can be rewarding, and often offer more flexibility than careers in other fields. Most offer healthcare plans and other benefits, and many retail jobs also come with employee discounts and other perks. There are almost always entry-level positions available, and most don't require any special skills.
There is more to the world of retail than just running a cash register or stocking shelves. While most people start in the stockroom or the sales floor, there are often advancement opportunities that involve management and special skills that can be acquired on the job. Before submitting applications and attending interviews, it is worthwhile to look through some retail job reviews
to get an idea what sort of company you would be working for.
Before you begin investigating retail careers and filling out applications, it is wise to evaluate your own plans, goals, and needs. Are you looking for a summer job, or a lifelong career? Do you need extensive health benefits and a retirement savings plan? What kind of hours can you work, and how flexible are you in terms of scheduling? What is the minimum number of hours you would like to work per week? Are you available early in the morning, late at night, or on weekends? Do you have children in school, an elderly parent to care for, or other major commitments that need consideration from your employer?
As you fill out applications, it is important to be honest about your experience and your skills and abilities. If you can't stand up comfortably for more than a couple of hours, make sure potential employers know this before they schedule you for an eight-hour shift at a cash register. If you have back problems and cannot lift heavy objects without risk of injury, do not agree to take a position unloading heavy boxes.
At the same time, you should definitely state any particular skills or knowledge you have that could be useful. If you play many video games you may be especially helpful in the electronics department of a large retail store. If you have an eye for fashion you may have a talent for helping customers find clothes that fit. If you are friendly, outgoing, and patient you may be particularly valued in a customer service department.
Several different magazines have published lists of good retail companies to work for. Business Week and Fortune Magazine both publish annual lists of companies that treat their employees well and provide excellent benefits. These articles often include several different lists that rank retail companies by criteria like employee-retention rates, health and retirement benefits, flexibility, and job satisfaction.
Most of the companies on these lists are large retail chains that have stores across the country and around the world. Experienced employees and former employees in good standing can often find work with the same company at another store following a move. Retail careers
seem like a dead end to many people, but there are many opportunities for advancement and achievement in this field.
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