Customers are changing how and where they shop, and Best Buy is creating new ways to serve them.
Across the company, women leaders are guiding their teams through these changes — from expert advice online at our virtual store, to new store and supply chain operations that focus on customer needs within a geographic area and reduce electronic waste.
Meet three of the women using their previous experiences and knowledge to propel their teams into Best Buy’s next chapter.
After 11 years in sales, operations and strategy at Best Buy, Haley Hanes, omnichannel operations and services director, is using her experience and expertise to lead our new virtual store team. At the virtual store, Blue Shirts support customers online via live product demonstrations and answer questions about products and services over video, chat and phone.
What makes Haley so passionate about this work is the potential to help others who need online shopping convenience, such as busy parents. As a mother of two toddlers, Haley wants to create a smooth shopping experience from beginning to end without customers having to step inside a store.
“Since the pandemic, people have realized how important time is to them, and it’s really awesome to see the opportunity the virtual store has to connect customers to our experts and find the solutions from their own homes,” Haley said.
While the team is spread out across the country, Haley creates a strong culture by getting to know her employees and learning about their passions and goals. She prioritizes communication and connecting with her team to create an environment where everyone feels included and heard.
As the virtual store and sales team continues to grow, Haley has her sights set on enhancing the customer experience with digital content, such as unboxing or troubleshooting videos.
“This role is all about testing strategies,” she said. “It’s been fun to quickly grow and evolve this team while trying out new things.”
Experience Director Patty Nouri has been with Best Buy for 23 years, but she says she’s learned the most in the last 18 months.
That’s because she’s in a new role where she focuses on the people and performance of multiple stores in the New York market instead of a single store team.
“There’s a learning curve for sure,” she said. “But teams are working together so much more, and we’re able to tackle problems as a whole market versus a single store.”
She takes a holistic view of the market to help stores create a consistent experience for customers however they choose to shop.
Patty also uses her voice to mentor other women and share feedback with her leaders to make the workplace more inclusive. She wants to build up confidence in women employees and encourage them to go after opportunities to gain experience and grow their careers.
“When other women hear my story, they relate to the same fears and doubts, and it makes the possibility of career advancement more believable and doable for them,” she said.
Patty is proud how quickly she and her teams have been able to pivot and work differently over the last year. Resilience and adaptability will continue to be the skills that make teams successful in a constantly changing retail environment, she said.
“The flexibility in how we adapt and react to how customers choose to shop is critical,” Patty said. “That determines the future of retail.”
More product options, less electronic waste
Becca Meinz was only a few months into two new roles, mother and reverse logistics vice president, when the pandemic flipped the world upside down in 2020.
“It was messy, and it was so soon after becoming a mom,” she said. “But I’m really proud of how the whole team navigated the challenge.”
Becca and the team dove into strengthening Best Buy’s existing reverse supply chain processes to supply stores with products. More stores were trained on vetting customer returns and supply chain teams moved accepted inventory through the system to offer products where they were needed.
To help her team navigating these changes, Becca remembered what she learned from her previous mentors by building trust and encouraging vulnerability with her employees.
“I’m here to support [my team] however I can,” she said. “Personal, business, all of it — let’s support each other through it.”
Now three years into this journey, Becca is excited to continue improving these processes to support our growing outlet stores and contribute to the circular economy where tech products are given longer lives.
“We’ve built some interesting muscles hanging onto products and giving them new homes,” she said. “I’m excited to see how much bigger this can get.”