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Exclusive: <i>Couples Therapy</i>'s Dr. Orna Guralnik Knows You're Watching Her

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<i>Couples Therapy</i>'s Dr. Orna Guralnik Knows You're Watching Her

#ltigtCouples #Therapyltigt039s #Orna #Guralnik #You039re #Watching

In the second episode of this season of Showtime’s enthralling documentary series Couples Therapy, one partner in a couple, Cyn, remarks that kids, like dogs, are drawn to her wife, Yaya. Their session is just starting, and the show’s resident psychoanalyst, Dr. Orna Guralnik, responds by asking Cyn what she means by that. She says she’s okay with it, but Guralnik pushes her to say more, asking, “But what do you make of it?” Cyn describes Yaya as motherly, adding that it’s in her nature, it’s a good thing, and that there’s nothing wrong with it. Guralnik counters that perhaps Yaya’s motherliness, as Cyn sees it, might be getting in their way as a couple. Cyn’s face lights up with a realization she didn’t previously reach: She feels mothered by Yaya. As Yaya responds by asking Cyn if she’s treated like one of the kids, Cyn turns to Guralnik and says, “Orna, you don’t ease into this stuff, man.”

The hit show, which premiered in fall 2019, follows a cast of couples on their 20-week therapeutic journey with Guralnik. It exhibits a commendable vulnerability in its participants as well as uneasy confessions that may cause second-hand embarrassment in even the most empathetic among us. In that way, the show accurately depicts therapy, save for the potentially millions of viewers tuning in to observe a couple’s most intimate accounts of their relationship. But amid the varying personalities and stories shared by each couple in each season—and rest assured, some are truly memorable—the outstanding, if reluctant, star of the show is Guralnik. Insightful, thoughtful, and a master of reading people and their motives, she navigates even the most difficult conversations with a firm, fair-minded, and approachable empathy. I sat down for a conversation with her in a café in Brooklyn to talk about the one subject she rarely broaches on the show—herself.


Where did the idea for the show come from?

The originators of the show, who are the directors and producers, their whole idea was to create a show that closely follows what a therapeutic journey really is. Their whole idea was to actually not intervene at all, but to somehow create a situation where what happens in real therapy and good therapy can be captured. So it’s the opposite of anything sensational, the opposite of anything produced, and that’s what drew me to the project. I had a lot of trepidation in the beginning and disbelief, like ‘How could this ever work?’ But the idea was amazing.

Courtesy of SHOWTIME

What were you apprehensive about in terms of being a therapist on television, albeit in the docu-series genre?

From what I’ve seen in film and in the bit of TV that I’ve seen, when people try to depict what therapy is like, it often cheapens it and makes it not anything I can relate to as an analyst. A lot of it has to do with how therapy works and the concept of transference with people projecting onto the personhood of the therapist. And that’s one of the engines that pulls people in on TV—imagining things onto the therapist. But often what is imagined in real therapy, and then in how people relate to TV figures, people project a lot of fear. So these therapists are often represented as super exploitative of their patients or not interested in their patients, or either they’re too withdrawn and they fall asleep, or they’re over invested and want to sleep with their patients. Or they’re doing it for other selfish reasons. People project a lot of fears onto this mysterious object of the therapist. And on the show, you have the opportunity to offer a kind of blank screen.

What’s most challenging about your work and then also being filmed doing your work on TV?

What’s challenging about being a psychoanalyst is that it’s a profession in which you commit to helping people carry the burden of their suffering. So you’re engaging with people suffering—and not only suffering, of course, but also their creativity and other things. But there’s also a lot of suffering everyone who does this kind of work carries with them when you’re committed to witnessing and carrying the burden of suffering.

In terms of the show, one of the challenges for me is having to put on makeup. Tending to my appearance in a way that I don’t do in my regular life, believe me, that is a serious challenge. But aside from that, it’s a big responsibility to represent my profession and do the work on demand. In my regular practice, there’s a feeling that there’s time. If this session doesn’t work out, there’s another session. Here, we have a max of 20 weeks, and I’ve got to show up fully every time.

“Being a psychoanalyst is a profession in which you commit to helping people carry the burden of their suffering.”

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Something that is always obvious to me is that we’re getting to know you, in a way, through your occupation, but we still don’t really get to know you. You come across as resisting the celebrity of it all despite being someone the audience enjoys watching.

