Jennifer Williams is the sales manager for Sobremesa, Greenheart Shop’s line of fair trade tabletop and home decor items. She serves as the main point of contact for our wholesale customers around the country, finding new customers and selling the line at trade shows, and working with various rep groups to reach new customers.
On Wednesday, August 24, she was in New York City to attend New York Now, a biannual wholesale trade show featuring handmade gifts, decor, and apparel. Read on for a peek into her day…
6:45 am: I’m up and getting ready for the day. I’m not much of a morning person, but I always try to be positive. There’s always a silver lining: I’m visiting New York for the first time!
8:00 am: We are on our way to Javits Center, the venue for New York Now. It’s about a 15 minute walk from our hotel to Javits. On the way we stop at a local deli and grocer and we pick up a quick breakfast and our lunch to eat while at the show.
10:00 am: We’ll spend the next 4 hours at the show, meeting with new and existing customers, sharing about our products, and creating relationships with customers. I just love interacting with people. The teacher in me wants others to know the amazing stories of how our products come to be and how their purchase helps the artisans who make them.
2:00 pm: Today's the last day of the show, so everything wraps up early. After the last customers come through our booth, we take a moment to eat lunch and change our clothes. It’s tear down time! This can be a slow or a fast process, depending on when our packing crates are delivered to our booth. Today, we were lucky and they were delivered relatively quickly. This allowed us to get our whole booth broken down and packed up quickly. I have so much fun setting up and tearing down our booth with Merideth [Lacina, Greenheart Shop’s assistant director]. We are both very good at improvising quick fixes and changing our displays on the fly. I love the creative process of working with tools and setting up the booth - it's a process that includes lots of planning ahead of time with the whole team.
6:00 pm: We leave Javits Center and, because we finished our work early, are able to stop by the hotel and drop off items, change our clothes, and have a snack before we head back out into the city for a Broadway show. I didn’t expect to be as emotional as I was at the show - as the first scene started and the music and singing began, I started to cry. It was a powerful moment for me, as I was a vocal music teacher in Iowa for 13 years. I was thrilled to be at a Broadway production, enjoying a passion of mine - MUSIC.
10:00 pm: We’re walking back to our hotel after a wonderful Broadway show and a late dinner at a local diner. I’m reflecting on my beautiful day. I get to do a job I love with a wonderful team and I get to engage our customers while sharing stories about our artisans and products. But tomorrow I head home. I love the work I’m doing, but I’m excited to get home to my husband, Jerrod, and our fur kiddos, Katie and Harvey.