It's a Retail Job Swap!

Levi Strauss & Co.
July 13, 2016

Change the scene and suddenly a familiar job becomes a whole new experience.
Two talented Levi’s® retail store managers based out of Europe scored the opportunity to swap lives and store jobs for a unique three-day learning experience courtesy of the company.
The winners – Madeleine Loos, manager of the Levi’s® franchise store in Sandvika, Norway, and Anne-Sophie Charlier, manager of the Levi’s® store in Liège, Belgium – had the opportunity to learn about cultural differences in European shopping habits, as well as share ways of working.
Here’s what Madeleine and Anne-Sophie had to say about their experiences.
Madeleine Loos
I’m 24 years old and originally from Stockholm, Sweden. I now live in Norway and I’m the store manager of the Levi’s store in Sandvika. All the Levi’s stores in Norway are owned by the same franchise, so it was an amazing opportunity to go to Liège in Belgium and see how they work in an owned-and-operated Levi’s store.
What I learned was that while there are some differences, there is much more that is similar. The Liège team was open, welcoming and friendly, and very knowledgeable on products. In my opinion, that is exactly the service and quality our brand lives and breathes. Just think how lucky our customers are to meet such nice and talented people in our stores!
And despite not speaking the local language, I managed to sell four pairs of jeans and five tops to a female customer. It was quite a challenge to sell jeans with only your body language (and a tiny bit of help from the French-speaking staff) but I was proud to have succeeded! I really enjoyed my time on the job swap; it was a real privilege to meet co-workers from another country and to see that the Levi’s® brand holds itself accountable to the same standards, wherever you are in the world!
Anne-Sophie Charlier
Hello, I am the store manager of the Liège store in Belgium. Winning the opportunity to swap jobs with Madeleine in Norway was a fantastic experience, and I had an amazing three days learning about how our franchise partners in other parts of Europe do things. The answer? Not that differently from how we do it. We share the same brand values, the same collections and, crucially, the same approach to customers.
Yet that doesn’t mean that some things aren’t different. In Liège, for example, there are normally at least two to three of us in the store during a shift, whereas in Norway, its mostly just one person doing a lot of multitasking at high speed!
But when it comes down to it, what was clear is that really, our attitudes and expectations are the same, and we are all aligned in our desire to provide the best retail experience to customers that we can! This is a trip I will remember for the rest of my life.