Monday, July 29, 2013

World of Valentino

We had a really exciting event take place on the designer floor last week! It was the World of Valentino Trunk Show and it was so amazing. Every Valentino sample we had for pre- fall was literally like a work of art. The event was so much fun and I'm glad I was still here to be able to attend.

About a week before the event our team had started calling our customers to let them know about the event, and to set up appointments with them. We had a really good turn out, and even people who hadn't been called were coming to the third floor to see what was going on. There was a dj playing music and the event was catered with drinks and hors d'oeuvres for our customers as well. A rep from Valentino was there to help any customers who wanted to know more or to be personally styled. There were pre-fall samples in Valentino shoes, clothes, and handbags. There was also models walking around during the whole event. Everything was so beautiful! 

The trunk show was a success! Not only did we meet our goal for that day, but we also exceeded it, which is always exciting! I know the customers really enjoyed their time just by how well they responded to the event. It isn't everyday that you get to attend something so neat.  I mean I know I was super excited to be there! It was a really great experience, and something I could never get tired of! Valentino honestly designs such beautiful and creative pieces that you could just look at all day! I was definitely in awe by everything. 

(Pictures from the event)

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Lunch with Helen

These past couple of weeks have been so busy for the interns. It was many of ours first experience with anniversary. We've also had classes, homework, reviews, meetings, and still made time for sells. I have to admit I'm pretty exhausted with all that has been going on! Luckily we have a pretty great store manager, (Helen), who provided us with some downtime and got us a really great lunch.

It was a really good time to have all the interns together. Also, it was nice that Helen was there along with a few others from management. It feels great to be appreciated by everyone as interns, and to be thanked for all of our hard work! 

We had an amazing lunch from Panera Bread and we also had more cake! They made a slide show of all of us at work, or hanging with each other after hours, and also us as a group. We also played a game call "Who am I", and it was so fun to see how well we've all gotten to know each other during our time at Nordstrom. All the interns received funny little awards that had been voted on by our peers, and I won the best "selfie" award (haha). It was a really good time for all of us to just take a breather and realize that it's almost over! In the next three days I will be giving my presentation, graduating, and having my last one-on-one meeting with Helen! Wednesday is my last day, and I have to say I'm going to miss coming to Nordstrom every day! 

(My new moto "A selfie a day keeps the doctor away"!)  :) 

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Professional Development

I can officially say that I have completed the Nordstrom internship classes! Our last class was on professional development and it was a really good class to end with and to learn from. 

One of the main things we talked about was learning agility. Learning agility is basically the ability to learn new concepts and skills as your role or environment changes. As you continue to grow with Nordstrom it is very important that you do have this skill because it is an ever evolving company. You have to be able to except new ideas and changes, as well as, being able to adapt to them.

Another thing we talked about is transitioning into management. I'm really glad this is something we went over because it can be a big step from just being on the sells floor. As an assistant manager you still have to maintain your SPH while helping your team and many other things. It could be challenging for some, so in class we went over ways to better adapt to those changes.

I was kinda relieved yet upset at the en of this class just because that means were pretty much finished, except these last couple days at work. We still have the project presentation coming up and our graduation day! I'm so excited! :) 

(We're almost there) 

Friday, July 26, 2013

60 Day Evaluation

As my final days are coming to a close, I am starting to realize how far I've come since almost two months ago. I was recently given my 60 day review and I find it so crazy that it has went be so fast.  It honestly feels like yesterday was my first day. I'm sad that it'll be ending next Wednesday.

My 60 day evaluation went really well. It's pretty much just a review of how I've done and how far I've come. It lets me know strengths and weakness and where my manager sees me going after the internship. I was really eager to see what my manager had to say about my progress, and I am proud of how well I have done.

My department manager fills out a questionnaire for each team member that asks questions about being a team player, providing customer service, going above and beyond for the customer. After the questionnaire there is room to leave comments. She really let me know how well I've done and where I could still use some improvements. I think it is so important to get that type of feedback so you can continue to grow. I think I have come pretty far since day one and I'm definitely proud of myself! 

Sunday, July 21, 2013

10 Days Left

I honestly can't believe that there are only ten days left in my internship. Time has went by so fast, it seems like just yesterday was my first day in training. I've come a long way since then, and I can definitely see my self staying with this company for a long time.

