Posts Tagged ‘Fashion Careers’

Fashion Jobs – Career Advice with Christie Lohr – The Internship

Friday, September 19th, 2014

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With so much competition nowadays in virtually every industry and career field, getting a job right out of school with no real work experience to cite on your resume has become rather difficult. This is especially true for the fashion industry as many positions call for practical and applicable skills that could only have been acquired from performing tasks while on the job. For example, think PR – although having a degree in it is one thing, textbooks and classes alone are not enough to prepare you for the unpredictable nature of the real job. Only past work experience can. That is where the internship comes in. While individuals generally recognize the merit of an internship, sometimes the idea of being a temporary/contract employee, and not being well compensated for the work performed may discourage many from doing the best that they can during the duration of their internship. This, according to Christie, is one of the biggest career faux pas you can make, and she’s here to tell you why.

 

Christie: I have always been a fan of internships. Not only can you learn and develop so many useful skills during an internship that you will ultimately take with you throughout your professional career, it is also a great opportunity to build lasting connections. Although most internships (especially in the fashion industry) may not offer the best compensation in comparison to the amount of time that you’ll likely be putting into it, that doesn’t make the experience any less valuable than a permanent position with the company. I always say: treat your internship like it’s any other job where you would want to make the best impression possible. If anything, you want to prove yourself even more in an internship scenario because you’re not a permanent employee for the company yet. An internship can either land you a future job, or a recommendation that will lead to your future job, or it can leave you with a bad professional reputation instead.

 

Although a company may not be in a position to hire you yet, if you demonstrate your abilities, tenacity and overall strong work ethic during your internship, you’ll definitely be the first person they think of when an actual job opening comes along. After all, you’ll save them the time and money of advertising for the posting and interviewing for it too. The relationships you establish through your internship may very well land you a job, even if it’s just through a glowing recommendation from your employer. However, the opposite of this is also very true, in the sense that if you prove to be nothing but lazy and unmotivated during your internship, not only will you likely never hear from the company again, but your employer probably won’t have many positive things to say about you afterwards either. Remember, every job or internship you take on will leave some sort of mark on your professional track record. It’s up to you whether you want to make it a good one or not.

 

Photo by Michelle Morton

 

Written by Anna Zhao

Are you an employer? Post your fashion job here.

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Fashion Jobs – White For Fall

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

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The white on white trend has been popular for the summer seasons, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to transition it into your fall wardrobe. Fashion is all about breaking rules, so why not start by breaking the ultimate rule: “Don’t wear white after labour day”. In order to keep your outfit from looking too summery, layer pieces like fur coats with chunky knit sweaters. Instead of looking like you’ve just come from the beach you’ll be rocking a minimalistic and modern fall aesthetic.

 

1. Boohoo Abby High Rise Heavy Ripped Jeans- www.boohoo.com

2.  H&M top with stand up collar –available in store at H&M

3. Classic White Slip on Vans – www.vans.com

4. Mango Striped Jacket- shop.mango.com

5. Michael Kors Jet Set Traveler Bag – track.webgains.com

6. Asymmetrical Skirt- www.blackfive.com

 

 

Style Inspiration: Betty Adewold for Tomboy Style Blog tomboybklyn.tumblr.com

 

By: Cassidy

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Fashion Jobs – The Working Girl’s Guide to Fall

Monday, September 15th, 2014

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The weather is definitely changing and it’s starting to get cold out there. If you’re anything like me, cold weather means wanting to hibernate and wrap up in a Snuggie while drinking hot chocolate all day. Unfortunately, life doesn’t stop when the temperature drops and work beckons us to leave our Snuggies at home and venture outside. Here are some ideas to help you embrace the fall season at the office while still staying warm. 1

Style Inspiration: Leigh Lezark image courtesy of le-21eme

Club Monaco Sonica Cashmere Sweater, $269

Top Shop Jersey Pleated Sporty Midi Skirt, $45

Aldo Ocaria, $70

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Style Inspiration: Karlie Kloss image courtesy of Glamour

Gap Tailored Crop Pants, $64.95

Nasty Gal Rain Check Trench, $151.64

Loeffler Randall Snakeskin Envelope Flap Lock Clutch, $404.94 available at Nordstrom

 

By: Nikita Due

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Fashion Jobs – How To Start Your Own Business

Thursday, September 11th, 2014

Style Nine to Five - Fashion Jobs

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As a business owner, one of the things that Christie gets asked about the most is “how did you get started?” While addressing this topic in full would probably require more than just one career chat, Christie’s here to dish out on the most important takeaways from her Style Nine to Five journey.

