Retail Jobs.. Love em or hate em???

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  • Hya,

    Just looking around work wise and wondered if any of you lot worked in retail, past or present??? Do you enjoy it?? do you hate it, if so why?? Is there any ££ to be made??? good points, bad points etc???

    Just need some advice from people who may have done this type of work in the past :)

    'You have not seen a real women, untill you have seen a beautifal hippy girl dancing bare foot in a field'

  • i've avoided it as much as possible coz when it's quiet it's boring and when it's busy you have to be nice to people you dont want to be nice to. theoretically.

    “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” -Mark Twain

  • Hi Moonpup :waves:


    I've worked in several shops a few years ago and I absolutely detested it. They were badly paid, customers were often horrible and having to listen to the same music tracks day in day out over and over drove me nuts. There were "sales targets" to reach, and awful co-workers.


    Thing is, I'm an introvert and can't deal with the public, I also struggled with the tills as my maths is so poor :o An extrovert sociable type of personality might love this kind of work though.


  • An extrovert sociable type of personality might love this kind of work though.



    Well i did have a very brief spell recentely at a record shop and spent a long time nattering to customers about star wars, how bad the xmas number one song was and how mama mia sucked!! Funny that we were trying to selll the stuff.ha

    'You have not seen a real women, untill you have seen a beautifal hippy girl dancing bare foot in a field'

  • My family ran a grocery store for years.....I wouldn't dream of working in a shop...the idea of serving miserable buggers like me is horrible...my sympathies to anyone who works on a checkout..it must be hell:rolleyes:

  • ive worked in countless amounts of shops. well, i probably could count if i tried... i can only remember 6 of them. one i was in charge of on my own sometimes, just me, myself and i. that wasnt so bad, i just ate the milky ways and drank the coke, that we were supposed to sell to the gaming community when they descended upon the shop to play cards... the sports shop was amusing because though my co worker and the supervisor didnt like me, the manager did and he used to send me down the arcade to get thorntons ice cream so he and i could watch the customers from behind the one way window and my gods he was funny. two toy shops, same brand but different stores - awful, absolutely awful, the surf club wa samusing but i was technically a gopher putting rigs together so it was more fun than just selling bacon butties etc, and virgin megastore... well, ours was so buzzing we got closed down before virgin went zavvi and went bust!


    pay has been piss poor and the hours have been demanding and you get used to buggery. not for buggery, but you might as well be.

  • The only way I could deal with working in a shop was to manage it. I get way too bored to do basic jobs so at least with management you can get your teeth into other stuff. Having said that....working in the Speaking Tree book shop in Glastonbury was quite different than most places and managing that was brilliant! However, after 2 years the number of intensely crazy and smelly customers did my head in. Now I reside quietly away in the office.....


    Money? Tends to be crap in retail unless you get into management which can be good or bad depending on what company it's with.

  • I've worked in retail for 13years.
    It wasnt something I had my heart set on doing but there ya have it. The money isn't marvellous, you meet some complete arseholes and it is bloody hard work, however, I have met some amazing people. I have 2 ladies in there 90's come and give me a cuddle and tell me about there life evertime they pass, there are amazing. I still enjoy what I do, even all these years on, but then I work in my own business. I would not do my job for anyone else, purely because of the pressures of bonuses and targets, and selling things you dont believe in.

  • Yeah, if I did it again it would only be in my own business.


    I worked in another book shop a few years back and this lovely man used to come in who'd been a fighter pilot in WW2. He'd been after a really obscure book for years that was written by someone that he flew with. I found it online in my own time and bought it for him - he was soooo happy and grateful. It's a really good feeling knowing that you've contributed towards that. So yes, working in a retail environment can be rewarding if you can stay focused on those special moments!

  • I would not do my job for anyone else, purely because of the pressures of bonuses and targets, and selling things you dont believe in.


    hear hear, this is the way i'd do it if i had to work in retail again, except i havent the foggiest how id start up.

  • lol i worked around car boot sales selling second hand junk no one wanted i use to love doing that especially around the summer time i lost my job for a few months so had to find money somehow signing on wasnt looked at to favourably in my area lol so i done house and garden clearences ornaments went well pressure wash them down first tho also car equipment aswell like speakers and house speakers stereo systems water butts compost bins flower pots bathroom suits lol you name it i sold it hehehe only thing i couldnt sell is baby stuff

  • I've worked in retail for 13years.
    It wasnt something I had my heart set on doing but there ya have it. The money isn't marvellous, you meet some complete arseholes and it is bloody hard work, however, I have met some amazing people. I have 2 ladies in there 90's come and give me a cuddle and tell me about there life evertime they pass, there are amazing. I still enjoy what I do, even all these years on, but then I work in my own business. I would not do my job for anyone else, purely because of the pressures of bonuses and targets, and selling things you dont believe in.



