Marc Saffer, Chief Information Officer of J.Crew
Marc Saffer, CIO of J.Crew
brand seems much larger than its roughly $2 billion in revenue would suggest.
One of the reasons the 30 year old retailer seems larger is that it has always leveraged catalog and Internet channels creatively in addition to its store presence.
That said, its information technology was deemed as being in need of an update when the current chief information officer, Marc Saffer, joined the company three and a half years ago.
That much was clear to him after a long interview process.
Once he joined, much of what he did in the early stages went against typical practices for CIOs who are new to a company and who find themselves leading a department in need of transformation.
Saffer has been a CIO at four major retailers, and his experience has given him confidence that his approach yields results.
Instead of moving fast in developing his plans, he moved deliberately, working with colleagues across divisions to ensure his decisions would gain the buy-in of his colleagues in IT and his peers outside of the department.
was also respectful of the plans of his
predecessor, not quickly tearing them up and building an entirely new plan, recognizing that it might alienate some key colleagues if he
were so insensitive.
also waited to make decisions on staff changes in lieu of quickly firing some members and replacing them with colleagues from his
made sure he
knew each of them well before judging them.
has been rewarded for deliberating in this fashion with a successful tenure to date, and loyal colleagues within and outside of the IT