 

Christie: It’s difficult to answer a question such as “how do I start my own business?” Depending on where your passions, experience, and skillsets lie, there may be several paths to take. Whenever I am asked the question, I simply respond with advice that applied to my own personal journey. After all, what worked for me may not work for everyone, but I do believe that there are a few key points that can be applicable to any aspiring business owner.

 

The first and arguably the most important piece of advice that I will give is to find an opportunity in the market and fill it. Now this is easier said than done, as it is the fundamental basis for which every successfully business is built on. Your solution to the problem has to be a good one, and one that a lot of people can get on board with. Sure that may sound daunting, especially if you don’t peg yourself as someone who can think outside of the box. What I will say to that is, let your past experiences and knowledge guide you towards an opportunity. I didn’t just pull the idea for Style Nine to Five out of thin air. I got the idea for it after working as a retail recruiter in the fashion industry and being utterly frustrated with what was available at the time to help me do my job. From that frustration, I thought to myself, I couldn’t be the only one that was experiencing the problem of lack of qualified applicants for the job openings that I was recruiting for. After all, the fashion industry is huge, and there clearly wasn’t a job portal that was tailored for what everyone in the industry needed. Armed with that knowledge, I knew that I could be the one to solve that problem once and for all. And from that, Style Nine to Five was born, and later, its sister site, Beauty Nine to Five.

 

I think the moral of my story is that looking to solve a problem or to create the next best thing regarding a topic/area/industry which you know absolutely nothing about, will likely be a lot less feasible than trying to address an existing problem in an area that you are familiar and passionate about. If you are knowledgeable in an area already, then you’ve done half the work of figuring out how everything works, what’s lacking, and most importantly, what COULD work in tackling the shortcomings that you’ve identified. You’re much more likely to succeed with your idea if you’ve already paid your dues, and have an applicable and relevant body of knowledge to draw from.

 

Another thing I will say is, don’t start your own business for the sole purpose of making money. Of course we all want to make money, but if you begin your journey thinking that the money will just come pouring in, then you’re sorely mistaken. Be prepared to be broke for a while. Before jumping into anything, make sure you have at least 6 months to a year’s worth of savings to live on, as you probably won’t start to see positive cash flows for at least a year.

 

Don’t be afraid of applying for a business loan. Yes, all loans must be returned with interest, but you will need cash flow in order to grow. It’s everyone’s hope that you will have enough saved up or borrowed from family to never have to take out a penny from the bank, but not everyone will be in as fortunate a situation. I didn’t take a loan out until 4 years into running my business when I decided to expand into New York. Although it’s important to not be reckless with your spending, DON’T be afraid to spend money to make money. Running a business can be rather expensive, so make sure you’re prepared for that before sending in any resignations.

 

The final piece of advice I will give is to be prepared for a lot of hard work. While you may be able to start your business while still doing your day job, there will come a time when you will have to dive in head first. In order to grow your idea into a full-fledged business, your business has to become your life. I work on Style Nine to Five from the time I wake up to the time I go to sleep, with mental breaks, gym classes, a few events, and the odd nap in between.

 

Don’t be afraid of failure and don’t expect it to happen overnight. For many types of businesses, you will need time to build up your credibility; I know that was the case for Style Nine to Five. It’s those that give up within the first year of running their business that ultimately don’t make it. Just when you feel like giving up, don’t. Remember, on the other side of that hardship, is where you’re supposed to be.

