Jennifer Cyra– Executive Consultant
Jennifer Cyra is an experienced strategy consultant, a retail and consumer products industry specialist, and a veteran global executive who has worked to transform businesses for over 25 years. As Executive Consultant for The Executive Edge®, Jennifer works with senior leaders and their teams to develop strategies and identify opportunities to accelerate growth, increase profits and deepen customer loyalty. Jennifer effectively engages client stakeholders across companies and works to develop custom implementation plans with clear processes tailored for the client’s specific business needs, bringing strategy to life through execution that delivers rapid results.
Experience and Expertise
Jennifer’s professional experience includes strategy, product management, mergers, integrations, international business, vendor management, pricing, contract negotiations, and private brands. Prior to working with The Executive Edge®, she advised large and small companies ranging in size from a Fortune 200 retailer to a single store in downtown Chicago. She is known for delivering sales, profit growth and innovation paired with deliberate and consistent execution. Jennifer is an advisor with a proven record of designing systems and processes that improve business results while building capability across people and teams within organizations of all sizes.
Jennifer’s key areas of expertise include:
- Facilitating business transformations through strategic vision and execution
- Designing organizational processes that improve efficiency and grow profitability
- Managing complex project plans including post-merger integrations
As Senior Vice President at Office Depot, Jennifer developed the merchandise integration strategic business plan to deliver more than $70 million in cost synergies following the merger with OfficeMax. Jennifer understands global companies, having led impactful profit growth initiatives for the international markets of Europe and Canada worth over $40 million in savings to the company during her time with Office Depot.
Responsible for a multi-billion P&L as SVP at OfficeMax, she led category strategy for the Retail, Ecommerce and B2B channels, and led the private brand and global sourcing business unit including two sourcing offices in Asia. She also served as a nominated member of the corporate compliance committee. Before joining OfficeMax, Jennifer was Vice President-GM for Sears Holdings Corporation and has over 20 years of apparel category experience.
Jennifer is a member of the Presence Health Community Leadership Board for Chicago Northwest and serves on the Board of the Illinois Diversity Council.
- “Jennifer’s exceptional strategic thinking and strong analytical skills allowed her to quickly organize a complex project related to improving profitability. She exemplified professionalism at all times and was effective in communicating with and instilling confidence for the project with the C-suite executives. The project delivered rapid results ahead of schedule and ended up exceeding initial targets, delivering substantial economic value to the company.” Executive Vice President, Office Depot
- “Jennifer was effective in leading a strategy project requiring tremendous change management during a very transformational time at Office Depot. She understood how to navigate cultural differences and gain alignment within the organization while working in Canada and Europe.” Senior Director, Office Depot
- “Jennifer’s presentation was packed with relevant and useful information that could be put into practice immediately. She is an engaging facilitator who knows how to keep you wanting more while injecting humor and fun in the learning.” VP, Global Human Resources, Women’s Leadership Conference Attendee
- “Jennifer's hard work and dedication to my store on the Magnificent Mile turned the business around in a tough climate. She developed simple, customized forms for financial tracking and inventory tracking, and completed a full analysis on my processes to improve performance, saving me money and time.” Manager, Tribune Company
Honors and Awards
Jennifer received the Glass Ceiling Award from the National Diversity Council in 2016, recognizing her achievement in paving the way for others in corporate America. She was also named a “Woman Worth Watching in 2012” by Diversity Journal, a distinction intended to recognize exceptional leadership and career achievement.
Education and Professional Associations
Jennifer holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she is currently a member of the Board of Visitors for the School of Human Ecology. She is a member of International Women’s Forum, a global professional association, and Fashion Group International Chicago chapter.
More About Jennifer
A running and fitness enthusiast with a passion for advancing women in leadership, Jennifer volunteers as a mentor for the Women Unlimited LEAD program and spends her spare time training for half-marathons. She lives in Chicago.
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