A large portion of the workforce is made up of retail workers. When thinking about working in retail people tend to overlook the dynamics of such a work environment. Many standards held by such businesses are often discouraging to a newcomer, I have five tips that are just common sense, but I feel are often overlooked in the retail industry.
- Don’t Get Comfortable
It is easy to want to have a nice, even-paced routine in your work environment. Retail is not the place for that. The environment of retail changes on a fluctuating pace, you may have a display built one day and have it torn down and put all the way across the store the next day. It is important to go into this industry with the mindset that your environment changes rapidly and to be ready for anything.
- Be Flexible
Although we are often given a specific title in retail employment, it is imperative to be trained in multiple areas of the operation. This not only shows initiative, but allows for a more seamless flow throughout the retail environment. While it may seem like a burden being pulled in different directions because of this, you gain more skills and knowledge are and more likely to be thought of when promotions come around.
- Punctuality is a must
Being on time is always important, but, essential for the retail workplace. Consistently being on time shows dependability. It is also key to be on time for routine functions of the store to go on such as: cash-counting, freight replenishment and just allowing for the other employees the leave on time. Something as simple as being punctual can speak volumes to your supervisors.
- Strive for speed and accuracy
Whether it is cashiering, performing customer service on the phone and sales floor or inventory control in the back of house, time is money. The faster you can help a customer the happier they will be. You cannot sacrifice speed for quality, though. Make sure to take the time to listen to customers so that you can meet their needs the first time. In the back of house, it is essential to solve problems fast and assure that all inventory is accounted for and stored away correctly and safely.
- Safety is always #1
Be fast and accurate, but nothing trumps safety in the retail workplace. It is very important that all possible slips, trips, and falls are addressed immediately for customer and employee safety. No matter what your position may be, you must always be aware of safety concerns and not treat them as if someone else will take care of it. Everything you do ultimately comes back to customer service, a safe store does not go unnoticed.