I am one of two visual merchandise coordinators for Seattle Goodwill.

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VISUAL MERCHANDISE COORDINATOR
LISA BASYE

What do you do? I am one of two visual merchandise coordinators for Seattle Goodwill. My counterpart and I work to make sure that all of the Goodwill stores from Bellingham to Tukwila are organized and have a similar look. This helps give our customers a consistent shopping experience from store to store. We train all of the employees on basic merchandising skills as well as make their floor plans. We also do the set up for the Glitter Sale, which is our largest fundraiser for our job training and education centers.

How did you get started in that field? After managing specialty stores and departments, I went to work for an outerwear manufacturer that had visual merchandisers for key accounts. I ended up not only working in the field, merchandising for them, but running the program for the company.

What’s a typical day like? A typical day can be anything. I could be conducting training in the stores to teach our employees how to merchandise; overseeing a remodel, new store or floor move; creating training materials to help the stores; or teaching a merchandising class at one of our Job Training centers. If it is September through November, I am setting up for the Glitter Sale. The Glitter Sale is a two-day event held the second weekend of November at our Dearborn location. It features jewelry, designer handbags, shoes and apparel as well as vintage clothing and holiday dresses. It is staffed by volunteers, which allows us to donate 100 percent of the sales directly to our job training and education programs. It is awesome chaos and not to be missed!

What’s the best part of the job? Helping our associates and students not only learn how to keep our stores neat and organized, but giving them a skill they can use in any retail job. I also love it when I see a student from one of our retail programs out working in the store, and they are still using the “merchandising mantra” I teach them: “Categorize, size and colorize from the front of the store to the back of the store. Small items on top and larger items on the bottom.”

What surprises people about what you do? That my job exists. People don’t realize that someone works with the stores to keep them all looking neat, clean and appealing.

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