 

Photo by Laura McIntosh

 

Written by: Anna Zhao

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Office Style: The Pencil Skirt – #SNTFxRobson

Wednesday, August 20th, 2014

Style Nine to Five - Fashion Jobs

Fall is the time of year for new beginnings. Whether that means going back to school, seeking out your first professional job post-graduation, or transitioning into a new career path altogether, it is definitely the season of change for many. In Style Nine to Five’s new collaboration with Robson Street, I’ll be sharing weekly work-appropriate outfits that certainly don’t lack in the style department. DSC_0196-ddEdit

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September marks a new beginning, and with fashion week looming, there’s inspiration all around. The way you dress is the perfect way to make a statement. When it comes to your career, you don’t want to go overboard with the trends, even if you are working in fashion. While in-the-moment pieces can definitely be incorporated into your work look, I still rely on the basics to tone down any loud items.

 

This week is all about the pencil skirt. The silhouette of a high-waisted pencil skirt is flattering, accentuating the smallest part of your body- the waist. Not only does the length make it work appropriate, there are also many styles and fabrications to choose from. Since we’re heading into fall, I chose a white faux leather pencil skirt. While the basic piece is timeless, the white is a fresh take on leather.  Yes, you CAN wear white after Labour Day. In fact, rocking white during fall is a great way to make a statement.

 

I paired the pencil skirt with a black sweater, sticking to a theme of black and white (colour blocking). I love how the sweater has a built in leather collar, that ties back to the leather of the skirt. When choosing heels for work, I always recommend a lower heel for maximum comfort. These pointed, strappy pumps fit the bill, and the red was a subtle way to work in a pop of colour into my look. I kept my accessories to a minimum, opting for a pair of classic studs as the rest of the pieces already had quite a bit of attitude.

 

The important thing to note is that my finished look featured pieces from various price points. I’m a huge fan of mixing higher and lower price point items. It’s all about mixing the right pieces together to look like and feel like a million bucks.

 

Outfit details: sweater from Club Monaco ($159.50), skirt from Zara ($59.90), heels from Aldo ($90), bracelet ($5.80) and earrings ($4.80) from Forever 21

 

 

Photos taken by Laura McIntosh

 

Photos edited by Bria Lear of Digital Darlings Creative - Digital Darlings Creative demystifies Photoshop through fiercely fun weekend workshops and customized coaching - whether boosting your business or beautifying your blog, our classes deliver skills and confidence using the top design program you NEED to know. (Tech wiz status, not required.)

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Fashion Jobs – Looking Forward to Fall – Cool Cardis

Sunday, August 17th, 2014

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One of my favourite fashion changes I look forward to for fall is the ease of adding a cardigan to just about any outfit. With so many different cuts, colours, and lengths to try, it’s hard not to stock up and wear a different cardi every day. For work, go for a cropped style that is easy to layer over dresses, and has a polished look to them. For the weekend, try long and textured styles paired with skinny jeans and you’re good to go.

 

 

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Work:

 

1. Nic + Zoe Double Trim Cardigan, $108 USD

2. Lanvin Intarsia-Knit Beaded Cardigan, $980, available at MATCHESFASHION.COM

3.H&M Fine-Knit Cardigan, $24.95

4. Diane von Furstenberg Intarsia Wool Wrap Cardigan, $330 USD, available at Net-a-Porter

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Weekend:
5. Tibi Mohair Oversize Cardigan, $395

6. J.Crew Merino Wool V-Neck Cardigan, $91.50 USD

7. Joe Fresh Merino Collared Cardigan, $49

8. Hanna Andersson Pointelle Sleeve Cardigan, $119

 

By: Liz Doré, Toronto

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Career Advice with Christie Lohr – Cover Letters

Friday, August 15th, 2014

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Job hunting is a tedious process that can be downright frustrating at times. In a world where time is money, I’m sure that many of us have been tempted to hit the “apply” button without attaching an individualized cover letter to go with our resume/CV, especially if it is not a listed application requirement. I mean, our work experience and qualifications is what employers actually look at right? Well, Christie would beg to differ. Having worked in recruitment herself, and still currently pre-screening applicant profiles for Style Nine to Five, Christie’s definitely the authority in what recruiters look for in job applications.

