In August of 2011 I started as an intern at Sole Supremacy. I was living at home still at my parents while going to school. I was in my last year of undergrad at San Jose State University and I needed to figure out what I wanted to do as a career. Like many out there, I had absolutely NO idea what I wanted to pursue. I knew that my friend Derek who I grew up with playing basketball, owned a sneaker business so I asked if I can intern for him. I loved being on social media like everyone else and saw that at the time Sole Supremacy could have used some presence from being on there as well. I just wanted to find my niche and learn how the business ran.
I started by taking random pictures at the shop and posting them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Little did I know that Sole Supremacy already had somewhat of a following online. I started using twitter and we had maybe 50 followers. My knowledge for Jordan’s at the time was pretty much none. I knew which number Jordan was what but didn’t know the color ways or the nicknames. I noticed that we would always have a table stacked with used shoes waiting to be cleaned and put on eBay. DLew had me go through them and select a few to post on Twitter. Every day I would ask DLew “yo what are these called?” and post them on Twitter for X amount.
My office as I like to call it was a 2-and-a-half-foot filing cabinet that I placed my laptop on. I sat on a metal folding chair too at the time. Hey, it was a start. I did a bunch of random stuff at the shop when I first started. I just brainstormed anything and everything that might possibly work. DLew always gave me the freedom to just run with it. I did stuff like canned food drives at the shop during thanksgiving. If you brought in a can or more you would get $10 beans off your purchase. I did a shoe drive as well where we encouraged people to get rid of their beaters or shoes they don’t wear to give back to the ones who could use them. I did giveaways for reaching a certain amount of followers, random things like that. It helped boost my confidence that I was actually contributing to a real business, which in a way I kind of was.
This trend picked up pretty fast and we were able to move shoes quickly that way. By the time we moved to our 2nd location I had my own “specials” section, where we sold what I like to call “worn heat” or mainly more sought after sneakers. I felt pretty good because I had my own little rack, own corner desk, and a REAL desktop computer. If my coworkers TPN or X needed to move some personal stuff quickly they would just have me post it up on specials, tweet it out, and in a matter of days it would usually sell.
I had a valuable experience as an intern at Sole. I learned how a business was ran and got hands on experience of applying things I learned in school or just ideas that I thought would work. For young readers out there I really recommend interning or even volunteering in an industry that you have a passion for pursuing.
Notes: Few random pics from the first Sole shop, DS Bin Jordan 5s for $650 and DS Space Jam’s for $425 was what we were selling these at the time on Twitter.