Get to Know: John Harrington
States covered: Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island
Serta Simmons Bedding Company, Territory Manager, June 2005 to March 2019. Maintained direct relationships with key decision makers encompassing 25 accounts in Eastern PA and Southern NJ. Developed strategic account plans, market and competitive analysis, pricing, merchandising, sales training and advertising strategies.
Mattress Man Sleep Centers, General Sales Manager, August 1985 to June 2005. Oversaw operation of 12 sleep shop retail stores across Northeastern PA and Southern NY focused on direct to consumer sales. Held responsible for onboarding and training of new sales team personnel. Managed over 40 employees across multiple departments, including sales, warehouse management and delivery personnel.
Bachelor of Science (BS) Social Work, Lock Haven University, Lock Haven, PA
Two-time Paul Harris Award from the Rotary Club of Wyoming, PA. Three term President of the Club.
Rotary Club of Wyoming, PA, Harvey’s Lake Yacht Club (Past Commodore)
Total years of experience with the independent channel/retail
14 years as a manufactors representative; 20 years working in a retail store.
What motivates you to get up and go to work for the Independent retailer every day?
Being able provide support and help independent retailer grow their business is key. Seeing retailers implement strategies that lead to them being successful is very fulfilling.
Tell us about your role at NMG.
Communicating the value of all the NMG business services and implementing the marketing programs is vital. Working with independent retailers is rewarding, especially knowing they appreciate the support we provide.
Why did you want to come work at NMG?
Having worked for a vendor and attended many of the PrimeTime conventions, I saw the power of what the group does for their Members. Plus, I had the opportunity to work with NMG members and staff during the show. Everyone seamed happy and very helpful. I knew from my experiences from PrimeTime, if I ever had the opportunity to join the organization, I would.
Why do you think NMG is the best buying group for Independent retailers in today’s climate?
Having worked here for the past year, I truly believe the group puts the Members best interest first. Management listens to the Members and they stay open minded and are very transparent. Our goal is to put the Member in the best position to be successful.
What is the most important project you are working on right now, and why?
After everything that has happened with COVID-19, the Membership needed our support. The most important project that we had was communication. There was so much information that needed to be sent to the Membership. The project of communicating PPP loan process, adding chat, COVID-19 message landing pages and ecommerce solutions to websites was vital. The company still has not stopped; now we are letting everyone know about the road ahead and the way to reopen safely and successfully.
What is your favorite memory from your time at NMG?
August 2019 PrimeTime Dinner at the World War II Museum in New Orleans. I had the opportunity to have dinner with Members in the main dining area. There was a great band playing music from back in the forties and there were vintage WWII Airplanes hanging from the ceiling. It was a great night, everyone really enjoyed themselves.
What do you like most about your job?
Being able to learn more about the different industries and business services that are covered by the group. There is not a day that goes by that I don’t learn something new and grow as a business professional.
What else do you want people to know about you and NMG?
I believe in giving back to the community; helping the underdog is rewarding. The ability to enjoy life with family and friends makes me very happy. I like working out in the gym, bike riding and golf.
Nationwide Marketing Group works on behalf of thousands of independent appliance, furniture, bedding, electronics, specialty electronics, custom installation and rent-to-own dealers helping them grow their businesses and thrive on their own terms. With more than 5,000 members operating some 14,000 storefronts, Nationwide Marketing Group is the largest buying, marketing and business support organization of its kind, representing billions in combined annual sales across the membership. For over 50 years, the organization has remained committed to the independent channel, empowering members with the scale, sophistication and efficiencies they need to compete while delivering the unmatched business intelligence, tools and resources required to win in an ever-changing business environment.