As part of the Retailer Excellence Awards (REAs), Ivystone’s Evelyn Julian was named 1 of 3 finalists for the Sales Rep of the Year Award. As part of the REAs, Gifts & Decorative Accessories asks retailers to submit their favorite sales representative to be considered for the Sales Rep of the Year Award. We had the pleasure of doing a Q&A with Evelyn to learn more about her, what she loves about her job, and more.
How long have you been with Ivystone?
I started with Ivystone January of 2002, so 19 years.
What is your favorite part of your job at Ivystone?
I know this sounds cliche, but I’ve worked with the same customers for many years, and I consider them friends. I’d like to think they think that of me as well. When I go into appointments the first part of the meeting is really just catching up with an old friend before we get down to business!
What do you love about working with retailers?
Even though retailers are in the same “occupation”, each retailer has their own unique way of doing business. One boutique gift shop can do their own business very differently from another boutique gift shop, but both doing it successfully. I find it very interesting that some retailers can be very successful with social media, while others use a different method for reaching their own consumer base. I learn so much about our industry from my retailers.
What is a fun fact about you?
I grew up near the Chesapeake Bay in Southern VA and my first job, while in high school, was working on a clam boat, measuring & counting the clams the captain caught. I had to be at work at 4:30 AM…I lasted less than 2 weeks!
Why did you become a rep?
I had sold software for a number of years before I came to Ivystone. As much as I loved the sales aspect, I just didn’t like the fact of not seeing certain customers again. And frankly, it was so technically detailed.
Our business was very different when I first came on board and what enticed me at the time was thinking how much fun it would be to sell products that I love to use myself. Our business has definitely become more technical now, but the core of what we do is still what I love the most and that is working with retailers face-to-face and knowing who they are and what they’re about.
What is one thing you hope never changes about the company?
Ivystone has always been like family. We had merged with Drummer’s the year before I came on board and I thought the company was so big, being in the North East of the country only. We really knew each other and were friends. I truly feel that Ivystone has that same common ground in each region. I feel that the Dallas, Atlanta, and Las Vegas shows are family reunions in a sense!
What excites you for the future of Ivystone?
The beauty of this company is the ability to keep growing, asking “what’s next” whether it’s technically, expanding with vendors both big and small, while maintaining the integrity of why we are all here. It comes full circle and I’m so incredibly grateful to be working with such an amazing Company of Family!