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Home  > Insider profile
Tawney McCarty
Retail Manager

"I have so many options of where I want to go next."

As children, we're all asked the question "What do you want to be when you grow up?" How did you answer?

A retail fashion buyer.

How did you get your big breaks?

I answered an ad in the paper for Pier 1. My goal was to learn everything about what it's like to be a manager in a training program where you work with customers, associates; learn Profit & Loss (P&L); people management; visual merchandising. 12-18 months later you can become a full-fledged store manager. ?

What was the best advice you received when you were first starting out in your career?

The customer is always right.

What have you learned from your experience?

Buyers here are different from other stores, only 13 buyers for entire company, very specialized (since some product comes from 3rd world nations, you have to know the cultures, for example). It's not something that you can just walk into. You are chosen from stores, managers move into associate buying position; or they go to someone with buying experience.

What most excites you about your job right now?

The responsibility level I have. Store managers have total responsibility for the store; P&L; scheduling; hours; etc. Store managers are empowered. Working with customer is 95% of job. I like interacting with people so I love that aspect.

On a scale of 1-10, how relevant was your academic major to your career? (1=not at all, 10=absolutely essential)

10 Absolutely Essential

What would you like to have achieved by the last day of your career?

I planned on being a buyer, but I've seen people go from stores to corporate office, not always into buying. Some people go into human resources, training, visual merchandising, planning and allocation, etc. Some stay in stores or pursue regional management. I have so many options of where I want to go next. I'm not sure what I want yet.

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