It was destiny—rather than desire—that first led Len Pesko to the world of footwear and accessories. 30 years on, he has been instrumental in the success of some of your favorite global brands. Co-owner/founder of ModernPulse.net we catch up with this industry mover and shaker to talk career, inspiration and life in the fast lane.
How did you get started in footwear? As a buyer at Macy's many years ago, I was asked to transfer into the footwear division. I was honored, as footwear was a select area. When I politely said thank you but I would like to stay where I was, the response was that this was not an option. This was the start of my footwear career nearly 30 years ago. I quickly made some very good contacts and friends and became a student. I began to love the product and the industry.
What does an average day look like for you? Currently as an owner, an average day can be endless, as can days worked in a week. As we are a global business, and deal with countries all over the world, it is not uncommon to be on a Skype call in the middle of the night my time as it could be the middle of the day in the foreign country. Executing work that is an ongoing from consultations on a specific topic for financial institutes that want a professional opinion about many issues brands, global sourcing and much more. Also evaluating projects that come across our desks on a daily basis. Each day I make sure that I am keeping current on the issues that effect our industry. By attending seminars, webinars and reading current topics I am able to be as current as possible on many prevalent things.
What duties are you responsible for? Bringing in viable opportunities where we can help our clients as well as executing business and financial aspects for our clients. If we utilize our vast professional network of people and services, I will stay involved to offer further support and help in the project. This can be business, analytic, financial, pricing products, sourcing, operations, PR, Social media and much more.
What do you love most about what you do? I love helping our clients. Whether it's teaching the the basics of the business, structuring their company and the needs that are associated with running a successful business, evaluating an established business and making worthwhile suggestions and even being part of the decision making process. I also love that I am constantly learning each day and after all the experience that I have accumulated, I feel that I am a very good and worthwhile student which only helps our clients even more.
What qualifications do you need to be great at your job? Among the obvious qualifications, the ones that are sometimes overlooked is being, what I call, a loud listener. Also being able to delegate and oversee projects at the same time is a key thing for success. You need to have a vision and a plan which are two different things. Also being a good communicator is vital.
What have been some highlights so far in your career? I have many highlights but one that stands out—and that I am very proud of—is there are at least six people in my industry that worked under my tutelage that have gone on to hold significant positions in the industry. I am proud of this and them.
Thought-provoking, controversial and awe-inspiring, welcome to the wonderful world of performance artist Marnie Scarlet.
Known for their eclectic designs and fantastical collaborations, Irregular Choice has done it again with their new Mickey Mouse & Friends collection.
Inspired by the celebrated Teva’s silhouette, the Brazilian footwear brand launches Melissa Connected.
This season Christian Louboutin takes a trip back in time to the swinging sixties. Psychedelic colors and free-spirited shapes pave the way for a sensational season.
Amidst the Fuori Salone at Milan Design Week 2017, Brazilian footwear brand, Melissa Shoes, has unveiled the Melissa FEM.IN.INE Collective: an art exhibition featuring two innovative installations in collaboration with Italian female artist Chiara Dynys and Francesca Pasquali.
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Malvados will have you dreaming of warmer weather with their new Summer Campaign Video featuring Madi Louch.
Referencing subdued romance, WANT Les Essentiels unveils its Injection collection.
‘Lille Elskling’ is Norwegian for little darling and the idea behind the latest Elskling collection from A. ANDREASSEN.
They came, they saw, they partied. Here's a round up of all the action from the Las Vegas Convention Center’s show—FN PLATFORM, WWDMAGIC, SOURCING @ MAGIC and WSA @ MAGIC.
Next week (Feb 21-23) the footwear industry heads to Las Vegas for FN PLATFORM. From foot massages to technological innovations, we find out what's in store from those in the know.
Luxury shoe designer Giuseppe Zanotti has partnered up with Jennifer Lopez for a highly anticipated capsule collection of footwear and accessories.
Welcome to the wonderful world of Bernd Serafin Thaler; where the heels are high and the rules were made to be broken.
Committed to honoring the "cobbler and the craft," BED|STÜ's approach to footwear creates shoes that are as individual as those who wear them.
When asked to list some of the shoe designers who inspire us, Julia Kaldy immediately came to mind.
Sit back and relax in these conversation-worthy Rocking Chair shoes from Kobi Levi.
Created using stainless steal and leather, these Bridge Shoes from Art and Design graduate Naomi Hertz, push the boundaries of footwear design.
It's time to summon a little Amazonian strength, what better way than with these amazing heels from Italian footwear brand Conspiracy?
Thirty years ago, Vivienne Westwood unveiled her SS85 collection entitled, Mini-Crini featuring the Rocking Horse Ballerina shoe. It was a turning point in fashion.
London footwear designer Michael Azu, talks innovation, design and the allure of expansion.
Fall in love with the latest collab: Melissa X Jason Wu ankle boot.
Check out the winners of the FN Platform 2016 Glass Slipper Awards.
We get a sneak peek at Safa Sahin's latest jaw-dropping collection.
Leslie Gallin, UBM Fashion Group's President of Footwear on what to expect from FN Platform NYC.
Technology meets fashion with Silvia Fado's latest design, Ray of Liberty heel.
Explore the darkly whimsical side of footwear with designer Anastasia Radevich.
We catch up with Albanian-American designer Elona Appleby of James Carletons.
Portuguese footwear brand Guava have released their Miami collection
What are some of the misconceptions of what you do? When people learn about the vast services that we can provide , they are surprised that we are so involved in a very highly professional way in the different aspects.
What advice would you give to those who want to work in the footwear industry? As I conduct seminars in many locations around the world, I have some standard advise to my audience. It does not matter what industry you are entering. This advise will apply to all. You must do your homework. Become an expert and learn the industry that you are about to enter and keep learning. There are no easy industries and there are no shortcuts. Footwear has its own challenges that are unique. I would strongly advise that you need to be obsessive in becoming an expert.