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How to be a...Commercial manager for a small, high-end label

Tracy Short, Head of fashion, lifestyle and luxury brands, The MBS Group.

Typically, a commercial manager in wholesale will be responsible for overseeing the distribution channels of the brand, working with clients, developing relationships, managing negotiations, financial accountability, forecasting and inventory purchasing, analysis, marketing and promotions.

A broad role, it is ideally suited to those with good business planning skills, excellent people skills, a flair for selling, strong oral and written communication skills and, of course, an affinity with the brand. During the selling season and before the shows - be they catwalk, trade or both - you will need lots of energy and drive as the hours can be long.

For small brands, you will be involved in other areas of the business too. You need to be commercial, passionate about the product and consider all its selling channels, including fashion shows, wholesale, its flagship store, etail and any scheduled store openings.

Responsibilities include defining, implementing and managing the wholesale business strategy and infrastructure. This includes business planning, development, profitability and operations.

The average salary for this level is around £55,000.

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