Divisional Vice President, Expertise

REI Seattle, WA

About the Job

What's cool about this job

REI has a unique opportunity to offer an unparalleled and differentiated experience in expertise. The epicenter of expertise has been our Green Vests, who provide customers at all levels with the knowledge they need to confidently choose the right products. Over time, REI has provided knowledge to customers via industry leading content, classes, guided experiences and customer service, among other touch points. With over 9,000 expert staff, REI has the largest team of experts in the outdoor industry and is a leading publisher of content.

Our opportunity around expertise is to develop new and enhanced products and services that enable customers to access the outdoors, building on our current foundation through the lens of membership and activity. Doing so will strengthen REI's ability to educate customers at all levels of experience, engage new customers and remove barriers that prevent a wider audience from enjoying the outdoors.

Reporting to our Chief Experience Officer, the Divisional Vice President, Expertise is dedicated to assessing our expertise opportunity (customer, business) through the lens of membership and activity. The scope of this role is significant. It will directly manage REI's Sales & Customer Service teams and will influence strategy across other areas, including Green Vest, Content, Experiences and Virtual Outfitting. This leader may also recommend and initiate acquisitions and new partnerships in strategic areas to build our expertise and learning portfolio.

This leader will think strategically, assess white space opportunities, create business plans, collaborate and provide thought leadership across the organization and execute by leading teams running and building expertise programs. This leader will need to be an entrepreneur who is able to drive product tests, learn and build new products and services.

At REI Co-op, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lives and exist to inspire and enable a life outside for everyone. To deliver on that promise, we are working with our 15,000 employees, 20M members and the broader outdoor community toward a reality where everyone has the opportunity to be themselves, to access opportunities and find their place in the outdoors. For us, that means:

  • Investing in work that removes the barriers people and communities face to getting outside
  • Delivering relevant products, experiences, and expertise to equip and inspire a new generation of outdoor stewards
  • Cultivating a workforce that reflects the demographics of the markets we serve
  • Leading the industry's efforts to welcome people and communities historically underrepresented into outdoor media and culture


Bring your passion and expertise

The Essential Leadership Behaviors required by the future Divisional Vice President, Expertise connect directly to the mission, the strategy and the quadruple bottom line that measures success for the co-op.

The Divisional Vice President, Expertise will do this by:
  • Evangelizes the expertise vision across the co-op and with their team
  • Leads with courage, inspires and drives innovation, takes considered risks
  • Understands and models product mindset
  • Coaches and empowers a high functioning team
  • Monitors customer and business metrics, reports trends, variances and issues, and takes appropriate action.
  • Leads the development and execution of the customer-focused strategy and vision for expertise supported by customer insights, competitive analysis, financial analysis and the co-op's strategy
  • Leads a large customer service team, balancing customer experience with budgetary constraints
  • Defines and develops business plans through the lens of membership and activity (run, cycle)
  • Views expertise holistically, as something delivered by customer facing teams as well as via digital content and experiences
  • Accountable for the performance and results of overall budget
  • Develops overall performance KPIs and analytics capabilities to measure the success of the expertise programs across touch points and report during monthly business reviews
  • Works closely with merchandising teams, retail operations, experiences, marketing/brand, digital/customer technology to deliver products to market
  • Proactively identifies and resolves strategic issues that may impair the team's ability to meet strategic, financial, and technical goals
  • Leads the Co-op Way and role model REI's Values in Action.




The Professional Qualifications and Experience required by the future Divisional Vice President, Expertise are imperative to the success of the candidate and the long-term success of the co-op.
  • Customer obsessed
  • Ability to lead adaptively through complex and ambiguous problems and situations
  • Executive presence: Ability to effectively communicate at executive level
  • Ability to work in a matrix environment with multiple business functions
  • Experience building business and financial plans
  • Analytical mindset and ability to synthesize complex information, connect ideas with data, and present in digestible, easy to understand format
  • Challenges the status quo, innovates, champions and manages change
  • Establishes trust and inspires others
  • Holistic thinker who views expertise and knowledge as something delivered through person-to-person interactions and digitally
  • Creates a strong, mutually supportive work spirit and culture where people can do their best
  • Uses business knowledge, product thinking and sound judgment in the pursuit of customer outcomes or the pursuit of business opportunities
  • Synthesizes insights from a variety of sources including feedback from others to reach sound business cases and decisions
  • Substantial experience within the retail / consumer, digital, or strategy/management consulting fields
  • Experience leading large teams
  • Undergraduate degree and MBA from a leading program are highly desirable.
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