Sabrina Trenell was a full-time single mother when the payroll company she worked for closed its doors and left her out of work. Luckily, her sister was working as a CVS associate when she met a third-party merchandiser who explained he loved his job doing continuity work at retail. Sabrina’s sister told her about the gig and had her reach out to her contact. That’s when Sabrina would make a career out of retail merchandising.
Sabrina had no training, however, the company “CPM” showed her the ropes, and Sabrina loved the work. “Continuity work was perfect for me at that time because the hours were really flexible and I could focus my attention on my daughter, Dominique, who was a teen at the time. Dealing with a teenage as a single mother was really, really, hard. The fact that I could work my own hours was great because it allowed me to be there for her.” Sabrina was a fan of the gig, and CPM became a big fan of hers, too, especially after they found out she had fell into a cement pit, dusted herself off and went to work at Staples shortly after the incident.
“I’m a phone head, and I was on a sidewalk in downtown Chicago trying to get to a Staples job, not paying attention and there was all this construction around. I heard someone yelling out, however, I was looking at my phone not paying attention. Suddenly, I fell into a whole pit of wet cement. I was so concerned for my phone I had my arm up in the air to save it. The guys pulled me out, hosed me off, and I was soaking wet. I ended up going to a Target nearby, buying a whole new set of clothes, throwing out the wet ones, and got to Staples to finish the work that needed to be done. I was just determined to keep going.”
It’s this kind of determination and effort that afforded Sabrina to move up the company ladder where she eventually became a District Manager at the company. When Apollo bought CPM in 2016, Sabrina went back to work in the field, however, this time she would start traveling and would eventually move from rep to Team Lead to Senior Team Lead to now Project Coordinator.
“I love being on the road, I love staying active. Now that my daughter is grown, I can do that, and I love being able to see the world.”
When asked what her favorite gig has been so far, Sabrina said, “Ace in Alaska! I got to fly to Alaska and work with the Ace Project Manager over there and that Ace was awesome, such a beautiful place. I also got to work one on one with the PM learning everything from Ace. It was one of the best experiences I’ve had.”
Since it’s women’s history month, I asked Sabrina what advise she had for working single mothers. “Think about your goals. For me, I always put my daughter first. I go out and work hard so that we can have the life we need. My focus is on her. Stay focused and work hard and you can achieve whatever you want to achieve. Retail merchandising is a great market. If you’re traveling it can be hard, though, being on the road. If you need flexibility, focus on continuity work. Just stay motivated.”
Thank you for telling a part of your story, Sabrina. We appreciate you and your dedication to our company! To all the merchandising moms out there, we salute you. Keep up the great work!