Tag Archives: developing talent

Feb27

Career Tips from Superdry

Superdry

For any young person coming out of school or college finding the first job can be a daunting prospect. This may especially be the case if the dream is starting a career in fashion as the industry is notorious for its competitive nature, largely due to its popularity. Taking the first steps to attaining a position in the industry might seem like a mountain to climb.

Despite the reputation of job hunting in the fashion industry nothing is unattainable when the right boxes are ticked and effort is made. As with most job aspiration reaching the goal can be simplified by breaking down your targets that can help to visualise the steps that you need to take.

  • Experience and Portfolio – the difference between being successful in an interview and not making the cut can be as simple as the amount of experience that you have behind you. Taking opportunities to get into the working environment and challenge yourself will build your knowledge of what work you can thrive with and is right for you.

 

  • CV and Interview Follow-ups – Stand out from the crowd when sending your CV to a company or after interviews. Turning away an application is a lot easier when there hasn’t been a conversation between you and the employer

 

  • Look at your talents and use them – There are plenty of areas in the fashion industry which require a range of skills, don’t think that you have to be an expert fashion designer to be in the industry. Roles in marketing, writing, and finance all have a place in fashion; find your strength and follow it.

 

  • Manage your online presence – social media is an invaluable tool for keeping up to date with current trends in the industry as well as developments in the companies you’re aspiring to. Follow the people that are in the know with the key information that could help to give you the killer edge on others.

See additional guidelines for what’s looked for in the fashion industry with a full list of job roles in this article from Fashion-Schools.org.

Superdry are one of the most prominent international fashion brands to spring from the UK over the last two decades. Started in 2003 by founders Julian Dunkerton and James Holder, the brand distinguishes itself fusing American and Japanese-inspired graphics with British style. Celebrit­ies such as David Beckham, Bradley Cooper and Justin Bieber have worn and endorsed the brand.

Brand Director

Julian Dunkerton first entered the fashion industry in 1985 at the age of 19 through a government grant scheme. He now takes the role of product and brand director, focussing on the  creative force behind Superdry.

Is there any advice you would give to people, in their early twenties, looking to start a business?

You have to forget about objects and just try to be the best that you can possibly be in the niche that you think you have found. There are thousands of niches, it’s just a case of finding yours. Never think of yourself. It’s about your staff, your customer, and your business. You’re tenth on the list. If you are thinking that you are doing it for material things, then forget it, because you’ll never make the right decisions in business to build the business.

Is your specific route that you have taken something that you would advise others to follow? A lot of aspirational young people are beginning to consider university to be the default option.

I think it’s very typical for people like me to have not been to university. If you look at the serious entrepreneurs in this country you will find that a huge number of them have not been to university and out of the entrepreneurs that have been to university they become entrepreneurs because often of their particular skills base, so they go down a very narrow channel.

James Holder co-founded Superdry with Julian, sharing his drive and continued ambition for fashion. Also starting his career early Holder shares his journey into the fashion industry:

Superdry

What made you decide to get into the world of fashion?

I fell into fashion by accident! When I was at college, I was crazily being an expert in skateboarding, and somehow I saw that nobody is making that king of cool t-shirts for these skaters, so I started doing them by myself and selling them to others. From that, I saw that I can make a living out of it. So it was not what I love for fashion, it was what I loved for creativity. Even for this day, I don’t count myself as a fashion designer, but as a product designer.

What has been the best part about creating the brand?

We are obsessed with products, and also with creativity and with what we do. When things got tough, we see that it’s time to give more creative and expansion. You’ve got a different source of emotional attachment to each product you make, but you’re in love with them.  So whether it could be the smallest little accessory or the most incredible artisan of the jacket, you will have the same emotional attachment, so it is a joy to do this.  We’re a premium branded brand, but we think far for fashion and we have a completely dynamic clothes collection that changes on a weekly basis.

There are many avenues to take to get into the industry that you want to be involved with. Opportunities might not present themselves as being a direct step into the fashion world yet with building your experiences your path should follow where your strengths lie. And remember that with whatever role you decide to pursue it should be something that you love and enjoy doing above all else!

Contributor, Mathew Foster

May07

5 Tips For Managing Interns

Image courtesy of BCU

An internship is the perfect way to prepare students for future employment. As a manager you should strive to get the best out of your intern. This will help the intern to become a great employee. Here are 5 tips for managing interns:

Guide. Interns will not come into the workplace knowing the basics about how things are done so you will need to guide them. Make sure expectations and goals are clear and monitor how their work is being done so you can make corrections if necessary and offer them advice. The value of an internship for students is that it’s how they learn the basic functions about the job they want. This is their chance to experience what it will be like in the real work world.

Teach. Don’t treat your intern like they are just cheap labor. You should enjoy teaching and be willing to assist your intern with achieving their goals. If you create a positive learning experience for your intern they will repay you with positive brand awareness for your company. A great internship experience is like free advertising.

Plan. Have enough work for your intern to do. Your intern should be given tasks that are relevant to the job they want to do. But if there is downtime the intern might not know what to do next. Some will find stuff to do around the office, but not all interns will take the initiative. Plan ahead by having other projects the intern can work on. This could include things such as filing that has piled up or allow them to be creative and work on social media projects like creating a Facebook page for your company if you don’t have one.

Expect. You might not have the same expectations of your intern as you do for your regular staff, but you should have some expectations so that the time you put into hiring, training, and supervising them won’t be a waste. Even if your intern is unpaid they should still be accountable doing quality work.

Communicate. Have weekly meetings with your intern to keep the lines of communication open and create a mentoring relationship.Take the time to get to know your intern and discuss the work they are doing.These conversations will help you when it is time to do reviews and write letters of recommendation. If the intern is good maybe they’ll be your next full-time employee.

These are a few things you can do to make sure you are getting the best out of your intern. Keeping these points in mind will help with managing your intern and developing them into hire worthy employees.

Written by Monique Skinner