You know, on the show, they wanted to get into my life in the same way they get into the couples’ lives, which seems to me like a completely natural inclination for a documentary filmmaker. As much as I might be interested in telling my story, and whether maybe I will, I think for the sake of people that I’ve worked with and people that I will work with, I have to keep a certain level of anonymity to give people the space to not be burdened by my story. So, when I’m interviewed, the same way that when they asked to film, I said you don’t want that—you don’t want that for your audience, you don’t want that for the couples, and I don’t want that for my patients. I don’t want to be a celebrity, I don’t believe that that’s what’s useful.

People talk about how my interventions are so good and I might have my own personality that’s in there, but a lot of what people are seeing in terms of how I intervene and what I do with couples is my training. I’m a psychoanalyst. I’ve trained for this for 20 years. Basically, what I’m trying to say is I think that sometimes people’s interest in me as a person is kind of a misunderstanding of what’s actually going on.

Can you tell me if there are parts of your upbringing that have influenced your decision to do this work?

Yeah, one of the things I’ve come to realize is really relevant to my work is that I was born here, moved as a child to Israel, then lived in other places in the world, and then came back here for grad school. So shifting between cultures and between languages has been a very important factor that primed me particularly to work with couples. Being in a couple is all about difference, and each person being deeply embedded in their own experience and having to contend with the fact that there’s a different way of seeing things that comes in the form of the other person. There’s always some kind of clash of culture, of ideology, of background, of loyalty, of legacy, that each person in the couple brings into the room. Shifting between cultures and between languages primed me to be able to understand differences, and to shift my empathy and identifications between the partners and between the other factors that are influencing each of the partners.

orna guralnik

Courtesy of SHOWTIME

How does difference manifest in our communications in relationships?

Communication is a complicated thing, right? Most couples come into therapy saying they have problems communicating but what does that really mean? It can mean certain things like not listening well or not articulating one’s thoughts openly or clearly. It can be getting emotionally overexcited or shut down, so those can show up in the way people talk. But ultimately, problems in communication are just the tip of the iceberg that are really reflecting what people are trying to communicate about, which is difficult. Often people have profound differences between them that they don’t know how to navigate. So it shows up as if it’s problems in communication, but it’s not really the communication that is the problem. The problem is honestly facing certain differences or disagreements or different loyalties. And that’s where these deeply embedded differences between people need to be addressed.

Watching the show, it sort of contradicts a widely held belief certainly in this country—sometimes backed by data—that the two major reasons couples have conflict are sex and money. Are those issues really about something else entirely? Or, perhaps let’s consider when Cyn reveals that she’s no longer attracted to Yaya—is that not simply true, or is it possible that something else is happening?

Sex and attraction are often arenas where other things are negotiated. For example, I’m writing about this couple who are arguing about whether the woman should buy a slushie or not, she wants to buy a slushie. And he’s saying, ‘We’re in the red in the bank, Do you really need a slushie?’ So it looks like it’s an argument about money, right? But it’s actually an argument about class. I mean, let’s unpack it. She comes from serious deprivation and is being told she can’t buy a slushie. Meanwhile, he comes from very steady generations of a very comfortable middle class. In his mind, he’s thinking ‘What’s the problem? Just don’t get a slushie right now.’ So it’s not really about money. It’s about class for them. It can also be about gender, politics, and power.

You’re talking to a psychoanalyst, nothing is just the thing.

One of the things I found intriguing right from the first season of the show was how you handled Black partners and Black couples and their dynamics. Anecdotally, there are numerous complaints of Black people seeking therapy with white professionals that at best reveals a gap in intercultural communication and understanding. Meanwhile, you seem to get it. I’m thinking of Dale and India this season, the former of whom is a Black immigrant, and of course you have a diverse group of fellow analysts shown on this season that come to your aid. How do you navigate these difficult conversations?

I’m a white therapist right? So, how white am I exactly? Because I spent age seven to 20-something years in Israel, and in Israel my first identification is with a family of Holocaust survivors. So it’s a very different victim identification and trauma contextualized in an Eastern European particular kind of history. Then I move back here, and here I’m a white person, and I have to take on the history of white people with slavery. It’s not my personal history, but it comes into me because I’ve lived here long enough and interacted with people long enough and now I understand I am now embodying that privilege. So these shifts and being conscious of them and taking them on and not refusing them is important.

