03/07/2015
Because you just don't get the credit you deserve.

Words by

Emma Cotterell

9am. The floor is vacuumed. The door is opened. Someone puts their music on. You hope it’s not the girl who plays country tunes and Pop Goes Punk. Oh wait. It is. It’s going to be a long day.

The first customer walks in. You start chatting, touching shelves, moving clothes around. They don’t want to speak to you. “I’m just looking.” Classic.

Don’t get us wrong. There are some lovely people in retail. That favourite customer that always comes in - always a buyer, always a chatter. Hairdressers always say they are like psychologists, but we here at Fashion Journal just don’t think retail workers get the credit they deserve. Every retail worker has at least one crazy story to share. Here’s why.

First of all usually a retail worker must be wearing something from the store. That’s all very well and good, unless you really don’t like what you are selling. 

Second of all, there are lots of different and interesting people in this world. And you'll encounter most of them working retail. There are over-sharers, unnervingly quiet people, vague people, strangely specific people, charmingly lovely people, cute crumb creating children, extremely flamboyant people, interesting people with great stories and worst of all “I want to speak to the manager” people. 

Nothing beats the satisfaction of having your manager tell someone exactly what you just did. It’s a day maker. 

Third and lastly, you MUST smile through it all. Number one rule of retail. Smile and nod, always. Even if a woman is telling you about her affair with her gardener. 

But working in retail can also be very rewarding. It’s not all listening to peoples problems and trying to sigh your way to the end of the day. Finding a customer something they like and building a relationship with them to the point where they come back and see you to bring Wagon Wheels for the staff is a lot of fun. 

Plus, retail is a great first stepping stone of any career fashion based. So stick with it, work your way up and jump at every opportunity you get. Apply for every promotion, ask for more (the worst answer you can get is no) and be on the look out for your golden moment. You are not wasting your time - even though it may feel like it occasionally.

Unless of course you want to be an astronaut. Then get out. 

Photography: 
Jackson Grant @ Aevoe

Leave a comment

Related

So you wanna be a stylist/ photographer/ designer.
It seriously makes me question the term ‘influencer’.
Because shopping IRL is so much more fun than online.
A favourite of ours for a little while now.
Blending the lines between fashion and art.
Not your standard retail store.
Migraines and head colds just don't cut it anymore.
Work, work, work, work, work.
What do you wanna be when you grow up? I wanna work at Snapchat.
It’s like a hole in our heart has finally been filled.
"To me, working in fashion just seemed so far our of reach."
Help because we are freaking out right now.
To those doing Christmas from the other side of the register.
Hello writers, it's Fashion Journal calling.
Faultless glamour, effortless style.
A list of the stranger fash collabs out there.
The opportunity of a lifetime, please and thank you.
With over 600 stalls, we thought you might want some help.
Who said you have to be good at art to be an artist?
Cronut : [kroh-nuh t, -nuht] def : a brand name for a pastry made from croissant dough that has been deep-fried and shaped into...
Young Retailer of the Year nominations are now open.
See Flanders repping Yeezy and Bart looking steez.
Because you shouldn't feel out of place, even when you can't afford it.
"Kim, all these furs have to be long enough to be draggin' on the floor."
Because hanging decorations on Christmas trees is so 2013...
Justa Local Store is as passionate about giving back as they are about fashion