 

Christie: “One of the biggest mistakes that a job applicant can make is NOT writing up an individualized cover letter to accompany their resume/CV. Even if the application details do not specify for a cover letter attachment, trust me, recruiters definitely look for them. From my personal recruitment experience, receiving hundreds of applications to a single position is not uncommon. Imagine, within those 100 applications, there will be at least one individual who appears to be more qualified than you. Based on resumes alone, many candidates would simply be disregarded or even forgotten due to the amount of duplicity that occurs in qualifications. A cover letter is then, the best way to stand out amongst the sea of candidates. It’s your way to make an impression on the recruiter and to communicate skills that are not present on your resume. Such skills include knowledge of the company and position, writing ability, and even a bit of your personality. Employers DO appreciate the time that a candidate takes to actually write up a personalized cover letter. How else are they to distinguish amongst the candidates who truly want to work for their company versus those that mass apply to any job opening? Personally, I would only consider candidates who include a cover letter, simply because it shows me that they care enough about the application to personalize it.  A rule of thumb that I would suggest job seekers keep in mind when writing cover letters is to mention the name of the company three times throughout the cover letter: in the intro, the body, and the conclusion. This shows the recruiter your interest in the company in a subtle, but noticeable manner. As a recruiter, we want to know why you want to work for us and not anyone else!”

 

For more fashion career advice, check out our previous Career Chats with Christie Lohr and search #SNTFCareerChat on Twitter.

By: Anna Zhao

Photo by: Laura McIntosh

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Fashion Jobs – Career Chats with Christie Lohr: Finding Your Calling

Thursday, August 7th, 2014

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When we were younger, we all had our own aspirations as to what we wanted to become. Perhaps a doctor, a director, an astronaut, or even a princess; yes life was simple back then. As our childhood slowly transitioned into adulthood, we became increasingly unsure of what we wanted to do with our lives and what careers to pursue. With exposure to various external influences, suddenly the professional options available to us became endless. As soon as you factor schooling, training, work experience, and above all, time and money into the picture, it’s enough to give anyone a headache. How exactly are we supposed to go about discovering our callings in life? Not all of us are fortunate enough to know from the get go what we want to pursue. Luckily, Christie’s here to give us her take on how to tackle the daunting task of setting our careers on the right track.

 

Anna: I know we’ve already established that you knew from a young age that fashion was the industry for you. From there on out, how did you narrow down exactly what you wanted to do within it?

Christie: I knew I had to start somewhere, so I began my fashion career as a part time sales associate. The position exposed me to various aspects of fashion retail and also allowed me to develop my leadership skills. Because I was always motivated to go above and beyond what was expected from me, I was eventually promoted to a store manager position. Throughout my retail experience, I realized that I really enjoyed the human aspect of the job: working with a team, impacting individuals, meeting new people, and always thinking of creative ways to better my store’s results. When I transitioned into a buying position, I dealt with a lot more paperwork and realized that I missed the same human aspect that I previously mentioned. This led me to realize that perhaps human resources within the fashion industry was a good path for me.

Anna: What advice would you give to individuals that don’t have a clue what industry they want to be a part of, let alone the exact job?

Christie: I’m a firm believer that there is always something that we each naturally gravitate towards. For me, that was fashion, but it could be anything. Where our interests lie is definitely the first and best indication of what industry we should explore. With regards to the exact job description, take a moment to consider what you’re naturally good at. For me, it was my leadership and take-charge attitude that aided me throughout my life, but for you, that could be writing, merchandising, or artistic abilities. Take time to become an expert in what you do and seek out positions that capitalize on those assets.

Anna: After you’ve narrowed down the industry, where do you go from there?

Christie: I can’t stress the importance of trying your hand out at different things enough. Only through doing different things can you discover what you truly like and don’t like. It’s easy to assume what a certain job may entail, but actually experiencing the job is an entirely different beast. For example, I thought that I would really enjoy the position of a buyer. However, once I actually tried my hand out at buying and saw what tasks needed to be performed, I realized that buying was not for me. Sometimes, it takes recognizing what you don’t enjoy to realize what you do!

Anna: What do you do if you discover something in your current job/career that you really don’t find enjoyment in it? Do you have any advice for someone looking to start over doing something different, but may have certain reservations towards doing so?

