When visiting our Sioux Falls showroom, you’ll see some new faces: Mahlander’s welcomes two new Lighting Consultants to our sales team.
Alisha and Kristen have joined the ranks, filling places previously held by recently-retired staff.
“We’re so happy to have Kristen and Alisha in the Mahlander’s family,” says Sales Manager Rosie Kindt. “We appreciate their fresh ideas, energy and cheerful personalities.”
Starting within weeks of each other during early fall 2021, the duo has dived in to new endeavors, like attending the South Dakota Interior Design Expo this fall and continuing to keep the sales floor looking beautiful (and seasonally appropriate!) as new merchandise arrives.
Alisha and Kristen join veteran Lighting Consultants Diane, Nancy and Rosie in Mahlander’s effort to provide a stellar experience for all of their builders and clients. Both women have already made great strides in learning the industry from top to bottom, and having the seasoned experts as mentors has eased the arc of their learning curve substantially.
Alisha is no stranger to great design! Born and raised in Sioux Falls, she moved to Brookings to attend South Dakota State University where she earned a bachelor’s degree in interior design with a minor in Studio Arts. After graduating, Alisha worked in furniture sales for a while. She’s excited to make the shift to lighting sales, since she has a passion for all phases of home design.
Alisha enjoys working with the wide range of clients she encounters in the showroom and meeting their needs.
“Every one of them has a different story, a different idea and a different project,” she says. Bringing those ideas to life with a beautifully-appointed space is super satisfying and provides ample opportunity to work with different styles and aesthetics.
While she loves all that variety, Alisha’s favorite projects are whole-house projects. She loves the challenge of a large, cohesive (but not cookie-cutter!) project. And she does all she can to help clients through the experience so it’s fun and easy instead of overwhelming.
“Something I’m always telling customers is it’s often easier to pick out your biggest fixture first and build from there,” Alisha advises. “Typically it is easier to build from a large fixture, such as a dining room light, versus a pendant or sconce.” (Great point!)
Outside of work, Alisha is a busy woman! She and her husband have been married since 2019 and have a fur baby – a seven-year-old Vizla as well as a one-year-old little boy. She loves spending quality time with her family and includes hunting and archery among her hobbies.
Kristen has always called Sioux Falls home. She’s a native of the city and also a Lincoln High School alum. She’s right at home among the fixtures, accessories and decor items filling the showroom. Kristen studied art, interior design, and retail merchandising in college and has always had a knack for design. That innate talent is such an asset when helping others plan their space.
She also spent some time in jewelry sales, which she feels fits right in: “After all, lighting is the jewelry of the home!”
Kristen loves seeing the variety of light fixtures available and helping customers complete the lighting plan for their entire home.
“It is fun to combine different styles and looks together to create a design that fits the customer’s vision,” she says. Finding the just-right pieces for a client’s home is her goal. That’s easier for everyone involved if clients do a bit of homework.
“Have measurements with you, even if you are in the ‘just looking to get ideas’ stage,” Kristen says. “When you fall in love with something, you want to be sure it will fit correctly in the space.” (Good advice!)
When she’s not working, Kristen keeps busy with home and hobbies. A recent first-time homeowner and newlywed (as of September 2020 and May 2021, respectively), Kristen spends a lot of time sprucing up her own place. She also enjoys seeing movies, working on her art, playing board games, traveling, and shopping for those gems one can find in thrift and pawn shops.
Stop in to meet our newest sales staff and check out the latest seasonal displays, new merchandise and benefit from their design expertise. They’d love to help!