Recent Articles

Do You Work for a Transformational or Transactional Company?

I read a really interesting blog post earlier this month, and since I'm still thinking about it nearly two weeks later, I've decided to discuss it with you. It was written by one of my favorite people, Jules Pieri, co-founder and CEO of The Grommet, a company that launches undiscovered consumer products. Jules is also…
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How Rocksbox Plans to Grow its Subscription Box Service

At the Women in Retail Leadership Summit last month, Erin O'Leary, vice president of marketing at Rocksbox, discussed her company's jewelry subscription box service. In this video, O'Leary addresses growing Rocksbox's subscriber base and what role personalization will play in that.
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Failure = Success

I found a really great video on Fast Company's website this week, and wanted to share it with you. It's all about NASA's "Fail Smart" program, which actually rewards employees for failing. How cool is that? In the video, Dr. Ellen Stoffen, NASA's chief scientist, explains that the coolest project she ever worked on at…
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An Interview With Lesley Jane Seymour, Founder, Covey Club

Lesley Jane Seymour, the former editor-in-chief of More, Marie Claire and Redbook magazines, was one of my favorite moderator/speakers at last month's Women in Retail Leadership Summit. She moderated a panel session titled Lessons Learned, where she interviewed an extraordinary group of women in retail about their career challenges and mistakes, as well as what they’ve…
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Diane Ellis on Growing Chico's Brand, Emerging Retail Tech

At the 2017 Women in Retail Leadership Summit, Diane Ellis, president of Chico's, gave insight into her hiring strategy, how she plans to grow the women's apparel and accessories brand, and examples of technologies that retailers should be keeping an eye on.
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Wildfang's Emma Mcilroy Talks Gen Z

In this video from the opening keynote at the Women in Retail Leadership Summit last month, Emma Mcilroy, CEO and co-founder of apparel brand Wildfang, talks about what she has learned about Generation Z. The generation, born between 1995 and 2012, are "ultra fluid" in their identities and expect brands to be transparent — even…
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This content is for members only Emma Mcilroy's Keynote From WIRLS 2017

Emma Mcilroy, CEO and co-founder of Wildfang, gave the opening keynote at the 2017 Women in Retail Leadership Summit. Above is her full-length keynote, in which she touches on topics such as Generation Z, branding, and some mistakes she's made along the way.
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6 Gems From WIRLS That Were NOT in My Swag Bag

Well, another Women in Retail Leadership Summit (WIRLS) has come and gone, and I'm still dizzy from all of the knowledge and connections I made at the event! And while the swag bags this year were extra special, I thought I would highlight six "gems" that I gleaned from the event that weren't actually in my swag…
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Happy Mother's Day!

For the many mothers out there who are Inner Circle readers, happy Mother's Day. Here's my special message to you: You're doing a great job, and your kids will turn out just fine despite the hours you spend away from them. Truly. While I'll be celebrating with my husband, two kids and own mother this Sunday,…
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Work/Life Balance Advice From 2017 ‘Outstanding Mother’ Honorees

Earlier this week, the Women in Retail Leadership Circle had the opportunity to attend the 2017 Outstanding Mother Awards. Four top women retail executives were honored — Jane Hertzmark Hudis, group president, The Estée Lauder Companies; Kate Oldham, senior vice president and general merchandise manager, beauty, lingerie and swim, Saks Fifth Avenue; Judy Schmeling, president…
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Our Favorite Moments From the Women in Retail Leadership Summit

Here are a few of our favorite moments from last week's Women in Retail Leadership Summit.
 

Another Successful WIRLS in the Books!

