Congratulations! You’ve beat out the hundreds of other retail job applicants and landed the all-important interview. Now what? How do you ace the oh-so-specific retail interview questions and actually land the job? Keep reading to find out.
Know about the company you’re interviewing for – and I don’t mean just knowing that they are a company that sells clothes – but research the company so you can demonstrate knowledge and passion for their brand. If the interviewer asks you what you know about the company specifically, check out this blog to help you out.
Know their customers:
A company like Oakley will likely not have the same customer base as Forever 21. Demonstrating your understanding of their customers and the industry will earn you valuable points.
Know their competitors:
Learning who their direct competitors are will help you improve your ability to sell and differentiate the brand’s product line when talking with customers. Interviewers love to see that you’ve done your homework.
Visit their store:
This is a great way to observe the sales process and customer interactions. At the interview, you can point out observations you’ve made, but keep them positive! You should be prepared with a few ideas. This kind of proactive approach will show that you’re an employee who will add value right from the start.
Your attitude can directly correlate with working performance. So, it’s no surprise that companies want people with the right mindset for the job – and nowhere is that more critical than customer-facing jobs like in retail. Don’t forget to be sociable, conscientious, and relatable throughout your interview. Those are vital characteristics retailers look for.
We’ve all heard it before: how you look is the first impression you make. That is especially true when you’re representing their brand to customers. It is not to say that you should go into an interview decked out in clothing from the company, but rather, wear something that reflects the company’s overall fashion style. More importantly, though, don’t wear a competitor’s brand that is conspicuously labeled. That’s a huge no-no. When in doubt, veer on the conservative side or stick with business attire.
For the ladies:
For the gents:
In most interviews, you will be asked a few common interview questions before company-specific ones. Practice your answers in advance to ensure a smooth and confident delivery.
Tell me about yourself.
Here is when your elevator pitch comes in. Keep it focused and short, ideally within one minute. Mention a couple of expertise highlights from your professional experience that has led you to this opportunity. You can also throw in a personal tidbit, mention a few of your passions, let your interviewer get to know you!
What makes you suitable for the job?
Identify the work you’ve done previously that fit the role in front of you. Emphasize your strengths and propose ideas to show how you will add value to their company. Examples help them easily picture you as a future team member.
Describe a time when you had a demanding customer. How did you handle it?
Here the interviewer really wants to know your thought process in a stressful situation, whether you can keep your composure, think dynamically, and all the while still delivers excellent customer service. So go ahead and give a clear description of the situation by describing the circumstances, the actions you took, and the outcome – which ideally meant a happy customer in the end.
Finally, don’t forget to prepare some questions to ask the interviewer. Here are some items that show you’re engaged and genuinely interested in the role and in the company.
Master these 5 tips, and you’re well on your way to acing your retail job interview. Anxiety and shaky nerves will be a thing of the past as you say hello to your new job in retail. You’ve got this! If you land a job, let us know!
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