July 2, 2021 – Atlanta-based executive search firm Pinnacle Search Partners LLC has expanded with the addition of Lori Ellis as retail practice leader. She has a particular focus on expanding the firm’s home furnishings practice. Before joining Pinnacle Search, Ms. Ellis was part of a national search firm. “As a trusted advisor to leadership teams, Lori delivers strategies and structures that facilitate scalability to support future growth,” the search firm said. “A testament to that success is the large number of companies and individuals from her long career that follow her today and ask for guidance and placement opportunities. Lori has the unique ability to match the skillset and culture fit between candidates and clients.”
Before joining the executive search industry, Ms. Ellis worked in retail, wholesale and manufacturing. She began her career in retail with The Limited and continually moved up to roles with increased responsibility at Bed Bath and Beyond, Century 21 Department Stores, DXL, J. Jill, Sleepy’s, Mattress Firm and Bedgear.
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Pinnacle Search is a boutique firm with global reach and specializes in matching top talent with C-suite to director level positions in finance, operations, marketing, sales, and human resources. The firm’s focus is middle market companies, private or private equity owned, in the consumer, industrial, manufacturing and retail space.
Evolving Retain Sector
These are revolutionary times for retail with COVID-19 having accelerated some fundamental trends across the sector. This has in turn created a fertile environment for the most able executives to set themselves apart and chart a course for a successful, digitally focused future, according to a new report by Melissa Reed, a consumer and retail partner lead with H.I. Executive Consulting (HIEC). “The past year has certainly rocked the retail boat and the ramifications are being felt widely, including a realization that the crisis has created great opportunities as well as challenges,’ she said. “These are right now being grasped by the sector’s most capable leaders and so in order for companies to take full advantage of the new retail landscape they must seek to invest in these sorts of individuals.”
There is no escaping the fact that it has been a tough time for retail, but some CEOs have also highlighted how invigorating it has been. “They have been able to think differently and to push through change at rapid pace,” said Ms. Reed. “They’ve also been able to initiate these changes without necessarily seeking board approval. Such actions have arguably been swept under the COVID-19 carpet.”
All retailers that have survived face challenges. Leaders have to accept the fact they might well be running an organization that is simply too big, with too many people employed across declining sales channels. “There are question marks over the futures of senior store-based and head office staff who have been on extended furlough,” said Ms. Reed. “Digital has replaced much of their revenues.”
“Despite the harsh backdrop as we entered 2021, there is no doubt that this year represents a period of great possibility,” concluded the HIEC report. “Fundamental to this will be investment in talent because only those businesses that have bold and forward-thinking senior people in place will be able to maximize this tremendous opportunity.”
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media