Well ladies, it's official: Women in Retail Leadership Summit 2017 is over! And what a phenomenal time we all had. Hate to toot our own horns here, but the event was spectacular. Three days of great networking, content, weather and, of course, the very best attendees we can ask for. Every year after I leave…
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4 Tips to Minimize the Impact of Shipping Surge Pricing

Well, it didn’t take long. Last week in my article "3 Things That Should Keep You Up at Night," I referenced that new "peak season” surcharges are already making it into the market. During its first-quarter earnings call, UPS wasn't shy about alerting the investment community that it's going to ask customers to pay extra…
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Work/Life Balance: The Secret Revealed

When we think about work/life balance, most of us imagine a scenario where we have it all together. Everything is in perfect balance. We’re killing it at work. Our home life is happy. Our house is clean and organized. We exercise regularly. And our social life is fun-filled. But realistically, work/life balance feels more like…
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Greetings From Miami!

Hello everyone! It's finally here! Today is the first day of the Women in Retail Leadership Summit, and the lineup is pretty stellar. Here are some highlights: Emma Mcilroy, co-founder and CEO of Wildfang, a lifestyle brand that badass women call home, will share her career journey and how she has been able to build a…
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Retail Executives Share Their Leadership Styles

The cover story of Total Retail’s Winter issue, Top Women in Retail, honored 15 women retail executives. Each honoree was asked a series of questions, including the following: How would you describe your leadership style? Here are select answers to that question from some of this year’s honorees. Traci Milholen Inglis, Chief Marketing Officer, Fast Fashion at…
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3 Things That Should Keep You Up at Night

We thought it would be helpful to provide insight into some critical issues all retailers are facing this year as it relates to their shipping programs. Unfortunately, many retailers fail to fully recognize and plan for some of the key issues that drive up the cost of doing business. The problems can compound themselves, especially…
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It’s (Almost) Summit Time!

I can’t believe it! It’s only one week until the start of the Women in Retail Leadership Summit. I’m so excited I can barely stand it. I'm so thrilled with the extraordinary speakers coming to this year’s event and the amazing group of attendees. Here are my top 10 reasons why this year’s Summit is going…
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Top Women in Retail Share Career Insights

The question below is a part of the Women in Retail Leadership Circle's sister brand, Total Retail’s, Winter 2017 issue cover story, Top Women in Retail 2017.  If you weren’t working in the retail industry, what do you think you’d be doing? Shira Goodman, President and CEO, Staples: I actually don’t think of myself as working in retail!…
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3 Ways Retailers Are Scaring Away Excited Customers

I was recently scrolling through Instagram and came across a picture of a guy wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, jeans and sneakers. I really liked the hoodie, so I navigated to the brand’s e-commerce site. That lifestyle photo that piqued my interest on Instagram? It was nowhere to be found. So I searched through the…
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The WIRL Summit? There's an App for That

Good Morning! Can you believe we're only two weeks away from the Women in Retail Leadership Summit (eek!)?! I don't know about you ladies, but I'm over April showers and ready for Miami beaches and sunshine. Pass the SPF and mojitos, please! With its killer agenda, fabulous networking opportunities and recently announced Pamper Party, we…
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How Did You Spend Equal Pay Day?

Hello ladies! Yesterday was Equal Pay Day, which was started by the National Committee on Pay Equity (NCPE) in 1996 as a public awareness event to illustrate the gap between men's and women's wages. According to NCPE, April 4 marks how far into 2017 women must work in order to make as much as men…
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Mindy Grossman on What Makes a Good Mentor/Mentee Relationship

Mindy Grossman, CEO and director of HSNi, sat down for an interview with Melissa Campanelli, co-founder of the Women in Retail Leadership Circle, at Shoptalk last month. In this video segment, Grossman discusses what makes a successful mentor/mentee relationship, who some of her mentors have been throughout her career, and how to get the most out…
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Tear Off the Mask of Perfection and Reveal Your True Beauty

Have you ever shown up at work, in a social scene or even with your family as though you have your act perfectly together, even when you didn’t? All people put on masks of perfection from time to time. But have you ever considered the implications that striving for perfection can have on your overall…
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Congrats to Chico's FAS!

Hello ladies! I have some great news to report this week about Chico's FAS, Inc. The company was recently designated a 2020 Women on Boards Honor Roll company for having 20 percent or more of its board seats held by women. Female directors hold 44 percent of Chico's board seats. What's more, 81 percent of…
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