Christie: First off, before anyone decides to exit from an existing job or career, I think it’s important to ask yourself, “did I do all that I could to make the most out of my position?” I touched on this subject in a past Career Chat (link here), but I strongly believe that trying to go above and beyond your role, and creating opportunities to do different tasks outside of what’s expected of you is a great way to regain a sense of satisfaction in what you do. Beyond that, if you know it’s time for a change in career, but find it difficult to make a decision, boy can I tell you that I’ve been there! The bills always need to be paid, so oftentimes, taking the leap and quitting your job really isn’t the most feasible option. However, there are many ways to get started in exploring your secondary interests while you remain in your current position. For me, that meant starting my own blog so I could begin building up my own personal brand, as I knew that was highly important for the next stage in my career. It may be hard to find the time to do what we want to do part-time, outside of work, but it’s a great way to work towards our dream job. It’s all about making a commitment to do both if leaving your current job is temporarily out of the question!

Photo by: Laura McIntosh

By: Anna Zhao

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Fashion Jobs – Career Chats With Christie Lohr: Asking For What You Want

Thursday, July 31st, 2014

Style Nine to Five - Fashion Jobs

 

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For many individuals that are just starting out in their careers, one of the biggest mental hurdles to overcome is not being afraid to express opinions openly and transparently in the face of management and professional networks. To clarify, the opinions which I speak of are purely professional in nature and relate directly to career development. Speaking from personal experience, I know that it’s so easy to fall into the trap of believing that if we just work hard enough in our given roles, we will eventually be discovered and then whisked off for bigger and better things. What we often forget is that when it comes to career growth and development, it’s up to ourselves to seek out opportunities that reflect our fields of interest. Sometimes that means that we have to ask for what we want; there really isn’t anyone else to do it for us. Yes, that seems like a daunting task initially, but perhaps Christie can shed some more light on this topic and in turn, give us all a well needed confidence boost to just go for it.

Christie Lohr: “I’ve always recognized myself as a bit of an introvert and some of my shyness has stayed with me throughout my career. With that said, that has never been an obstacle that has obstructed me from asking for what I want. I think too many people have the misconception in their heads that “asking for what you want” is the equivalent of demanding something: a raise, a promotion, or otherwise, hence the reservations that come up in regards to doing so. For me, I’ve never approached the task of asking for more opportunities as a demand, rather, I see it as a chance to openly express my personal interests regarding various ventures. If you’ve already proven yourself as a reliable worker in any present roles, then chances are management or contacts also recognize the same ability in you. However, here is where a lack of communication occurs that often prevent people from moving forward in their careers. Yes, you may be recognized as being great in what you currently do, but if you possess aspirations for other things that you don’t vocalize, then who would know to consider you for any aligning opportunities?

 

When I did fashion segments on Breakfast Television as a representative for Le Chateau (with my appearances coordinated by Le Chateau’s PR), I had the idea to represent myself and showcase other brands by doing style segments as simply Christie Lohr, and not Christie Lohr of Le Chateau. I knew that I already had an established relationship with Breakfast Television so I went ahead and expressed my interest in being an all-around fashion expert. This wasn’t merely for me. I knew that showcasing other brands would definitely increase the range of topics that could be discussed on their style segment, therefore appealing to a wider audience. Breakfast Television recognized that too as they agreed it would be a great idea and thus, I became their fashion expert.

 

If you see an opportunity within your current company or within a personal connection’s company, then express your interest! Start by presenting a reason as to why you think that you could be a great fit for the role and any ideas that you would execute if you did adopt the role. Most people in management positions are quite receptive to ideas promoting the growth of their respective companies. You’d be surprised at how many people would be willing to give your ideas a shot if you simply put them forward. Think of being open and transparent regarding what you want as a chance to showcase your skills and aptitudes. Are you into fashion merchandising while you’re in a sales associate role? Then speak openly of your interest and approach your management with your personal inspiration/style boards! Perhaps you know that you could definitely fulfill a position that you were initially rejected for. Try to get in direct contact with recruitment to ask for feedback. The worst someone can say is no, and that really isn’t so bad (it’s not personal, and remember that!).

