Most of you already know Steve Pruitt, the founder and Senior Consultant of Blacks Retail Analysis and Blacks Consulting, from his regular Ask The Experts column here at MR-Mag.com. He’s offered us guidance (and soothed our jangled nerves) on everything from the crisis in Ukraine, to concerns around COVID, to dealing with virtual buying events. He’s the “secret weapon” of many successful retailers and we’re proud to have him on our MR Advisory Board.
Steve Pruitt began consulting with retailers in 1978 and has since worked for stores across the country, providing expert inventory planning, consulting and strategy services. “The best part of my job is working with retailers – they tend to be a creative and optimistic group. Since the industry is constantly changing, they have to keep adapting.”
Among the key lessons he’s learned over the years: “That there’s always a new opportunity lurking just around the corner. You just have to be open to it.”
Asked about the future of menswear, Steve is of course an optimist. “Clothes will continue to allow men to express themselves as individuals, perhaps more than ever before. Profits will grow and margins will increase as merchants find ways to customize and become more unique. Another emerging trend I see is Single Sourcing — this is when the merchant designs, sources and sells the product. This is the best way to provide small runs of merchandise for a specific consumer.”
When he’s not consulting, Steve enjoys playing guitar, reading, listening to music and exploring the great outdoors.