Our client is a successful, well-established company that fosters a start-up culture of creativity and develops award-winning, innovative products.
ABOUT THE ROLE:
As a hands-on, Product Development Director, you’ll report to the company’s CEO, leading a team of Product Managers for the entire award-winning, product portfolio while personally managing several of your own categories. By recognizing market and consumer trends, you and your team will identify new opportunities and create product strategies to ensure growth and profitability for the growing omni-channel business, including D2C, 3rd party Marketplaces, and brick and mortar wholesale accounts.
With ownership of gross margin, sourcing, supply chain management, sales, and profitability, you will ensure the effective and efficient management of suppliers, contracts, and negotiations, meeting suppliers domestically and internationally. You will also partner with the company’s dedicated sourcing and PO management team based in Shanghai, who will work closely with you and your team to ensure success. Working across other cross-functional areas, you’ll partner most closely with teams in Marketing, Creative, PSQC/Quality, and Inventory Control.
This is a one-of-a-kind, highly entrepreneurial opportunity to significantly impact a successful, well-established company that fosters a start-up culture of creativity. You’ll nurture your passion for product development and thrive in a highly agile environment that values honesty, transparency and is free of the bureaucracy that often thwarts forward momentum.
ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
Duties and responsibilities of the position include but are not limited to the following:
Team and Company Leadership:
- Lead the Product Management team, providing daily coaching and long-term career development. Hire new Product Managers, as needed.
- Communicate the vision for the business and merchandising strategy within the company and with suppliers and customers.
Product Innovation and Strategy:
- Identify and create new categories focused on exciting and unique products that differentiate the company from others in the industry.
- Lead the sourcing and selection of products within designated categories that fit the brand merchandising strategy.
- Partner with Product Managers, conduct category reviews and provide insight into each category to improve overall product offerings.
- Work with the CEO to develop mid-and long-term strategies, delivering them through the Omnichannel model and ensuring sales, gross margin, and contribution objectives are met or exceeded.
Product Lifecycle Management:
- Lead global vendor management, including relationship-building, communication, collaboration strategies, favorable pricing, and win-win negotiations on pricing, quality, and deliverability.
- Ensure that prospective new products are sampled, tested, and evaluated to meet all applicable compliance standards.
- Assist with catalog design, layout, photography, and copywriting, ensuring the product vision and strategy carries through in marketing.
The requirements listed below represent the minimum knowledge, skill, and/or ability required to perform job function:
- Education: Bachelor’s degree required; MBA preferred.
- Experience: Minimum of 10 years related experience with a minimum of 5 years as a lead merchant in a direct selling environment, including e-commerce.
- Analytical Skills: Ability to use thinking and reasoning to solve a problem.
- Communication, oral: Ability to communicate effectively with others using the spoken word.
- Communication, written: Ability to communicate in writing clearly and concisely.
- Detail Oriented: Ability to pay attention to the minute details of a project or task.
- Negotiating: Proven track record of growing vendor relationships that proved financially successful for all parties
- Team Player: Ability to work within a team of performers, each skilled in her/her own specialty.
- Required Computer Skills: Excel, Word, Publisher, Outlook.
- Preferred Computer Skills: Access; understanding of POS; experience with forecasting and inventory management systems.
- Valid/current US Passport; able to travel internationally 3-5 times annually.
- Understanding of market conditions as it relates to merchandising.