There are so many things happening in the next ten days that I am pretty excited about. Not only is the Anniversary Sale still going on, but it is also time for 60 day reviews and many other things. In the next ten days my intern project is due,  one more class to attend, lunch and interview with the store manager, and my graduation from the intern program.

It's a pretty bittersweet feeling, because I'm excited that I've almost completed the intern program, but I'm also sad that it'll be over. I have learned so much and improved so much. I feel more comfortable on the sales floor while interacting with customers and I've made some good connections as well!

The other day  I was talking with the manager of the designer floor and he asked me if he was to offer me an assistant manager position right after I graduate would I take it, and he wanted my honest answer. I told him that from what I've learned you really need to know how to do everything and gain as much experience as you can before teaching someone else, and that two months isn't enough time to really excel in every possible aspect of being an assistant manager. I believe it would be smarter to do sales a bit longer to better myself, and then I would be able to take on that task. He agreed with me and was glad that I had realized how much better it is to gain more experience before jumping into something you may not be ready for. With that being said, hopefully my future at Nordstrom is a bright one with lots of opportunity! 

(A lot of amazing boots for the anniversary sale!!!)

Saturday, July 20, 2013

First Day of Public Access

When starting this internship I had never really shopped at Nordstrom before. I had been in the store and I knew about the company, but there wasn't one close enough for me to shop at! Now that I've interned here it would be really hard for me to shop at any other department store! One reason being the anniversary sale. I mean seriously, its such an amazing sale for customers. They are getting new items for fall before they hit the floor anywhere else and they are also discounted. Doesn't get much better than that.

Having said that, yesterday was the first day that the sale opened to the public and it was crazy! We opened the store early and all the customers were so excited to get their hands on all the new merchandise. Most of them are already prepared; they've gotten the catalog, and they come in and get everything the need then their out. Others love to be shown all the new merchandise and like to try it on. Needless to say, it was a very busy day!

Today has been just as busy! We're actually starting to sell out of certain things in the company! That's how fast everything is going! Working anniversary has been fun so far, and ill be sad when my internship is up, but it's been such an amazing experience! :) 

(Different shades of purple HOT HOT HOT for this fall!!!!)

Thursday, July 18, 2013

People Development

Our third class that we had was mostly about people development. We learned things about; recruitment, business reviews,  how to coach and motivate your team, and also how told hold employees accountable for compliance issues and other things of that nature. It was a very informative class, and I learned a few things that I hadn't even thought about before.

One of the most important things we discussed was teaching vs. coaching. Teaching would be considered the sharing of knowledge, whereas, coaching is guiding, developing, and enhancing their skills. It is very important to understand the difference when becoming a manager because you can't expect your team to know something they haven't been taught. You also have to be willing to coach them along the way .

Another big thing that I hadn't really thought about before was how mangers have to deal with ethical situations. During class we did an exercise where one person was the manager and one person has doing something wrong and we had to role play how we would approach and solve the problem. I never realized how awkward it could be in some situations, and I'm glad we went over different ways to handle those types of issues.

Overall, this class really opened my eyes to how to become a better manager for the future. It not only taught me what to look for when hiring someone, but also, how to teach and coach my team to drive results.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

The Advantage of Appointments

During this past week I have learned how important making appointments with your customers really are. Setting up appointments can make a huge difference at the end of the day. They are a win-win situation, because not only are you connecting with your customer on a more personal level, you are also selling more and making more.

I have only had one appointment during early access, but that is mainly because I haven't been there long enough to build up clientele. I have learned a lot about appointments though by watching some of our top sellers with their appointments.  It really helps drive their business because they shop the entire store with their customer. 

By setting up appointments it makes it easier to suggest more to your customer, as well as, cross sell through the entire store. Usually your customer already knows you and trusts you to help them pick out things for themselves and their family. Some of the top sellers on our team have been there for so long that their customers really depend on them to help them out. Basically, setting up appointments pretty much guarantees that you will sell more, therefore, you will be making more, driving results, and picking up volume! 

Thursday, July 11, 2013

First Day of Early Access

Early access for Anniversary Sale is finally here, and oh my goodness yesterday was crazy. I was not expecting it to be so many people so soon, but I was wrong! It was actually a really fun day and busy, busy, busy!

