PB Careers: Big Lots – Director, Product Design & Development

PB Careers: Big Lots – Director, Product Design & Development

Big Lots · Columbus, Ohio, United States

About Us
One Team. One Goal! Big Lots associates are part of a team dedicated to our mission of delivering Surprises in Every Aisle, Every Day! We hire people who will flourish in our fun and fast-paced environment. Our associates are encouraged to try new ideas, make decisions, and take on greater responsibilities. Their energy, enthusiasm, and dedication to our customers are the major factors in our incredible growth.

Develops and brings to market products sold within the Company’s Owned Brands portfolio. Establishes and communicates product trend guidelines in conjunction with trend team for Owned Brands products to other Merchants, such that coordination across multiple Divisions can occur. Leads product design, development and manufacturing functions for Owned Brands products. Collaborates with Owned Brands executives to develop merchandising strategies to improve Owned Brand market share and penetration.

  1. Works directly with the merchandising executive leadership team to define the merchandising strategy for Owned Brands.
  2. Responsible to cross-divisional merchandising teams for definition of product needs by category and the range of product to be designed and developed.
  3. Studies the competitive landscape across multiple regions in order to understand product trends, assess direction of competitors, and to develop product trend guidelines, merchandise offerings, and price points, in conjunction with the trend team. Shares product trend guidelines with buying teams.
  4. Establishes the creative vision and builds a merchandising plan by season to support the Owned Brands strategies and achieve stated sales, turn and margin goals. Partners with merchandising, sourcing, packaging, quality, planning, allocation, and operational resources as needed, in order to execute merchandising plans.
  5. Works to measure, understand and communicate Owned Brand product sales metrics and customer response. Adjusts merchandising strategies as needed.
  6. In partnership with sourcing, fosters relationships with manufacturers and vendors responsible for creating Owned Brands product. Develops a network of manufacturing and product development contacts to support product design and development.
  7. Designs, develops and approves Owned Brand prototypes, pre-production samples, product, and packaging. Manages and approves color, style and trim details with vendor post order placement.
  8. Leads Owned Brand product line review with other merchants and business partners.
  9. Travels globally to manufacturing and other facilities to understand merchandise production, packaging, and logistical requirements.
  10. Responsible for achieving annual sales, margin, and turn goals for Owned Brands products.


  • Bachelor’s degree in marketing or a related field required.
  • Minimum of ten years of factory direct product design and development experience required, executive experience preferred.
  • Strong business and financial acumen, strategic focus, and experience with influencing Executive Leadership.
  • Experience in developing complex merchandise categories and categories with large sales volumes.
  • A team player possessing great drive and excellent organizational, negotiation, and marketing skills.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication and organization skills.
  • Motivated and self-starter, willing to take on new challenges and learn every aspect of Owned Brand product development.
  • Able to work as part of a team to achieve common goals.
  • System capable in spreadsheet, word processing, and data analysis tools.

We will consider for employment all qualified applicants, including those with criminal histories, in a manner consistent with the requirements of applicable state and local laws.

Job Category: Merchandise Buying


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Christopher Durham is the president of My Private Brand and the co-founder of The Vertex Awards. He is a strategist, author, consultant and retailer who built brands at Delhaize-owned Food Lion, and lead strategy and brand development for Lowe’s Home Improvement. He has consulted with retailers around the world on their private brand portfolios including: Family Dollar, Petco, Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, Metro (Canada), TLW (Taiwan) and Hola (Taiwan). Durham has published five definitive books on private brands, including his first book, Fifty2: The My Private Brand Project. In 2017, he will debut his newest book, Vanguard: Vintage Originals, a visual tour of innovation and disruption in private brand going back to the mid-1800’s. Dynamic in his presentation while down to earth and frank in his opinions, he has presented at numerous conferences, including FUSE, The Dieline Conference, Packaging that Sells, Omnishopper and PLMA’a annual trade show in Chicago. Durham lives in Charlotte, NC with his wife, Laraine, and two daughters, Olivia and Sarah.