“Problems in communication are just the tip of the iceberg that are really reflecting what people are trying to communicate.”

I understand what it means to be kind of infused and identified with a certain culture and then moving out of it. I both know how to identify with it and also how to step out of it. In terms of understanding the Black experience, I’ve been working for long enough and I’ve seen different types of Black patients. The world comes to my office and people talk to me. So it’s a combination of this—and where my history does matter—is understanding these shifts between cultures. It primes you to understand that you don’t understand, so you need to listen and not assume. But it’s also my particular area of interest—socio-culture and how it affects the individual. I write about race, class, gender, and that’s my thing, and the directors were really interested in that aspect of the show too—how all of these ideological dimensions play out in private.

Finally, what is your hope for the legacy of the show?

I guess a few things are important to me. One is for people to understand what it means to negotiate difference, that a lot of it is like looking inward and thinking about unconscious dimensions. Another is for people to have more curiosity about the unconscious. There are a lot of unconscious forces that are running through us that include childhood and trauma, intergenerational stuff, and culture. And then again, for people to understand that being an analyst is a really serious responsibility that people don’t take lightly. I’m not different from any of my colleagues, people take their work super seriously. Hopefully that will dispel some anxiety that people have about engaging in therapy.

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This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

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Exclusive: The Best Rum: A Guide For Pirates And Drink Snobs Alike – TalkOfNews.com

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#Rum #Guide #Pirates #Drink #Snobs #Alike

A pirate’s drink of choice is not one to sip quietly in a wing-back chesterfield with some low-key jazz on in the background. Unlike a good whisky you have as a nightcap, or the gin you order when you’re pacing yourself, rum is a party-starter. It’s a holiday drink. It’s what your mate brings back from the bar when he’s trying to make sure you don’t call an early night.

Despite the drink’s versatility, the best rum can sometimes be hard to discern.

Of course, rum isn’t only appropriate for nights when you’re three sheets to the wind. It has the same complexities as those other spirits, there’s a similar breadth of quality on the shelves – and just as rich a history to get into as you knock them back.

Rum – a spirit both quaffable and inebriating – is the best example of alcohol pioneers’ industriousness. Sugar cane farmers in the world’s tropics in the early 17th century had a problem. To make sugar to sate the world’s growing sweet tooth, it required crushing sugar cane, boiling the resultant juices and leaving them to cure in pots. This process yielded molasses as the waste by-product and, by god, they knew what to do with it. Thus, good rum was born.

A History of Rum: What Is Rum Made From?

In its purest form, rum is made by mixing molasses with the solution skimmed off the sugar cane juice after it is boiled and fermenting it. Many twists on the process have developed in the proceeding 400 years, but in essence, this method remains.

As it was produced such a distance from the world’s key cities of consumption, to bring rum to market required sailors to get it there. While in transit, it’s fair to say that these marine men developed a taste. Safer to drink than sea water and certainly more fun, rum became synonymous with the navy, pirates and just about anyone who has ever hoisted a sail.

It wasn’t until 1970 when the Royal Navy ended its daily rum ration, when it was deemed ‘inappropriate to operate ship’s machinery’ after receiving the allowance, which equated to two double shots. Fair enough.

When you consider that Navy Strength required rum to be at least 57% ABV, it’s a good job that breathalyzers have been a relatively recent innovation.

Image Credit: iStock

The early sailors were a resourceful breed. The expression ‘proof’ in terms of alcohol strength came from these ships, where they would mix rum with gunpowder. If the gunpowder still ignited when lit, it was ‘proof’ that it was 57% alcohol or higher.

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They also knew the value of morale in the workplace. Even Blackbeard – the most fearsome man-manager to sail the Seven Seas – knew how to keep productivity levels high in taxing times. “Such a day; rum all out,” the pirate mused in his log. “Our company somewhat sober; a damned confusion amongst us! Rogues a plotting. Talk of separation. So, I looked sharp for a prize and took one with a great deal of liquor aboard. Then all things went well again.” Middle managers, take note.

The Best Rum Brands

Sometimes, it’s better to take your purchasing advice from those who have spent a lifetime dedicating themselves to the cause.