 

I requested an interview with Fashion Canada even after 3 internship rejections because I knew in my heart that I could fulfill the position well. They agreed to the interview request and I got the internship in the end. Would the results have been the same if I had just left it off after the rejections? Certainly not.”

 

I think what Christie discussed is a great way of approaching the task of “asking for what you want.” She’s right, most of us think of “asking” as “demanding,” and that’s definitely not the way to go. If we simply aimed to express our ideas and interests more openly in the face of our professional networks, then perhaps opportunity inquiries would become wholly less daunting of a task.

 

Have you ever had a missed opportunity because you were afraid to express your interest for fear of rejection? Make it a personal resolution to start asking for what you want by Christie’s terms to truly fast track our career development!

 

Be sure to tune in on Wednesday from 5-6pm PST for our live Twitter #SNTFCareerChat. This is the perfect time to tweet out any of your personal career questions for Christie to answer!

 

By: Anna Zhao

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Career Chats With Christie Lohr: What Does “Above & Beyond” Really Mean?

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

Style Nine to Five - Fashion jobs NYC

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What does it truly take to succeed in your career, no matter the industry that you are a part of? For many of us, we’re not too certain where we will wind up unless we first experience various trials and tribulations. But for Christie Lohr, the founder of fashion job website Style Nine to Five, a career in the fashion industry was an established goal from the tender age of 10. In Style Nine to Five’s latest blog feature, Christie Lohr will be dishing out on the best in career advice that can be applied to any industry, fashion or otherwise. Expect discussions involving the true spirit of entrepreneurialism, dressing for success, asking for what you want in order to get what you want, and above all, persevering through any obstacle that obstructs your path. Let’s see what’s in store for our opening article to kick off this weekly feature.

 

Christie Lohr: ”One piece of advice that I’ve given time and time again in interviews, and when asked by any individual as to how to succeed in the fashion industry, is to go above and beyond what is asked of you on the job. Sure, this may be something that everyone is used to hearing over and over again from any professional, but I don’t think many people truly understand the underlying meaning of my statement. For example, most individuals start working in retail as a means to an end, never thinking that it’ll be the start of their career. What I think people often forget is the fact that many corporate hires from major fashion retailers come from within the company. If you prove yourself from an entry level position as a sales associate, you would be surprised at how many doors open for you. I remember phoning head office as a 17 year old, part time sales associate, to ask about what it takes to get a job in fashion marketing. From then on out, I would create inspiration boards for the sales team during my breaks, just because I wanted to, not because it was required of me from the job. I knew that I had to make the most of what I wanted from the job, and this certainly wasn’t an attitude that I abandoned even as I climbed through the retail ranks to Store Manager and Assistant Menswear Buyer for Le Chateau. As a Store Manager, I would constantly be thinking of new ways to hit and exceed the weekly store goals. Oftentimes, the best results were from the most unconventional of ideas. From getting a popular local DJ to come into the store on a rainy Saturday, to dressing up the entire sales team in Le Chateau’s own dresses to promote the product, I enjoyed my role the most when I kept my mind busy. I think many of us spend our time simply going through the paces on the job, but it really is up to ourselves to create opportunities. When I worked as an Assistant Menswear Buyer for Le Chateau, I would go to other stores on my days off to study the latest trends, and often would buy items that I thought Le Chateau should carry to show to the higher ups. I didn’t let my job title as Assistant Buyer restrict me from doing what I felt needed to be done.”

 

I think many of us that are just starting out in our professional careers can definitely relate to what Christie has just discussed. Personally, I know that I’ve fallen into the trap of thinking of some job opportunities are merely temporary, and disregarding them as a means to developing my career in the given industry. To conclude this week’s careers feature, I’d like to end off with a great quote from Christie:

“Your personal career growth is up to you and not your management. Create the opportunity for yourself by going above and beyond. Always work towards the position you want, not simply doing enough to get by in the position you have.”

 

Be sure to tune in on Tuesday from 12-1pm PST for our live Twitter #SNTFCareerChat. This is the perfect time to tweet out any of your personal career questions for Christie to answer!

 

Written by: Anna Zhao

 

Are you an employer? Post your fashion job here.

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Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram for the latest fashion jobs, career advice and fashion trends!