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Leslie S.

Browning
lbrow18489@aol.com
Orlando, Florida 32828

(cell) 815-245-1624

RETAIL OPERATIONS / BUYING / MERCHANDISING / TRAINING


A position for a firm requiring a professional with strategic management experience in large-scale, high
volume operations of consumer merchandise in commercial and/or retail sectors.
OVERVIEW & HIGHLIGHTS
20+ year track record of promotions from department store management to corporate
operations/merchandising management for 3000+ stores and P&L for $900 million in payroll control.
Executive Level Negotiator: Secured funding from outside vendors and internal VPs to create and/or
adjust merchandise lines, establish national sales promotions, train staff, etc.
Operations Efficiency: Used Six Sigma processes to improve B2B operations. Directed change to
nation-wide, customer-service telephone system and to computerized wholesale receiving from truck
deliveries through sales floor placement.
Buying and Marketing: Developed successful merchandise line structures from initial concept and
vendor negotiations to store promotions that significantly increased sales throughout the Sears
Holdings department stores, commercial sales, and online sales channels.
Training: Led numerous cross-functional national, regional, field and vendor management teams.
Developed and implemented training programs for Store Managers, Merchandisers, and Contractors
in Commercial Sales Division for and Home Appliance sales.
Management: Direct supervision of national managers and indirect charge for 15,000 merchandise
field staff.
PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE
Sears Holdings, Hoffman Estates, IL - Parent company of retail giants Sears and Kmart.
Buyer Bath Dcor, Fastening Hardware and Pumps, Tool Division (2012 2014)
Responsible for over 15 categories of goods comprising annual sales of $85 million across K-Mart
and Sears retail platforms (1900+ locations) and online Sears.com and Kmart.com sales networks.
Monitored sales performance to maximize sales by negotiating with vendors to market new product
lines, subsidize promotions and reach new audiences.
Developed a turn-around strategy for Bath Dcor when the Martha Stewart was discontinued.
Consolidated vendors to modernize the Bath Essentials furniture line and sourced a new vendor
to add a wood line that is currently the largest promotion.
Managed relations with major manufacturers of targeted brands and merchandise.
Negotiated with Zenith to sell on Kmart.com, increased sales volume of Zenith 2%.
Designed weekly promotions reaching a 2-3 million print audience, in-store and digital
customers. Communicated with marketing, operations and design teams ensure a customer
centric product assortment, address gaps and grow market share.
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Maintained vendor relations and routinely negotiated vendor subsidies for promotional
costs (print and price discounts) saving up to $150,000 per week.

Continued
Sears Holdings

Leslie S. Browning

Page Two

Merchandise Manager for Hardware, Tools and Paint (2006 2012)


Developed the business strategy for merchandising the 2nd largest category in over 2500 Sears and
Kmart stores. Directly communicated promotional strategy, created Holiday Gift Bar setups and
designed training for 15,000 field associates.
Redesigned the flow of Sears and layout of Kmarts tool departments. Ensured cohesiveness
of the lines, oversaw redesign of signage, and instructed field staff.
Director of Strategy for Hardlines (2005 2006)
Promoted to Director of merchandising for two categories: Appliances and Electronics, and Home
Improvement. Direct supervision of two managers and four associates. Coordinated executive level
cross-functional team meetings, including VP Sales, VP Visuals, Store Managers, Buyers,
Operations, Inventory, Loss Prevention and Training.
Sourced new customer-friendly merchandise lines from vendors.
Turn-around development of merchandise lines: negotiated promotions and discounts with
vendors. Implemented vendor trainings for Associates for coordinated events.
Merchandise Manager for Appliances and Electronics (2004 2005)
Reported to Strategic VP of Operations for Sears and managed two Associate Merchandisers.
Responsible for developing and creating monthly sales and marketing plans for unique
merchandise lines for a new business format for 8 Sears Grand and 63 Sears Essential stores.
Successfully converted Kmart stores into new Sears Grand & Essentials store lay-out.
Created the successful model of the new Sears Grand format, from strategic vision to actual
store layout. Led store teams on implementation of new format of 8 store physical locations.
Director of Marketing, Merchandising and Sales Development for Contract Sales, Sears,
Roebuck and Company (2001 2004)
Developed B2B commercial product lines and sales marketing plans for appliances in the home
builders (NAHB) and national apartment associations of sales over $500 million annually.
Increased market share of Sears Kenmore and national brand appliances for three consecutive
years with the creation of a stainless steel line of appliances, with a 3-tiered pricing structure.
Developed the line from initial concept through to POP field marketing campaign.
Negotiated with national brands such as GE and Whirlpool on line structure, pricing, marketing
promotions, and training materials for such products.
Director of Store Operations, Sears, Roebuck and Company (1999 2001)
P&L responsibility for over $900 million in payroll expense for sales teams, general offices,
replenishment, receiving and automated phone system in all Sears full-line stores.
Researched and implemented computerization of replenishment to improve backroom
efficiency. Oversaw remodeling and system installation at 25-50 stores per year.
Achieved extensive annual savings through implementation of improved processes.
EDUCATION & PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS/TRAINING
University of Central Florida, FL BS Business Administration, pending
Henry Ford Community College, MI AS Business Communications
SIX SIGMA Green Belt Certified, 2002
National Association of Professional Women
LinkedIn Contact: www.linkedin.com/in/lesliesbrowning