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To continue on from my previous experience within the retail industry, I took on a job at Office Shoes in Wimbledon. Here I am part of a social work team who are always a pleasure to work with. Through the first year of University I missed working with the public, meeting new faces from day to day and learning to deal with different personalities, manage different situations, create new strategies, all parallel with taking any opportunity I could to please my visual creative cravings.
This Job gives me a lot of responsibilities when it comes to efficiency and appearance. I often work in the stock rooms to create a smooth running process when it comes to the runners getting shoes. I take great satisfaction in ensuring that It looks the best it can out back and on the shop floor. I often help out with visual merchandising on the shop floor. When it comes to the appearance I become a bit of a perfectionist.
In this job I was expected to complete tasks left by the supervisor, as a team with my colleagues or on my own. These tasks would range from; putting out new stock, building displays, managing delivery to serving on the till and dealing with all customer enquiries. This is where I feel that my communication skills were vital and throughout my time there, I could tell these skills vastly improved.
Beside those tasks, i was in charge of visual merchandising the store. I had to make sure that we kept the store up to date with new displays and ensuring that all new marketing tools and promotions were used to the best of their ability. This ensured that all our customers were up to date with any new trends, products and promotions. I thoroughly enjoyed doing this as once I had finished I felt that I had created something interesting and eye catching which always made me smile. This strength of mine was often picked up on by our area merchandiser and other rival stores VM teams, who would often compliment my work on occasional store visits.
Finishing these visual projects at work and gaining praise from management gave me more from my job than just a pay check.
I left Topman in Bournemouth because I was moving up to London to begin University. I thoroughly enjoyed my time here as myself and many of my colleagues became good friends out of work as well as in. I also found the position itself and the job roles that accompanied it very fulfilling.
In between my time at Topman and starting at College I worked for Lloyd’s shoes. They are a concession department within Topman and most Arcadia brands. I enjoyed working here and being responsible for the company’sdepartment in store. This role expected me to manage the stock and deliveries’, make sure the paper work was kept up to date, which included daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly and yearly figures. Other responsibilities included using a money mapping system to find the stores best sellers so they could be moved into key sight lines to optimise sales opportunities. There were also weekly news letters, monthly display guide lines andoccasional meetings which kept me up to date with the company’s trends and news.
Although there were display guidelines, I was still required to use my own ideas for merchandising the main department and looking for available opportunities around the store for further displays. On regular visits to the store, my area manager complimented me on my display ideas and visual merchandising skills. My displays played a major role in boosting sales for the company within the store.
The intense year at college made sure that when I started at LCC, It wasn't daunting in the slightest, very much the opposite infact. I found that I had changed from a straight academic institution to a place that wanted you to just soak up as much culture as you could and just let your imagination do your thinking when it comes to assignments.
Starting back in 2010 Virgin Trains, Daz washing powder, Petit Bateau, Mini, Oxfam were the main brands which we worked on. Creating Advertising Campaigns for all, working along with regular visits from industry professionals it was a great way to start of the course. Along with these there were of corse a couple of theoretical assignments. To be truthful over the matter, you could say that these weren't really top of my list. But then are they ever for a creative?
Year two, of which I am currently completing, the projects have become more professional, more demanding and without doubt more exciting. Already I have been working with a recently born company, Vivo Barefoot. With the outcome of creating a campaign to push across the experience you will gain by taking on their way of running. the final product was a range of natural material running lanes crossed with a highway code.
Photography, Sound Arts and Typography are subjects that I have taken up this year along side the course. These have been to gain a better understanding and more in depth experience within other arts that I appreciate. Sound arts was not quite what I expected but however it did teach me some artists and instruments that I had not before known.
I went back to a part time position at Topman after starting an Access to Higher Education course. I decided that I wanted to get back into education with the intentions of starting up my own company in marketing one day. This corse was perfect for getting me up to the standard that Universities wanted. When it came to applying for University I received offers from London Met and Greenwich, both for a marketing degree. However I was looking for something not quite so tame, so I knew straight away when I received an offer from London College of Communication that I would jump at the opportunity to work on the Ba Hon's Creative Advertising Strategy course.
I finished this course with a distinction profile.