This spring marked the return of the Center for Retailing Studies’ Sponsor Forum, which brought the top executives from sponsoring companies to campus for a day to hear the latest in retailing research.
Marketing Professor Venkatesh Shankar and Big Picture Thinking founder Brandon Coleman, Jr. ’78 joined Lowe’s VP of Marketing and Advertising Bob Gfeller in bringing innovate concepts to the table for CRS sponsors.
The center’s forum and annual Zale lecture also brought five name-brand retailing speakers (including Gfeller) to 10 business graduate and undergrad classes last week.
But the highlight of the week in retailing was Zale Visionary Merchant Award winner Myron Ullman, chairman and CEO of J.C. Penney Company, who told students that retail is a contact sport. “You can’t just be nice and hold onto your share in the market,” he said. “The customer votes every day based on what she finds and what she likes, and you better be there to provide that.”