“There’s so many good quality rum brands out there. Generally, I would look for brands that are not scared to talk about their production techniques and focus on the quality of the liquid rather than the marketing,” says says Damian Williams, manager at Opium bar in London’s Soho.

Foursquare Distillery

Asked about his favorite rum brands, Williams recommends, “anything from the Foursquare distillery in Barbados, particularly their FOURSQUARE branded limited editions.” Foursquare Rum Distillery is located on a former sugar plantation whose origins go all the way back to the early 1700s. For five years in a row, Foursquare won ISC Rum Producer of the Year. Their rums are aged for ten to 16+ years, and it’s no wonder they’re at the top of our list.

Best Dark Rum - Foursquare
Image Credit: Foursquare

Plantation Rum

Of Plantation Rum, Williams says, “the barrels are hand selected from across the Caribbean and finished and bottled in Cognac. It’s a great range which showcases regionality in rum production.” With rums up to 69% proof, be sure to drink responsibly.

Plantation
Image Credit: Plantation

Diamond Distillery

Another favorite of Williams’ is the El Dorado line from Diamond Distillery. “El Dorado rum from Diamond Distillers in Guyana are excellent,” he says. One of the things that makes this rum brand special is that all the rums are produced with 100% sugar from local sugar farms, giving them a unique fruity flavor.

Diamond - Best Rum
Image Credit: Diamond

Rhum Clement

Rhum Clement offers a lot of variety in their line, and you can enjoy it from prices between $27 and $150.”Most of the aged Agricole rums from Martinique [are excellent],” says Williams. “Particularly Rhum J.M and Clement.”  For the top shelf stuff, expect ‘an exemplary degree of expertise in every stage of production,’ thanks to their AOC Martinique designation, boasts their website.

Rhum Clement
Image Credit: Rhum Clement

Smith & Cross

“Smith & Cross Jamaican rum is one of the absolute finest spirits in any category ever made, in my opinion.” High praise from Williams. And rightfully so. Smith & Cross makes rum the old-fashioned way: no added sugars, or chill filtration. Notes of caramelized banana, exotic fruits and spice give this rum our stamp of approval, too.

Smith & Cross
Image Credit: Smith & Cross

Mount Gay

Finished in charred bourbon casks, Mount Gay rum is rich and intense, but still smooth. Founded in 1703 in Barbados, Mount Gay is one of the oldest names in the book, and in the past 300 years, they’ve mastered the craft, making some of the best dark rum. “My go-to for a decent all-rounder would be Mount Gay Black Barrel; dry but not excessively so, and it works excellently as both a mixer and a supper,” says Mihai Ostafi, head bartender at Oriole in East London.

Best Dark Rum - Mount Gay
Image Credit: Mount Gay

Appleton Estate

Aged in the heart of Jamaica, Appleton Estate rum’s first distillation occurred in Nassau Valley way back in 1749. The combination of Jamaica’s lush climate and the natural springs from being in the valley give this rum its naturally sweet flavor. Appleton Estate offers rums aged between eight and 21 years, so by the time some baby reaches legal drinking age, the next batch will be ready.

Appleton - Best Rum
Image Credit: Appleton Estate

Flor de Caña

You don’t have to be willing to spend the price of your monthly car insurance bill for a decent bottle of rum. Flor de Caña offers an affordable selection of rums, aged four years. Extra dry and light, it’s one of the best rums for mixing.

Types of Rum - Flor de Cana
Image Credit: Flor de Cana

Trois Rivieres

French rum known for being smooth and full, with aromatic notes of seawater, Trois Riveres offers a truly authentic rum-drinking experience, bringing you back to rum’s roots: the ocean. Lights went on for this rum brand in 1785, but their sugar plantation dates even further back to 1660, making it one of the oldest and most respected companies in the game.

Trois Rivieres
Image Credit: Trois Rivieras

Bacardi

It’s not top shelf stuff, sure. But Bacardi has earned its spot on our list nonetheless. Bacardi’s founder, for whom the brand was eponymously named, used only three ingredients in the original batch: molasses from sugarcane, a unique strain of yeast, and spring water. Founded in 1862, Bacardi is somewhat of a newcomer in the world of rum-making. Still, if you’re looking for an affordable bottle you can find pretty much anywhere, Bacardi is a solid choice.

