The Truth About Working Retail

When I was fifteen I printed off my wildly unimpressive résumé, put on my most professional jeans, and asked my mom to drive me to the mall. I applied at every store I could think of, from shoe stores to the ice-cream kiosk. Two weeks later I received a phone call from a lingerie store; it was on that day that I signed my soul away to the devil that is retail. Almost five years later, and I haven’t looked back.

The lifestyle at one point was appealing, as a 15 year old kid employee discounts and a fancy name tag made me feel like a grown up. However after working almost three years at a lingerie store and several other clothing retailers, I would like to warn every one of the love/hate career path that is retail.

These are the things that have not been put in the job description, but are painstakingly real for any retail worker.


  1. Say Good-Bye To Family Holidays: The mall is open later during the holiday season, Boxing Day will make you feel ill and black Friday calls for black coffee.
  2. Say Good-Bye To Your Pay-Check: I can’t be alone in my shopping habits! It seems impossible to not purchase new arrivals at a discounted rate.
  3. You Better Have Thick Skin: Customers are angry and contrary to popular belief, they are usually wrong.
  4. You Will Get Tired of Hearing, “Wait so what is on sale?”, “Last week this was cheaper!” and “Can I speak to a manager?”
  5. Early Mornings: The mall may not open until ten but it is your job to maintain a clean store, and place the new product… morning shifts are a killer!
  6. Your friends will think you are their personal shopper.
  7. No one wants to work fitting rooms.
  8. Customers will try to flirt with you for discounts.
  9. Children will ALWAYS make a mess of a freshly folded pile.
  10. Your store’s playlist will eventually drive you crazy.
  11. You deserve WAY more than minimum wage.
  12. You often play therapist for customers who are in a rush and are having a bad day.
  13. Technology sucks and your computer system will crash daily, and customers will blame you.
  14. January is the month of infinite returns.
  15. Customers will stay in the store and shop even if you are closed.
  16. Once You Go Retail, You Never Go Back: You will never be able to enjoy a desk job again. The fast paced, intense environment is unlike any other.
  17. You will hate it.
  18. But you will love it.

You Might Also Like

  • raj12323
    January 28, 2015 at 6:04 am

    Bigg Boss 8 Winner i like this tiger one