Learning to work with different “thinkers”
On October 17, Executive in Residence for Retailing and Consumer Behavior and SoHE alum Linda Ahlers was on hand to help students in the Product Development Strategies in Retail practice and prepare for project presentations of competitive shopping and trend boards.
Based on the type of creative thinker they are, students were assigned partners and product categories. Because everyone was given a contrasting thinker partner, they were each provided information about thinker types and how to best work with and bring out the creativity of someone who thinks differently than themselves.
Students then self-determined their retailer/brand and target customer and completed a Fall 2019 “CompShop”—or background study —for their assigned category. They had two-weeks of access to TrendStop, an online fashion forecasting service out of London, to create forecasts for product developers and designers. The final step was formal presentations to Kohl’s product managers.
The Kohl’s Product Managers commented that the SoHE student projects were equivalent to what is done in the industry and that it was great to see students getting this valuable experience as undergraduates. They especially appreciated the detail and nods to how lifestyle and macro trends are influencing consumerism.