Director of Merchandising

Obōz Footwear is a wholesale brand founded in 2007.  Bozeman, Montana is an outdoor adventurer’s paradise and it’s our home.  It's what motivates us to lace up daily and explore the 18 million acres of Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem that surround us. A vast and breathtaking landscape just waiting to be explored on two feet. Bozeman is where it all started and it’s what inspired our name. Outside + Bozeman = Obōz.   

Our shoes are designed with one focus in mind, to get people out into the wilderness and onto the trail. True To The Trail® guides everything we do. From building great fitting footwear to how we give back to our community and the way we treat our planet. It's a mindset that grounds us in what's most important, doing things the right way. Because any other way just wouldn't be true to the trail.

Sustainability is at the heart of being true to the trail. We love the outdoors, and the way we figure, the more trees the more outdoors for us all to enjoy; so we plant a tree for every pair of Obōz sold. Our HQ is powered by clean wind energy – 100% of our office power comes from wind farms in Central Idaho and Washington. We carbon-offset our shoe shipments, employee travel, and the office utility bill. And, the shoes we don't sell make a difference, too – we donate our unsellable (but still trail-worthy) shoes, partnering with Project Sole and local non-profits to find feet in need.

Obōz has joined forces with the internationally recognized outdoor brand and retailer, Kathmandu. Together Obōz and Kathmandu are working to grow Kathmandu North America in the wholesale market.

 

Position Overview

The Director of Merchandising is an integral part of the the Obōz leadership team. As Director of Merchandising, you lead creation and execution of the overall brand vision via product strategy, while ensuring short and long range Obōz business objectives are met. 

Combining art and science, you will drive collaboration throughout the entire Go-To-Market process, resulting in market and brand appropriate product lines.

In this role, you will leverage in-depth knowledge of the Obōz brand DNA, competitive positioning, consumer segmentation, and real-time sales and market insights to articulate a long range product strategy.  You will manage all aspects of the merchandising function including product architecture, pricing strategy, and analysis.  

The Director of Merchandising will assess direct and aspirational competition with respect to financial conditions, trends, marketing and product strategy; their seasonal plans will evolve accordingly to ensure market leadership.  The Director of Merchandising will be seen as a leader cross-divisionally and direct reports will be developed into high performing contributors. 

 

Accountabilities

  • Contribute to the creation of the Obōz team’s long range goals, and build a long term product road map to achieve business objectives and revenue targets.
  • Drive a strategic product point of view to deliver industry leading, consumer focused, and market relevant product assortments to maximize Obōz’s market share and growth.
  • Champion and inspire Go-To-Market partners from concept through execution, taking into account constraints, resources, and brand priorities.
  • Maximize category presence among current distribution channels and identify new product opportunities for existing customers and channels.
  • Partner closely with Director of Marketing to ensure marketing strategies and tactics support the product strategy,  brand positioning and seasonal sell through.
  • Change future strategies in-season where needed and provide appropriate and timely direction to the cross-functional team in order to react quickly to customer and business trends.
  • Collaborate with Sales and Operations to translate financial and business indicators into meaningful long range product and sales forecasts; ensure that smart risks are being taken, basic businesses are protected and financial targets are met.
  • Skillfully analyze ambiguous problems, rationally taking action and leveraging cross-functional resources.
  • Collaborate with the Obōz Leadership Team to establish annual KPIs and support teams in developing and executing on plans to achieve those objectives.
  • Build tools, establish processes within the Merchandising team to create an insights driven culture.
  • Oversee the reporting and analysis of historical data and current trends by category, sub-category, SKU and attribute to identify opportunities and risks within each category, and partner with team to implement actions to address.
  • Stay current on industry trends and knowledge by attending select trade shows, retail store and account visits, market trips; engage in a partnership with the consumer insights team, and champion a connection with customers.
  • Serve as leading contributor/presenter at major milestones, sales launch, and ad hoc presentation needs.

 

Requirements

  • At least 10+ years of relevant work experience in outdoor or athletic footwear merchandising and/or product management.
  • A University degree in business, marketing or related field of study.
  • You are highly motivated, self-managed, and are able to think strategically and independently.
  • You can set strategy and vision, but you are not afraid to execute at a tactical level—there is no task too small or too big for you.
  • You are a collaborative leader who can engage cross-functional teams at all levels of the organization.
  • You are motivated by the end consumer and love following the ever-evolving retail landscape.
  • You collaborate as a team player with ability to build and influence relationships easily across various stakeholder groups, moving initiatives forward.
  • You are experienced in managing multiple seasonal projects which have heavy dependencies requiring strong leadership to align multiple teams and stakeholders.
  • You maintain a high attention to detail, including proven ability to manage multiple, competing priorities simultaneously.
  • You are great at communication, whether it be one on one or in groups, through visual presentations and written communications skills.
  • You thrive in a fast-paced environment where innovation is a way of life.
  • Able to travel domestically and internationally without restrictions, up to 30%.

 

Key Relationships

  • The Director of Merchandising manages the PLM team and reports to the Obōz brand President.
  • The Director of Merchandising serves on the Obōz leadership team.
  • The entire Obōz Team, including the external sales team and various Kathmandu departments, are all key collaborators.
  • In support of the Go-To-Market process, the Director of Merchandising role will forge and nurture relationships with North American Outdoor Industry retailers and other industry partners.


Company Culture

Obōz has a small but growing family-feel team. We are collaborative and thrive on cross-functional relationships.

We care about our customers, the outdoors and each other. Our office is relaxed and non-conventional with a dog-friendly culture and we have world class trails right outside our front door.     

We love the outdoors, and are passionate about doing the right thing for a more sustainable world for us all to share.  We are proud of our amazing brand and we aspire create the best and most comfortable footwear in the world so everyone can enjoy the outdoors with us.  

We want to share our success with other likeminded, passionate people who enjoy working in a fast-paced industry and share our company values.

 

Compensation

As well as amazing footwear benefits and awesome folks to work with, Obōz offers a competitive compensation and benefits package including Medical, Dental, and vision, 401k retirement, paid time off and an opportunity to earn a cash bonus and become a Kathmandu Holdings shareholder.

 

Want to join us? Please send your resume and cover letter to The Forest Group.

THE FOREST GROUP

6181 Clark Mountain Road

Lotus, CA 95651

(530) 344-0100 ph

 adam@theforestgroup.com  deb@theforestgroup.com

All inquiries will be held in strict confidence.

The Forest Group works only with equal opportunity employers