My day started out with my very first appointment. I was really excited, because during and appointment you really get a one-on-one connection with you customer. She was really interested in the boots we had for anniversary, so before she came I had a selection set up for her. It was a good time and she really enjoyed trying on the boots an was glad I could help her decide on which ones to get. 

After my appointment it was still busy all day. It was fun too see how many people get so excited about the sale! I mean I seriously heard everyone say they had been counting down the days! It's always really good to see customers excited about something like that, and also that you can be there to help them! It has already been so crazy just for early access, I can't even imagine what it's going to be like once the sale is open to the public! Can't wait :) ! 

Sunday, July 7, 2013

It's Almost Over!

Since I am halfway through the internship I figured I could recap some of my experiences and how much I've learned so far. It has honestly been a great experience so far and the best part is still yet to come, anniversary sale!! :) This internship has really opened me up to different opportunities that I never would have thought of before.

Working for Nordstrom is truly an amazing experience. The employees are so appreciated by everyone else and everyone works as a team to provide the best possible service to the customer. I've never really seen customer service so "crazy" I guess I could say. I mean honestly, Nordstrom customers are valued so much that there isn't even a return policy, which in return is our number one selling tool. Nordstrom wants to gain the respect of every customer who walks through the door and its been great to be able to experience that, because no where else really provides that one on one relationship. 

Another thing that has been a real eye opener for me is working on commission. Being in a more competitive atmosphere has taught me a lot. I know now you have to treat every customer like its your last, because in reality it could be. You have to build your own business and keep you customer at the top of your priorities, as well as, build and maintain a relationship with them. Interning as a possible assistant manager has shown me both sides. I have learned a lot about how to become a team leader while still working on the sales floor.

I am really glad that I was able to get this internship. It has opened new doors for me within the company. I will be sad to leave during the semester, but hopefully I will be going back the start of next year. Next week starts anniversary sale and I'm super excited to be a part of it. I'm very proud of where I am now as to where I was before, and I have grown a lot and can't wait to learn some more! 

Also, it is time to get next season's must have items right now! 

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Social Media is a MUST!

Social media is such a huge part of today's world. I don't know one person who doesn't check either Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, or Twitter at least one to three times a day. Because it is so big in today's world, it should be incorporated in every company. Nordstrom has been working hard to stay on top of everything with social media, as well as, all the latest technologies.

I believe that if you aren't utilizing social medias to your best interest then you are losing that connection with your customer. I know from my own experience I love to see what new trends are out, who's styling them how, and where I can get them. What better way to show your customer that than by updating your social medias often and also making them interactive.

Nordstrom does pretty well updating their social medias and definitely stays on top of things with new technologies. There are a few areas that could be improved though. I know one thing that works in my department is sending out emails to our customer about trends that week and what are the must have items. My department manager and I try to take pictures everyday to send out to customers getting them excited for what's coming up and also a few different ways to style that item. It really does make a difference when you keep social medias updated and make them fun and entertaining for your customer.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Connecting with the YC customer

I can't believe there is only a month left in my internship! It has gone by way too fast. On that note, today we were given our project for the end of our internship. The main point of the project is for us to create a presentation of ideas on how to connect better with the YC customer, a younger customer. Nordstrom is really trying to reach out and gain more attention from this type of customer, and as interns we get to brainstorm ideas and put together presentations for our store manager.

Today was the first day we got to meet in our groups to discuss ideas we may have . Our presentations have to amazing and interactive because it is a contest between all the interns. Whoever wins at our store will be judged regionally and whoever wins that will be judged corporately, so it is a really good time to shine and be recognized in the intern program.

We have some pretty good ideas so far. My group is going to try and focus on three main parts that we think could really make a difference in connecting with that YC customer. One thing we are going to be focusing on is sensory merchandising. The environment needs to be interactive and entertaining drawing them in and making them want to stay and shop. We also think that there needs to be an increase in the use of social media and interactive social media, because that is one thing that is probably lacking the most to gain the knowledge from the YC customer. One last point that we are going to touch on is reaching out to high schools and colleges and hosting events for them to attend. I really think these things could help improve the relationship with the YC customer and I can't wait until our project comes together more.