LAUNCHING: AFSHAN BANU

Current Employer:

Valiram group – Victoria’s Secret

Time at the company:

3 years 4 months

THE BIG QUESTIONS

WHAT IS YOUR PROFESSIONAL TITLE?

I am Assistant Vice President of Merchandising, Planning & Allocation.

WHAT DO YOU DO ON A DAY-TO-DAY BASIS?

To build and support overall brand strategy for Victoria’s Secret by delivering sales and profit contribution of the brand. Managing business operations as brand specific contact for merchandising, planning and allocation & operations. Direct responsibilities include managing brand strategies, seasonal sales plans and reorder fulfilment and business development.

WHAT DID YOU WANT TO DO WHEN YOU WERE A CHILD?

I really wanted to work in retail fashion business and that passion made me achieve my dreams and I have been working in retail for last 23 years.

WHAT ACADEMIC QUALIFICATIONS DO YOU HAVE?

I have a Diploma in Fashion Technology, majoring in Merchandising Planning.

WHAT’S THE BEST CAREER ADVICE YOU’VE EVER BEEN GIVEN?

If you have determination and passion everything can be achieved, never let your passion die, always pursue and live it.

WHO IS YOUR ROLE MODEL AND WHY?

My Mother, she has always taught me to dream big and achieve my dreams through 100 percent commitment towards work, dedication and passion.

WHAT IS THE BEST THING ABOUT YOUR CURRENT WORKING ENVIRONMENT?

Working for fastest, sexiest and creative brand in the world: Victoria’s Secret. Dealing and working with different countries and bringing together different people and cultures.

WHAT WOULD YOU CHANGE ABOUT YOUR DAILY WORK ROUTINE IF YOU COULD?

I would like to have flexible work hours.

WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF PROFESSIONALLY IN FIVE YEARS’ TIME?

I am working on my dream project to have my own online brand in home living. I  believe that home is where we spend our time with our loved ones and share enjoyable moments together. I want to help inspire beautiful decorating ideas in every corner of homes – a place where lives are shared.

DO YOU FEEL YOU CAN BE THE SAME PERSON AT WORK AND IN PRIVATE?

Most of times yes, but of course you need to balance your personal side as you flourish in your career.

WHERE AND IN WHAT ROLES ARE WOMEN IN THE LEADERSHIP STRUCTURE AT YOUR COMPANY?

Most of the leadership team in my company is women.

DOES DIVERSITY MATTER TO YOU?

Very much, it is important to have diversity in all aspects of life.

HOW GOOD IS YOUR WORK LIFE BALANCE?

Moderate.

WHAT QUALITIES DOES BEING IN YOUR ROLE NECESSITATE?

Focus, Fast, Frugal and Fun. Always ready for Challenges, open-minded and willing to learn to manage business at all times. Able to take tough decisions when necessary and most importantly always have Fun.

ANY FINAL COMMENTS?

Success lies in how you approach things, so always keep 4 things in mind: insights, thinking, behaviours and results. Believe in teamwork and respect for others.

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