Being an omnichannel brand focused on building product lines that inspire our customers is a fun challenge. Our merchant teams are responsible for looking to the future and recapping the past to ensure we are not losing sight of our customer’s desires & needs. The merchant job is highly collaborative, and they have many partners throughout the business. They partner with design to ensure the product is on trend and works within our brand filter, and they work with the allocation team to ensure the right product amount, color and sizes arrive at the right time. They are continually analyzing the productivity of each piece of merchandise. Their partnership with marketing and visual is where the vision comes full circle as it's presented to the customer. The team is encouraged daily to come up with new ideas not only in the product lines, but also to excel in their careers.   

Barbara Wagner has built her career starting from stores to the GMM role, so we wanted asked her what excites her the most about Merchandising: "That it’s always changing. The role of the merchant is always chasing better business, better comps – always trying to do things better. It’s exciting to invest in something, believe in it enough to sell it to your internal partners that then take it to another level by presenting that product in a way that is inspiring to our field teams and customers. Your constantly inspired from current business (what the customer is voting for) and what the external influences are that help us to optimize our business – whether that is new categories, new product selections, new trends, color and/or price."

- Barbara Wagner - GMM & SVP, Merchandising


The team shares career advice they'd give to their younger selves!

"Slow down! Your career and promotions will come, but take the time for yourself to learn and grow at every step along the way."

- Georgia Howe, Merchandising Manager, Outlet

"Don't worry about what you are going to be when you grow up. Focus on being a kid."

- Tish Gordon, VP, Merchandising

"Surround yourself with people you admire and ditch the ones who breed negativity."

- Kelly Unangst, Merchandising Manager

We encourage creativity, innovation and smart risk-taking. 


Taylor Attea, Associate Merchant, Sweaters, shared with us her career story: "When I was graduating college I never saw myself working in retail. I thought I would find a job in sales, recruiting, or finance. When I joined the Talbots Team I knew I had joined a company that had strong values that I related to. The Talbots brand is so unique and has built such a legacy for both the customers and the employees, I could feel the support of the Team environment immediately. Talbots has provided a positive work environment for me to really grow and develop my skills as a merchant. Needless to say, I am happy that my path has lead me here!"


To hear more from our Merchandising associates, follow us on LinkedIn.