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Erika

Partner, New York

My profileMy profile

When I joined Bain out of college, I wasn't sure what I wanted to be when I grew up. Consulting sounded like a good place to start and the smarts, energy and people at Bain seemed like a great fit.

Why Bain?

When I joined Bain out of college, I wasn't sure what I wanted to be when I "grew up." Consulting sounded like a good place to start and the smarts, energy and people at Bain seemed like a great fit.  13 years later, I'm still here because of the people- the teams that inspire me on a daily basis, my peer group - which is unparalleled - and a whole host of people that have been here 5+ years longer than me - I learn from them every day.

*Erika was recently named as a recipient of Consulting magazine's Future Leader Award at the publication's annual Women Leaders in Consulting Achievement Awards, held in New York.

My passion

After dabbling in lots of different industries, I have spent all of my time for the last 5 years doing retail work.  In retail a lot of my clients are "creative types," which provides a good counter balance to my more left-brained perspective. 

Outside of work, I love to travel and to cook.  I go on one big trip a year and am headed off to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro and will do a game trip in Tanzania this fall.

My favorite case

I've spent the last 18 months working with a major apparel designer and retailer.  Early last year we partnered with the executive team to put in place a whole new strategy for the business - including some major asset dispositions - and have been supporting the leadership team in making those happen ever since. I've had teams visiting stores in Oklahoma, garment factories in places ranging from New York to Indonesia, and lots and lots of stores.  This is a three year turn-around, but halfway in the results are starting to show and I am immensely proud of the work that our teams have done.

My personal results story

We did a project a few years ago with a major US retailer that had been burned on its first two attempts to really scale up their e-commerce business.  We worked with the executive team to make a case to keep the business in house and return the business to profitability.  Our team ultimately optimized the merchandise assortments, designed the DC footprint, and helped select the software vendors to make the site run.  The .com division secured over $400M in capital to invest in the business and is today, 4 years later, approaching $1B in (profitable) sales - almost 10x the size the company was when we started working with them.

A final thought

The most important consideration in the interview process is looking for people that you will like, learn from, and be inspired by.  This is a hard job, with hours that are sometimes long, and the only thing that can keep you going when it gets late or when you're on the road are the personal relationships you have with the people around you, and the coaching they will give you to help you put things in perspective. 

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