Bacardi - Best Rum
Image Credit: Bacardi

Havana Club

Spanish rum brand Havana Club was born in Cuba. By 1850, the country provided a third of the world’s sugar, making it an ideal breeding ground for some of the best dark rum, too. Get a bottle of the low-shelf stuff for as low as $19, but the Maester aged rum will cost you a pretty penny ($200+).

Best Dark Rum - Havana Club
Image Credit: Havana Club

Wray & Nephew

Jamaican rum from one of the world’s top-selling, award-winning brands doesn’t sound all that bad. Some folks say that 90% of rum sales in Jamaica are of this brand, so if you haven’t gotten your hands on a bottle, you’d better do so now. Founded in 1825 when John Wray opened up a successful bar, The Shakespeare Tavern, in Kingston, Jamaica, Wray & Nephew is a true heritage brand.

Wray & Nephew
Image Credit: Wray & Nephew

How to Tell Good Rum From Bad

Like any other spirit, the best rum has nuances that are important to understand before you take the first sip. “When tasting, you want to consider the clarity of the liquid. You want a liquid that’s bright and shiny, not cloudy,” says Ostafi.

“In terms of nose, there are lots of different types of rums: the agricoles will give you a grassy, tequila-like nose; molasses-based rums will have a nose ranging from tropical fruit to dark chocolate. When you taste it, think about the taste as a process. The complexity of rum usually increases with age, so you’re going to notice that difference if you taste a young rum before tasting an older rum.”

Then consider what style of spirit you usually enjoy, be that sweet, strong, smoky or smooth. “Sweet rums that include molasses will generally have a honey-like flavor. Zacapa is a great starting point for this,” says Ostafi. “Or for something else, the rums from French colonies are generally dominated by aromas that will remind you of tequila. These rums have a soft and complex taste with a seductive structure.”

Zacapa
Image Credit: Zacapa

Types of Rum

First, you need to understand the difference between white rum and dark rum. Next, the easiest way to start understanding the spirit is to look at the country where it is produced.

“They are mainly classified into English, French and Spanish styles – named for the colonial ruler of the country where they are from,” says Damian Williams, manager at Opium bar in London’s Soho. And most rums have a rather shady colonial past. Rum produced in the West Indies helped fuel the slave trade, wherein it would be exchanged for slaves in Africa, who would then be shipped back to tend plantations.

White Rum

This is the one you probably first encountered, mixing it with Coke or as the base spirit for mojitos or lots of easy-pour cocktails. “White rums tend to be younger and a little brighter in flavor, whereas darker tend to be a little more cask-y, depending on aging technique,” says Christian Binders-Skagnaes, Chief Rum Seller at Burlock in Mayfair.

“Filtration can change a lot though; a dark rum can be filtered through charcoal and taste much younger though still have hints of a richer body and age.”

Dark Rum

In the broadest possible terms, you can go by the epitaph that the darker the color, the longer the aging. However, this isn’t the case when grabbing a quick bottle at a corner shop.

“Typically, most cheap rums are not aged for any significant length of time, with cheap dark rums like Captain Morgan heavily colored with caramel. Conversely, many premium ‘white’ rums like Flor De Caña Extra Dry are aged for up to four years and then charcoal filtered to remove the color,” says Binders-Skagnaes.

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The old adage of getting what you pay for rings true. If it’s a dark colored, top-shelf rum, you can generally be sure that you’re on the right track to drinking quality.

French Rum

“These style rums [Agricole] use raw sugar-cane juice rather than molasses. Aged Agricole rums borrow techniques from the cognac industry and are some of the finest rums in the world,” says Williams. Excellent examples of these would include Rhum J.M, Clèment and Trois Rivieres.

Trois Rivieres
Image Credit: Trois Rivieras

Spanish Rum

“These are nearly always made from the molasses. Spanish rums are generally lighter in body due to the four-stage distillation process they go through,” says Williams. “Aged Spanish-style rums often use Solera ageing – a technique borrowed from sherry production.”

Solera means ‘on the ground’. When it comes to aging liquids, the barrels are organized in rows from the ground up, with the lowest layer of barrels containing the oldest aged liquid, which is inevitably the most expensive. Examples are Bacardi, Havana Club, Ron Zacapa, Diplomatico and Santa Teresa.

