Each month, industry news media organization XBIZ spotlights the career accomplishments and outstanding contributions of Women in Adult. WIA profiles offer an intimate look at the professional lives of the industry's most influential female executives.
Jackie White joined CalExotics 20 years ago with a background in banking and the skills and desire to work one-on-one with customers. Now as vice president of sales, White plays a role in many facets of the company’s success as a collaborator involved in CalExotics’ advertising, new product development, private label and marketing, among other departments. Working side by side with CalExotics President and CEO Susan Colvin, White says she’s proud of her professional accomplishments as well as the camaraderie developed among the CalExotics and extended to clients and industry colleagues. In this month’s WIA Woman of the Month spotlight, Jackie White discusses her role and aspirations as part of the veteran CalExotics executive team.
Being flexible is important, and knowing when and how to adapt to evolving trends has helped me professionally over the years.
What is your role and responsibility as vice president of sales for California Exotic Novelties?
I have the perfect job because I have the unique opportunity to work with all the departments here at CalExotics. As the vice president of sales, my main focus is on our customers and sales. I work with an awesome team who make my job seem effortless — most of the time — just kidding! We work hard but the important thing is we work together.
I also get to “dabble” in other areas: advertising, new product development, private label and marketing, to name a few. It’s great because I get a full perspective of our business. I also travel twice a year with Susan Colvin, CalExotics’ president and CEO. We go to China and personally oversee the production of new products and to make sure our quality standards are adhered to. I also attend many industry trade shows and travel globally to meet with customers.
How did you get into the business and how has your previous experience prepared you for your current position?
Like many people in the industry, I was introduced to the industry through a friend of a friend. Now 20 years later, here I sit!
I’ve always been in a customer-oriented position. I love working with people and getting their direct feedback. There is nothing better than the relationships I have formed with people over the years. Believe it or not, I actually have a background in banking. I’m great with numbers. I think that’s what helps me as a sales person, too.
What challenges have you confronted in your career in sales and how have you overcome them?
The ever-changing marketplace has certainly been challenging over the years. Being flexible is important, and knowing when and how to adapt to evolving trends has helped me professionally over the years. Trying new things is challenging, but what is life without a challenge?
What is the most rewarding part of your job?
The people I am fortunate enough to know and become friends with. I will always be a people-person. I know it sounds corny, but it’s true! I love the team at CalExotics, I love working with Susan, and I love our customers and all the wonderful people who work in our industry. Don’t let anyone tell you differently, we have some of the most friendly, hardest working, most dedicated personalities of any industry.
What is your personal motto or mantra that you live by?
My personal mantra is: “Treat people like YOU like to be treated.” It is simple, but true!
What career accomplishment are you most proud of?
I am most proud of being at California Exotic Novelties for 18 years.
What are your plans for 2012 and beyond?
At the beginning of every year I make a list of new goals. You know what’s funny? One of my goals this year was to do more press interviews. Really it was! And here I am, doing one! Thank you XBIZ and WIA for this opportunity. I’m honored that you chose to feature me in the Woman of the Month section.
Additionally I have the professional goal of maximizing sales. One way we are doing this is by reaching out to customers and becoming their “merchandising partner.” This is our companywide goal to work even harder than before to help our customers become successful on the retail level. We are developing merchandising strategies with them and finding ways to help them increase sales. Since I love people and truly desire to help others, this is not only a goal, but something that gives me personal satisfaction.
I also plan on relaxing just a little bit more. A nice vacation someplace warm with fruityumbrella drinks might be in my future ….