    What business do you own?

    'You have not seen a real women, untill you have seen a beautifal hippy girl dancing bare foot in a field'

  • My shop is called Branches....I part own it with my family, I work with my mum and dad. We franchised out our business with 2 collegues and we have 7 shops in the UK. I only part own my own shop though.

  • i worked in a health food shop for a few years, mostly on saturdays. a small business is fun as you know everyone and its friendly, but its hard to get time off and petty arguments suck majorly in a small business.

    i met some of the best, the worst and the weirdest customers ever. 99% of the time i can deal with even the grumpiest of customers but if you feel down or tired it can be very tempting to throttle them. chocolate helps in these cases.

    oh, and my pay was crap, but the shop was struggling. i did used to get millions of free food because the owners didnt believe in wasting food. at one point about half of my freezer was stuffed with free stuff.

  • My shop is called Branches....I part own it with my family, I work with my mum and dad. We franchised out our business with 2 collegues and we have 7 shops in the UK. I only part own my own shop though.




    What kind of stuff do you sell???

    'You have not seen a real women, untill you have seen a beautifal hippy girl dancing bare foot in a field'

  • Hate, Hate, Hate. Theres nothing worse than having to get up at 8am in the morning and finishing at 5pm, only to have constant abuse and hassle by the dregs of society who think there somehow "better" than you because your only crime is working for a company that you dont know everything about. Your expected to know Everything about the job, otherwise the customer will complain that your a rubbish employee and thus must be immediately sacked for not knowing what such or such equipment does.
    Then theres the Chavs or shoplifters or people who just come in there to complain about something because they have nothing else better to do.
    I'd rather spend my days in the field picking up horse crap again than ever work in retail again where my effort is of little value to customers or managers alike.

  • Yeah, if I did it again it would only be in my own business.

    I worked in another book shop a few years back and this lovely man used to come in who'd been a fighter pilot in WW2. He'd been after a really obscure book for years that was written by someone that he flew with. I found it online in my own time and bought it for him - he was soooo happy and grateful. It's a really good feeling knowing that you've contributed towards that. So yes, working in a retail environment can be rewarding if you can stay focused on those special moments!





    Thats a lovely story Whirler :D

  • i don't mind them really, the customers can be a bit.:bang: but alot of the time you get genuinely nice people. :)
    & for the money its not too bad! :)

  • It's easy work. If you end up working for a company you dislike, which in my case is pretty much all high-street retailers, then you really don't need to care about the job at all. I always felt like the less I did at work the more my colleagues seemed to like me :s

  • I only had one retail job working for a video game store chain; worked in a few of the stores. I had a love-hate relationship with it; loved the enviornment and the people I worked with. Hated having to be nice to people who were trying to yell and scream at you to get something cheap or for free. A lady threw a pen at my boss once during the holidays. I didn't have to deal with many people who, um, lacked some intelligence. But you do get wonderful customers, and those are the kind that may the day at the job worthwhile. I could be having the worst day and can get some amazing people in there and totally lifted me up.


    I liked the shift work too; if I closed then I could go do stuff in the morning that I can't otherwise do in the evenings or in the afternoons if I were to open or work my current 7-4 job. I do miss the shifts.


    Overall the pay isn't great, but it depends on who you work for I guess. Gamestop pays an assistant manager about $8/hr if that; they're tightwads tho. Starbucks pays good and can invest in stocks and what have you. Cashiers at Best Buy make in the neighborhood of $12/hr, which is really pretty good for a retail cashier job. So money and benefits and all really depend on the company.


    I didn't get any vacation time working at the game store tho; and I worked under a couple of lazy managers, so they'd wait til 5 minutes before the store opened to call and wake me up to open the store as they just woke up themselves, when it's their shift. Guuhhhhh!

  • i worked in a couple of department stores when i was a student and i have to say that it was truly the worst job ever. sore feet, lots of really rude people who continued to be rude no matter how nice and accommodating you were oh yes and really bad pay. unless you are really desperate, i'd give it a miss.

  • I've had a few retail jobs in my time... one was where i was management rather than skivvy level but the pay was still shit.. what i loved most was workin in the local convenience store cos i knew alot of my customers and it was a real social buzz some days... get to hear LOTS of gossip lol People's moods seems to tally with the weather quite alot.. I dunno i'd do it again - i like workin with the public and sometimes you can change somebody's day with good customer service :) I think its quite good to have some form of mild OCD when working in retail because you never get bored... you can always re-stock or stock-take or just stock straighten.


    Worst retail job was working for the old department store Littlewoods - cos there was no sense of continuity with the general public... I'd rather work face to face with the public than on a phone any day of the week...


    Favourite retail job was my old job working at the cafe and i bloody loved that job even though it was stressful as fuck at times - i miss the fast pace and the buzz with the customers


    Goodluck with your job hunt :)