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How I got here - Massimo Ciabattini

Harrods’ trainee retail manager for luxury accessories gained a sales degree with the department store.

What does your diary look like today?

As a trainee retail manager I spend most of my time on the shop floor. My main focus
is on delivering retail sales and service strategy through the effective management of my team and inspirational leadership.

What task are you most looking forward to?

As always, I’m looking forward to exceeding my daily sales targets.

What task do you wish you could postpone?

Administrative work isn’t my favourite thing, but fortunately I can delegate.

How did you get to where you are now?

Because I believe I’ve developed a strong, positive mindset made of passion for Harrods, plus humility towards life, commitment to transform challenges into opportunities and a determination to pursue goals.

What has been your career highlight?

Undoubtedly the graduation ceremony for the Harrods BA (Hons) degree in sales. It was a wonderful and very emotional event, attended by Harrods’ senior management team, the university lecturers, colleagues and, of course, my family. It was an extraordinary experience sharing such a unique achievement with my co-workers after two years of intense studies and hard work.

If you could change one thing about your career path, what would it be?

I began my studies in Italy, starting out in computer engineering before moving into fashion retail. Looking back I wish I’d started working in fashion retail sooner. It would have given me more experience today.

Who is your mentor?

Marigay McKee, Harrods’ chief merchant. She is a truly inspirational person, full of knowledge, and I’ve learnt a
huge amount from her.

What’s the best piece of advice she’s given you?

To always take your job seriously, maintain a great work ethic and lead by example in order to build a solid reputation. Also, time is a great resource and it is crucial to make the best out of it. Above all I remember these words, ‘Knowledge is power’.

How do you see your career progressing?

Harrods has fantastic opportunities. I see myself progressing towards higher management positions in the store, and am nurturing the dream of one day becoming a director there.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to follow in your footsteps?

To have passion in what you do, and always remain humble and fair to others and stay positive. People are one of the most valuable assets in everything we do so it’s essential to learn to work well with them.

What other area of fashion would you like to work in?

Womenswear. I’m also fascinated by brands such as Christian Dior and Valentino which - with their unique touch of heritage - express women’s beauty with exquisite dresses and accessories.

  • Salaries for this position range from £25,000 to £30,000 (estimate by Handle Recruitment)

CV

2012 Trainee retail manager, fashion accessories, Harrods
2012 Graduated with first class BA (Hons) in sales from Harrods
2012 Concessions supervisor, fashion accessories, Harrods
2009 Sales associate (Jimmy Choo, Marc Jacobs, then Dolce & Gabbana), fashion accessories, Harrods
2007 Sales associate, menswear, David Mayer Naman

  • If you want to be featured on the Drapers Jobs page, email james.knowles@emap.com

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