Retail Confessions: The Neiman Marcus Jewelry Counter
"Rich people love to get pushed to make that spend. But I would always be like, 'No, you don't need it.'"
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Retail Confessions is an exclusive Back Row series in which I talk to current and former retail workers about the shopping habits of the world’s wealthiest people. Previous editions have looked at Saks, Harrods, and Nordstrom. For this installment, I spoke to a former Neiman Marcus employee who specialized in fine jewelry. This person, who had ambitions to work in the jewelry industry, was widely advised to gain some retail experience after graduate school, thus landing at Neiman Marcus. The interview subject started a few years before the pandemic and left partway through it.
(If you worked in high-end retail and want to talk about it, reply to this email or send me a DM. Confessions are completely anonymous.)
How did working at Neiman’s compare to your previous job?
it actually ended up paying as much as I was making in the nonprofit sector. So I was like, there is money to be had here. I don't need a lot. I was probably not one of the highest performing. At a company like Neman's or Saks, there are competitive people on every team, and those people can make it really hard. But I also encountered some of the best professionals I've ever met in my life, which I was truly surprised by. I had worked in sales in college. I was preparing for the worst. It ended up being a really great experience. Most of my coworkers had college degrees. They just were consummate professionals. Unless you're there, you would never know how like the ecosystem of the ultra-luxury retail world works.
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