The Culture of Small Medium-size Luxury Fashion Brands aligns with the Seismic Shifts in the Industry; Employees Perspective: Integrity, Trust and Betrayal., Laurine Grere Osborne

The Small Medium-size Luxury Fashion Brands (SMLFB) niche is an essential source of design trends and innovation that drives the fashion industry’s overall growth. Across the western hemisphere the fashion industry is confronted by challenges such as record-high retail closures, a rise in e-commerce, emergent technology and a growing call for sustainability from investors and consumers. SMLFB Career Professional Employees have become concerned about their role in the new economy. The overall purpose of the current research is to identify the strategic course of action needed for engendering change in the SMLFB work culture in order to meet the challenges facing the fashion industry. The
specific objective of the research is to include the employees’ perspective in our understanding of SMLFB work culture. Therefore, this study investigates the culture of SMLFB and its ability to meet the challenges facing the fashion industry. In order to meet the research objectives, a combined qualitative and reflexive method research design was utilized. Qualitative semi-structured individual in-depth interviews (IDIs) with seasoned career-level professionals in SMLFB provided uncomfortable results. Findings revealed a general atmosphere of distrust due to management’s broken promises and hypocrisy; the lack of open, respectful and productive two-way communication between career level employees and upper management; and management’s lack of appreciation and support of employees’
contributions. However, the findings also provide actionable insights for reforming SMLFB work culture by focusing on successfully adapting new socio techno systems through careful planning; ensuring positive communications, and building authentic employee and management relationships characterized by mutual trust and respect.

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