Michelle entered into retail as a teenager and knew it was the industry for her. From formal training in Merchandise Management through experience in the owner operator specialty store environment, to department store specialty and big box departments, Michelle's focus has always been growth, both her own and of the retailers she has worked with.
After high school Michelle completed a 2 year Merchandising Management diploma program at Capilano College. While there, the owner of Jeda shoes, a local Vancouver based chain, was a guest speaker in one of her classes. Their introduction marked the beginning of Michelle's career in retail management, starting as an Assistant Store Manager and moving rapidly to Store Manager and then multi-unit Manager roles, while also assisting with buying.
Michelle then moved from the specialty store environment into the world of department store retailing. Her first stop was the Hudson's Bay Company as department head of the British Columbia Designer department, where she got to seek out new and local designers and buy their lines for the downtown Vancouver store. From this department head role Michelle then moved into Sales Management in ladies wear.
Her next move was to Sears Canada to open one of the 7 Eatons stores in the country. She started there when the new Pacific Center store was a shell, and saw it become a stunning retail environment. Joining prior to store opening gave Michelle the opportunity to recruit, hire and train her entire sales team. Continuing her career with Sears through middle and senior leadership roles, Michelle has hired and managed hundreds of direct reports, and worked with a variety of commodities ranging from men's and ladies fashions, footwear and accessories, soft home and most recently jewellery and cosmetics. Michelle then joined the Sears regional team as their Market Business Development Manager for the Pacific region, where she worked with store leadership teams to drive results, recruit and train in the furniture and major appliance departments.
Michelle was born and raised in Vancouver where she still lives with her family. She joined the JRoss Retail Recruiters team in 2008 with many years of retail management experience, and a true passion for the retail industry in Vancouver.