Santa Teresa
Image Credit: Santa Teresa

English Rum

“English-style rums show a huge variety, but are generally heavier in body and richer in style,” says Williams. “Jamaican rums, Guyanese rums, Trinidadian and Bajan rums all have their own styles and a variation of this. They use pot stills and column stills, and are typically aged in American Oak former bourbon barrels. They often yield a deeper, smokier flavor.”

Some of the best examples come from Mount Gay (Barbados), Appleton (Jamaica), Wray & Nephew (Jamaica), Doorly’s (Barbados), Angostura (Barbados) and El Dorado (Guyana).

Doorly's - Good Rum
Image Credit: Doorly’s

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Exclusive: Adele Wears Stunning Schiaparelli Gown During Performance In London's Hyde Park – TalkOfNews.com

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Adele Wears Stunning Schiaparelli Gown During Performance In London's Hyde Park

#Adele #Wears #Stunning #Schiaparelli #Gown #Performance #London039s #Hyde #Park

On Friday night, multi-Grammy Award winner Adele headlined at London’s BST Hyde Park Festival, taking the stage in front of a live audience for time in five years. For the momentous occasion, Adele wore an absolutely stunning Schiaparelli gown. The floor-length black velvet dress had long sleeves with shoulder cutouts and a halter neck. It was cinched at the waist with a gold belt, and glittering fabric made up the skirt under the splitting bodice.

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The singer’s hair was swept into an elegant updo with a few delicate tendrils around her face. She was wearing star-shaped gold earrings covered in pearls, and a gold ring in a bow shape. For make up, she wore her classic cat eye liner with a some shimmering eyeshadow for a little more of a glam touch.

american express presents bst hyde park adele

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The night was an emotional one for Adele, and Page Six reports that she she was overcome before even finishing her first song.

“My God, I’m back at home,” she told the audience of 65,000 people. “It’s so strange to be in front of a crowd again. I get so nervous before each show but I love being up here.”

Adele’s set was two hours long and included her newer tracks “Easy On Me,” “Oh My God,” and “I Drink Wine.” But she was very attentive to the audience throughout. Many had stood out in the heat for hours to attend the show, and Adele stopped the concert four times for concertgoers who needed medical attention.

At one point, the music icon revealed that she was swearing black anti slip socks under the her gorgeous dress.

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“I was told it was going to be slippery so wore these just in case,” she told the crowd, before continuing on with the show.

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Exclusive: WWAKE Is Hiring An E-Commerce Sales Specialist In Greenpoint, Brooklyn (NY) – TalkOfNews.com

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WWAKE Is Hiring An E-Commerce Sales Specialist In Greenpoint, Brooklyn (NY)

#WWAKE #Hiring #ECommerce #Sales #Specialist #Greenpoint #Brooklyn

WWAKE is seeking a sales associate who is passionate about providing professional, above-and-beyond customer service. As part of our retail team, you’ll drive forward company sales goals and a positive, informed, brand experience for every client.

Responsibilities:
● Provide excellent brand experience, both written and in-person, for all customers through superior product knowledge, merchandise engagement, and informed advice.
● Developing client relationships and exceeding sales goals through above-and-beyond service
● Participating in clientele initiatives, including company training sessions, special events online and offline, and product launches.
● Maintain showroom and website appearance for optimal navigation of product
● Participation in general inventory management
● Order fulfillment, including processing and shipping orders
● Working tightly with the production team to provide accurate lead times and exclusive design opportunities for clients
● Provide holistic support to team members at all times

Requirements:
● Previous high-end sales experience, 2 years preferred
● Strong knowledge and passion for sales and a genuine interest in jewelry
● Availability to work a variety of hours, which may include early mornings, evenings, weekends, or holidays
● Ability to maintain a positive attitude and focus on customer satisfaction in a fast-paced environment
● Ability to multitask, while being attentive to customers and remaining flexible to the needs of a small growing business
● Quick response time, willingness to think critically, anticipate future chain of events, and pivot plans seamlessly
● Excellent communication skills
● Ability to work collaboratively with a small team is an absolute must
● Must be an independent worker who is eager to take on responsibility with a personal sense of accountability

Our ideal candidate is available full-time and available for immediate hire. Please email your resume and cover letter with the subject line “Sales Associate” to careers@wwake.com.


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