Damage prevention is many things. But at its core, loss prevention is about the people who work every day to protect customers, employees and products.
In this exclusive series LP Magazine takes a close look at the people behind loss prevention and how they tick. Where did you start? What are you most proud of? What is your favorite food?
Here we speak to Joe Coll, Vice President of Asset Protection Operations and Strategy at Macy’s Inc.
LPM: Tell us something about yourself.
Joe Coll: I was born and raised on Long Island; My parents came to the US from Ireland when I was 16. I am married and father of 3 children (2 girls and 1 boy).
LPM: What was your first job?
JC: My first job was working at a pizzeria and making dinner in the kitchen. I was 15 years old and really had no idea how to cook anything – I feel sorry for the many customers who asked me to cook their dinner.
LPM: What did you see as your career in your freshman year of high school?
JC: I fully expected to be a cop in either NYC or Long Island.
LPM: What are some of your favorite foods?
JC: I’m a simple eater; My favorite food is always a good steak and some mashed potatoes.
LPM: What is your favorite TV show?
JC: Anything I can watch on Netflix. If I had to pick one, it would be Breaking Bad.
LPM: What are the top three items on your bucket list?
JC: I’m retiring and spending my days working on wood projects, providing a path for my three children to achieve their dreams, and traveling the world.
LPM: Favorite sport?
JC: It would have to be soccer, then baseball; I’ve loved the NY Jets and NY Mets my whole life and sadly passed that tradition on to my kids.
LPM: How did you come to LP?
JC: Like many others, I certainly have no intention of working in retail asset protection for the past 23 years. I was very curious about Retail AP and thought until I landed on my career path it would be exciting to get into this aspect of retail.
LPM: What keeps you up at night?
JC: The rise in violence related to retail thefts – I hate reading the stories of my AP teams at stores injured in arrests.
LPM: What would you change about your career if you had a magic wand?
JC: Early in my career I wished I had taken more risks and been vulnerable.
LPM: What is your general management style?
JC: I tend to instill confidence in my team and give them the same opportunities I had to be successful. I foster an environment where you bring your authentic self to work and strive to create an inclusive and collaborative team with shared goals.
LPM: Tell us about a favorite boss.
JC: My favorite leader was just that – he gave me the room to grow, the courage to fail, the confidence to innovate, and the all-encompassing support for my team and myself.
LPM: What are you doing to keep up with current events and retail trends?
JC: I’m excited about the recovery in retail and brick-and-mortar in particular. Customers have shown that they don’t just shop digitally.
LPM: What do you look for when hiring a candidate?
JC: Passion, curiosity and solution orientation.
LPM: If you didn’t do this, what would you do?
JC: Certainly I would have gone into law enforcement.
LPM: How do you measure your success?
JC: Today I measure my success through the lens of my team, how they are set up to succeed and how they show up on a daily basis and continue to deliver.
LPM: What do you think about using mentors?
JC: Mentors are evergreen. I often reflect on advice given to me over the years and still rely on my mentors today.
LPM: What are the three most important things in building an LP program?
JC: Innovative thinkers, compassion and a competitive mindset.
LPM: What’s next for the loss prevention industry?
JC: Over the past 23 years, I’ve seen the industry evolve at an incredible rate, and I think we’re just getting started in the IoT space and seeing how LP professionals have incredible insights into how customers shop can win to be true partners increase retail sales.