Brooke O’Reilly

Global Vendor Management, Staples
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What do you do for work? Give us a few reasons why you love it.
I work for Staples in Merchandising where I head up the Global Vendor Management team. My team is essentially the linkage between merchandising and finance, ensuring that the financials from vendor program agreements are interpreted correctly and reflected accurately within our company financials. We partner with merchants to understand “dead net costs” of our products after taking into account backend programs or volume rebates, etc.

I love the fast paced environment, dynamic and intelligent colleagues, inspirational leadership, and the “mechanics” of the job/work. It’s interesting and meaningful. My team’s successful execution of our top priorities has a substantial impact on the company’s financials and long-term success.
Your current company aside, name another company that you admire and explain why.
Watsi – A nonprofit that makes it easy to give money to those that need it. Great website and customer interface. You can see the results of your dollars spent, knowing you made a difference.

Where do you expect to be in 5 years?
Still at Staples. Just watch – it’s going to be an incredible turnaround for a company that invented an industry 30+ years ago. I may still be in merchandising, I may go back to finance, I may go to the front lines and help to lead a business unit. At Staples you can pivot in your career with support of management. It’s a big reason I stay.
Which is more important: talent or work ethic? Why?
Work ethic and I’d add integrity. You can learn the rest. You either have a strong work ethic or you don’t. No one can teach it to you.
Who are your role models or influences? Explain what makes them special.
My husband. He’s patient, kind, and brilliant. He’s also the most loyal person in the world. Shira Goodman (Staples CEO). She’s the real deal – a mother, wife, and incredible business person.
How do you want the world to be different because you lived in it?
My outside of work world: I want to have an impact, leave a legacy, where when people remember me they are proud of what I did and feel inspired by it. My work world: I want working parents to feel supported and to truly believe that they can do it all (on most days) and they have someone in their corner for support on the days they can’t. I want to be a part of as many people’s “villages” as I can.