While we would never argue with “You are what you eat,” we could make a very good case for “You are what you wear.” Fashion designers, marketers, and merchandisers are the creators of everyday art as we wrap ourselves in their vision. Remember that the fashion industry is more than creativity and passion — it’s also extremely competitive. That’s why our Fashion programs focus on the creative and business aspects of this fast-paced industry. What will your impact be in fashion? Where will your designs, inspiration, and business acumen take you? Take your first steps now...

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Boutique Owner

Also called: Specialty Store Owner, Owner

Job Description
Successful boutique owners are very entrepreneurial-minded and driven people who use a combination of savvy business skills and in-depth knowledge of the fashion retail industry to make a profit. Their stores often target a specific customer profile and often carry a specific mix of clothing and/or apparel designers that appeal to this demographic. Boutique owners must be jacks or jills of all trades as they typically oversee all aspects of a boutiques operations from planning and purchasing their inventory, setting up the in-store displays and managing employees.

Salary Range
$0 to $100,000+*Losses are expected in the first few years of operations due to initial investments and expenditures. Once stabilized, boutiques can become a good source of income for its owner as well as an alternative to working very hard for someone else.
Outlook
Being a small business owner is a dream for many people, and the value of being one's own boss cannot be underestimated. Setting up a boutique usually requires obtaining a bank loan or drawing from personal savings to cover initial investments. Often, successful owners are those who can attract investors with a solid business plan and operational structure. Once the store is profitable, owners can go on to open additional stores, or if they have created a strong enough brand, sell franchises for subsequent locations.

Qualifications
Education – A bachelor’s degree in Business Management or Fashion Retailing/Merchandising/Marketing is common. An MBA is a plus in attracting investors.Experience – Extensive experience in the fashion retail industry in a variety of positions usually starting at the level of retail sales associate or stock clerk and with some experience as a retail store manager.Personal Characteristics/Skills – entrepreneurial and risk-taking personality; solid business background in fields such as Marketing, Accounting, Sales and Management; in-depth and up-to-date knowledge of the fashion retail marketplace, including trends and forecasts; flexible; multi-tasking capabilities; excellent time management and communication skills.

Career Path
Retail Sales Associate > Buyer > Retail Manager > Boutique Owner

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