Tough Search Ahead, as Steinhafel Era Ends at Target

Carol Spieckerman shares her insights with WWD on what type of leader Target needs in the wake of Gregg Steinhafel's departure.


“Target is ripe for a new direction and an infusion of new leadership and new thinking,” said Carol Spieckerman, president of New Market Builders. “The template for the types of people who would be good choices include Marigay McKee and Angela Ahrendts. The two women have the right-brain, left-brain, open-minded-but-minding-the-numbers type of balance. Someone from Amazon or Google or platforms that are expanding into a retail sensibility and that have the digital DNA could be good as well. Retailers hiring from consumer packaged goods companies is becoming yesterday’s model very quickly. It’s going more toward the digital space."

“[Target] is in the midst of playing a mean game of digital catch-up. In the meantime, Wal-Mart is really putting the pedal to the metal, and Target hasn’t fully awakened to the opportunity of leveraging its physical scale. One of Target’s top priorities has been to make sure online unique items are able to make their way into physical stores. It used to be that making sure online assortments matched in-store was important. Now, digital space is an endless aisle. Target is one of the few retailers that remains store-centric.”

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Article by Sharon Edelson with contributions from Arnold J. Karr, 05/06/14.

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