Have you ever wondered what your friends actually do for work? We’re not talking about the description in their LinkedIn bio, but what they actually do in their 9-5. As part of our mission to bring you more girl boss content, we’re investigating job titles to get the low-down on exactly what they really entail. Curious to know what an account executive even means? Wondering what a VP in finance does in the afternoon? We’re creating more transparency around different jobs, and the salaries and duties that come with them, to help you figure out what you’re interested in. Next in our series, a visual merchandiser living in NYC.
Age: 29
City: New York, NY
Industry: Fashion
Job Title: Senior Manager, Global Visual Merchandising
Years of experience: 7
Salary: 100k+ depending on yearly bonus
What does your job title mean? What does your job entail?
I specifically oversee all visual merchandising of women’s ready-to-wear, footwear, lifestyle categories, and our licensed categories in our retail stores. I am responsible for a team that sets direction for the product placement in over 900 stores globally. My team and I come up with new ways to present the product or draw customers to different parts of the store. In addition to showing product placement, I also provide styling for mannequins, windows, etc. in our guidelines.
Our goal is to make every store tell the same message each month, despite different markets with different customer needs and slightly different buys. We start planning each floor set around 8 months in advance and work with the design, merchandising, buying, production, and marketing teams to align on the key messages for the month and how that message will be told across product, marketing, and in-store presentation.
Beyond the core of creating guidelines, my job also entails setting up showrooms for market/buying appointments or PR press days, traveling internationally for store openings and/or staff trainings, helping out at floor sets in-store, and developing new props and fixtures for our stores.
When do you wakeup?
My sleep schedule is very irregular, partly due to my job, and when I get up varies a lot. Most days I’m up around 6 or 7 and in the office by 8 or 8:30. I’m not a morning person, but I do like to give myself time to wake up and read the news in bed before I actually get up and start getting ready.
Some days I help out our Visual Merchandising field team with floor sets in the city. On those days I need to be at a store at 6 or 7 am, so on those days I’m up as early as 4:30. My days don’t have a standard schedule in terms of time or in terms of what I’m working on, which keeps the job interesting but also can be a pain as it’s hard to stick to a routine.
At 9am I am…
I like to get into the office early because it makes my commute easier and gives me time to process the day before everyone else gets in. By 9 I’m likely at my desk, responding to emails and looking over my schedule for the day. Every day is different and I spend an equal amount of time at my desk versus running around setting up a showroom or working on a photoshoot.
At 11am I am…
No day is “normal” so at 11 I could be with our photographers shooting set-ups for our monthly guideline, prepping for a photoshoot by reviewing buys, setting up a showroom for buying appointments or a PR press day, heading to the office after helping out on a store’s floor set or in a meeting.
What does lunch normally look like for you? Do you have a full lunch or are you lucky to grab a bar in between calls?
I eat lunch at my desk a lot – usually a salad or wrap from the cafeteria in our building. Some days I have time to sit and catch up with coworkers while I eat.
At 3pm I am… 
Working on a photoshoot, in a meeting, setting up a showroom or at my desk responding to emails or prepping for the next shoot.
How does a workday end for you? What time do you normally leave work?
Again, totally depends on the day. If I was at a store early I try to leave “early” (by 5), but that rarely happens. If I’m working on a photoshoot I’ll often be in the office until 8, sometimes later, as once our photographers leave I plan out our shots for the next day.
What do you do after work? An event? Dinner? More work?
After work I try to get to the gym or a workout class. Occasionally I’ll have a work happy hour with coworkers or will get drinks or dinner with a friend. And more nights than I wish to admit I bring my laptop home with me and work while watching tv on my couch. My work-life balance is a bit of a disaster (it’s actually something our team as a whole is trying to improve).
What time do you go to bed? 
I shower at night and like to wash off the day before getting into my nice clean bed (I hate the idea of bringing all of NYC’s dirt and grime into bed with me). The rest of my routine usually involves face masks, tea and either reading a book or catching up on a TV show. I would love to be asleep by 10pm each night, but my bedtime usually ends up being closer to 11:30.