.

I also am responsible for the inventory control in the company & participate in store inventories, as well as maintaining inventory data in our master computer system. I help to ensure that our stores are following proper inventory management practices & sometimes develop new procedures, if needed. I also interact with store managers, on a regular basis, to assist them in inventory management, to move slow-selling product, or to ensure they have enough on hand of products that are selling very well.

I participate in setting up the merchandise for a new store opening also, or to rearrange the merchandise in an existing store to help improve sales.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is interacting with a variety of different people. When you deal repetitively with sales representatives from different companies, you get to know them very well & you develop a friendly relationship with them. Also, our company focuses on working as a team, so we work closely together developing ideas & we have fun doing it.

The worst part of my job are people that call on a busy day & start launching into the history of the "wonderful" product they think they have, without bothering to ask if I have time to talk to them.

Job Tips:
1. The best thing I've done in my working life has been to always pursue new job opportunites to improve my position & my experience. I've worked a lot of different retail jobs & the cumulative experience helped me more than once to get a job I was interviewing for.

2. Be willing to work outside your job description. When someone from another department within the company asks for your assistance, don't say "It's not my job". Help them & you may learn something that could lead to a new job or even a promotion.

3. Ask for more responsibility. You need to learn how to make decisions & by taking more responsibilty in your job, you can learn by doing, including by making mistakes.

Popular Schools offering Acquisitions Procurement Management Programs

quickinfoThese schools offer particularly quick info upon request, and we have written detailed profiles for each (click school names to see the profiles).

Request info from multiple schools, by clicking the Request Info links.

Matching School Ads

Try Your Introductory Course Risk Free

  • Programs: Master of Arts in Human Dynamics
  • Degrees: Master

Push Your Creativity To The Next Level

  • Programs: Music Business, Bachelor of Science (Online), Entertainment Business, Master of Science (Online)
  • Degrees: Bachelor, Master

A degree from CTU connects you to what matters most: powerful professional network, real-world professional faculty and innovative technology. Once you earn your degree you hit the ground running.

  • Programs: Master of Science in Management – Organizational Leadership and Change, Doctor of Management - Organizational Development and Change (Executive Format)
  • Degrees: Master, Doctorate
  • Programs: BS - Project Management, Master - Project Management, Undergraduate Certificate - Project Management
  • Degrees: Bachelor, Master, Certificate
The Art Institutes system of schools
North Hollywood, Sacramento, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Francisco, Santa Ana, Santa Monica, Sunnyvale

With an education from an Art Institutes school, imagine what you could create.

  • Programs: Culinary Management (BS), Hospitality Food & Beverage Management (BS)
  • Degrees: Bachelor

Grow Your Career with the University of Saint Mary

  • Programs: Masters of Business Administration - Enterprise Risk Management, Masters of Business Administration - Marketing and Advertising, Masters of Business Administration - Human Resources Management, more...
  • Degrees: Master

Purdue University offers a strong foundation of tradition and history.

  • Programs: Master of Science in Hospitality and Tourism Management
  • Degrees: Master

Pursue a certificate, master, or doctorate degree in Psychology at The Chicago School for Professional Psychology.

  • Programs:
  • Degrees:

See What’s Possible When You Earn a Degree at Florida Tech 100% Online

  • Programs: MA in Organizational Leadership
  • Degrees: Master

Get the career of your dreams with an education from the Los Angeles Film School.

  • Programs: Bachelor of Science, Entertainment Business
  • Degrees: Bachelor
Matching School Ads
You are visiting:

Find a school near you

What are Career Stories?

Career Stories are concise, real-world career overviews written by people relating their personal career experiences and wisdom. They provide invaluable insights and mentoring advice to students and career changers.

Most stories include:

  • a typical day or project
  • tips and advice
  • best and worst parts
  • educational background
  • previous experience

Browse hundreds of Career Stories

More Details On This Career

Please also see our detailed information about Wholesale And Retail Buyers, including:

Back to Top