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Director of Product Design & Development, Hardlines, CPGP EMEA

Apply NowApply Later Job ID 800606BR Location London, England, United Kingdom Business Parks, Experiences and Products Date posted Jun. 09, 2021

Job Summary:

We are looking for an experienced Director of Product Design & Development for Hardlines to join the Consumer Products, Games and Publishing (CPGP) EMEA division in London. This is a full-time permanent position based in our office in Hammersmith.

Reporting to the Vice President, Regional Merchandising & Product Design EMEA, the Director will lead product design and development across all brands for EMEA, working with creative, category, franchise, and brand merchandising to ensure highest quality, consumer focused, trend-right product lines across all channels of distribution (licensing, flexible business models, vertical and wholesale) that build brand equity and meet financial targets


  • Lead the execution of product design and development for hardlines to deliver on business needs and strategic intent of category
  • With a focus on creativity and innovation, develop and deliver high quality, authentic storytelling products, which are scalable, and have longevity
  • Lead up-front trend point of view (POV) for hardlines in partnership with creative, and brand merchandising
  • Identify future areas of growth (with approval of VP) in each franchise and across product categories
  • Work with licensees to lead the development of consumer-centric product lines that are trend-right, deliver market-leading innovation, drive revenue and capture market share globally
  • Ensure that designs achieve great price/value for each tier of the value pyramid
  • Drive a product design strategy that ensures our products are market leaders that deliver on business strategies
  • Responsible for monitoring competitors, product innovations, and market dynamics to deliver trend-right product for each segment of the retail landscape
  • Direct product approvals that uphold the integrity of our franchises and deliver the highest price value
  • Work with licensees to design and approve market-leading product lines for the franchises
  • Direct execution against seasonal concept and vision for categories in partnership with creative, brand merchandising, and sourcing teams
  • Partner with studio, content providers, global creative and marketing teams to bring our content and intellectual property (IP) to life properly and with a consistent brand point of view across the globe
  • Monitor and maintain quality in colour, material, function and form of all products
  • Lead overall management of agency relationships
  • Regular review of systems and processes with the purpose of reducing administration and creating more creative time, ensuring efficient practice
  • Establish and manage high-level hardlines EMEA product to market (PTM) calendar anchored in Global PTM but with the relevant local nuance
Flexible Business Models – DISNEY DIRECT
  • Work in conjunction with the commercialisation team to drive Disney Direct from a product design and development point of view and ensure the right products are delivered to the markets each season
  • Lead the Disney Direct team to sketch, design and prototype items with factory and sourcing partners, ensuring all designs are in compliance with brand guidelines
  • Deliver designs that achieve great price/value for each tier of the value pyramid
  • Ensure innovation in product design and development to create best-in-class product
  • Lead the team to select and approve materials, colours and component parts for Disney Direct
Team Leadership & Management
  • Lead the team to build compelling stories through product design to drive brand vision and increase emotional connection with our consumers, whilst also building, developing and retaining best-in-class design talent
  • Lead team through ambiguity and change – consistently engaging with, developing, and influencing teams effectively to a build strong collaborative environment
  • Drive conversation and activities with sourcing to develop and cost the line, as well as with brand merchandising to create a product line in all activities, including key milestone meetings
  • Lead communication and collaboration with key franchise partners and cross-functional partners to drive execution and remove roadblocks
  • Manages operating budget for each category to meet financial targets
  • Maintain a strong point of view on consumer and trend and ensure that this is effectively communicated across stakeholders and management
Training and Professional Development
  • Operate with integrity, champion change and be a good ambassador for CPGP and the wider Walt Disney Company (TWDC)
  • Contribute to maintaining and enhancing the standard of training and development being given and encouraging participation so that everyone has the tools and resources to do their role effectively and efficiently

Basic Qualifications:

Experience required
  • Significant product development experience at leadership level
  • Experience in designing and developing hardlines product that resonates with consumers both globally and locally
  • Deep knowledge and understanding of licensing and experience working with multiple global and regional partners
  • Strong understanding and high level of interest of The Walt Disney Company consumer product portfolio
  • Experience working with large-scale, global retailers and partners to bring product designs to market for a variety of different consumer targets
  • Proven experience working, and thriving, in a matrix organisation
  • Experience in multiple retail and distribution models within the global market
  • Proven experience of leading, developing, and managing the performance of a creative team
  • Proven experience of building effective relationships, leading and managing change and collaboration across departments
Skills required
  • Leadership skills – skilled in leading through change and uncertainty
  • Skilled in building effective networks and influencing key stakeholders and achieving buy-in at all levels
  • Commitment to team engagement and development
  • Financial acumen
  • Ability to motivate and inspire a team and lead them towards a common goal
  • Demonstrable ability to lead a product design team in the creation of consumer-led items through the development cycle
  • Demonstrable ability to capitalise on market trends and consumer Zeitgeist to maximize value creation throughout the trend cycle
  • Demonstrable ability to create, leverage and scale innovation in consumer products
  • Strategic thinker with the ability to drive quality product design within financial Key Performance Indicator (KPIs)
  • Strong interpersonal skills and ability to collaborate and engage with a diverse audience, including but not limited to external partners and business owners, to bring product designs to life
  • Proven ability to think creatively to bring and infuse new ideas into product design and not be afraid to challenge the status quo
  • Demonstrated ability to lead the organisational and cultural change efforts needed to ensure new, innovative concepts, business practices, and technologies are fully adopted and integrated into the business
  • Cultural sensitivity and an understanding of local markets across EMEA
  • Computer literate including MS Office (Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint), Adobe and other design packages

Additional Information:

Flexibility for frequent UK, European or international travel may be required – Covid rules and regulation permitting.

Applications will close on 23 June 2021.

About Parks, Experiences and Products:

The Parks, Experiences and Products segment includes Disney’s iconic travel and leisure businesses, which include six resort destinations in the United States, Europe and Asia, a top-rated cruise line, a popular vacation ownership program, and an award-winning guided family adventure business. Disney’s global consumer products operations include the world’s leading licensing business across toys, apparel, home goods, digital games and apps; the world’s largest children’s publisher; Disney store locations around the world; and the shopDisney e-commerce platform.

About The Walt Disney Company:

The Walt Disney Company, together with its subsidiaries and affiliates, is a leading diversified international family entertainment and media enterprise with the following business segments: media networks, parks and resorts, studio entertainment, consumer products and interactive media. From humble beginnings as a cartoon studio in the 1920s to its preeminent name in the entertainment industry today, Disney proudly continues its legacy of creating world-class stories and experiences for every member of the family. Disney’s stories, characters and experiences reach consumers and guests from every corner of the globe. With operations in more than 40 countries, our employees and cast members work together to create entertainment experiences that are both universally and locally cherished.

This position is with The Walt Disney Company Ltd., which is part of a business segment we call Parks, Experiences and Products.

The Walt Disney Company Ltd. is an equal opportunity employer. Applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, colour, religion or belief, sex, nationality, ethnic or national origin, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, marital or civil partner status, disability or pregnancy or maternity. Disney fosters a business culture where ideas and decisions from all people help us grow, innovate, create the best stories and be relevant in a rapidly changing world.

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