Written by Bobby Nairn, One Step Retail Solutions Business Development Manager
For our feature article, we sat down for a Q&A with Alicia Kreisberg, CAO of One Step Retail Solutions. Alicia has navigated her way through the retail industry, from what was thought to be a “temporary role” to becoming an inspirational trailblazer guiding retailers to improve their operations through the use of innovative technology. Learn more about Alicia’s story, her advice to women, and what she predicts for the future of retail.
Why did you decide to pursue a career in retail?
All of my jobs throughout college were retail jobs. I have always enjoyed both shopping and helping people, so it was a good fit for me. When I started at One Step, it was meant to be short term, and that was 25 years ago!
If you could go back in time, what advice would you give to yourself before entering the retail industry?
Be prepared for constant change and be willing to shift. It is not an industry where you can coast, you have to be willing to work hard and most importantly, always stay relevant.
Are there any challenges you feel you have experienced from being a woman in the workplace?
In the beginning, yes. I had to work harder to gain respect and prove to people that I knew what I was talking about. As I grew in my experience and my positions, gained the knowledge and produced quality products over the years, only then did the challenges seem to fade.
Over the past year, what professional initiative has made you feel the most fulfilled?
Going back to the basics and figuring out why we do what we do and looking for ways to do it better. When you have been in business for a while you do things because that is the way it has always been done. It’s easy to slip into a comfort zone. It has been very refreshing and exciting to shake off that mindset.
What are the biggest changes you have witnessed in the retail industry?
The shift where consumers are driving technology. Since people are always on their phones and “connected,” they demand that their retail transactions are a seamless experience. Retailers have also had to change because almost anything can be purchased online, so they have to make coming into a store worthwhile.
When you unplug from your professional career, what do you enjoy doing with your free time?
I really value spending time with my family and close friends. I also enjoy traveling, reading, listening to music and going to the movies.
What technology or trend do you feel is most important to a retailer in 2019?
I think there are two priorities that have emerged; creating a valuable customer experience and Omnichannel. You need to provide Omni-technology in order to provide the experience consumers are demanding today.
If roles were reversed, and you were an independent retailer, what would your top priority be?
To figure out how to do something different than my competition to keep my customers coming back for more, while at the same time attracting new shoppers. I believe that people still want to go to a retail store if there is something unique that they can offer. Technology is vital for any retailer who wants to succeed during the time of Amazon and brand retailing.
Who has inspired you most in your professional career?
My husband, Scott. I am always amazed at how visionary he is and how right he is about where the industry is going and when we need to be there. He thinks big and does not let “can’t be done” stop him. He always dreams big and expects that we will figure out how to get it done.
In one sentence, what guidance would you share with fellow women in the business world?
Do something you love and find a way to make that part of your every day.