A career in the retail field can be long or short, steady or growth-oriented, stable or full of unexpected change and surprises. The difference between each of these will depend on the nature of the employee, the geographic area, and the market for the specific product in question.
But in all cases, regardless of the challenges and decisions that come with a career in this industry, there are plenty of reasons to step into the word of retail. Especially right now, with the economy in a state of recovery and consumer spending climbing back to healthy levels.
If you're choosing a career path and need a few good reasons to enter retail, or at least try it out for the time being, here are a few considerations that might impact your decision.
Why Choose a Career in Retail?
The following sections outline the best reasons to start a career in retail, helping you decide whether or not the job is right for you:
1. Because you love what you're selling and you know almost everything there is to know about it.
Have you spent hours and hours of your free time learning everything you possibly can about consumer electronics? Maybe you know all about how they work, how to compare one product with another, and how to fix them when they break. You could talk all day about them, and you get excited when new products come onto the market. Or maybe you feel this way about fashionable clothes. Or camping gear. Or mid-century modern furniture. If so, why not get paid to surround yourself with the things you love and help other people understand them the way you do?
2. Because you need a job, and you need one now.
The retail field can be surprisingly easy to enter as long as you're able to demonstrate the reliability and work ethic most employers are looking for. Starting on the sales floor doesn't usually require a college degree, and once you've proven yourself, climbing the ladder to management is simply a matter of demonstrating the necessary skills, recognizing opportunities when they appear, and making your ambitions known. If you need work, going back to school for a degree in public health or geology might yield results over the long term…but a retail career is one you can step into right now.
3. Because you have a strong sense of leadership and a natural instinct for sales.
You know how to communicate well and you know how to listen carefully to customer needs. You can sell ice in the Arctic, and when you talk, people tune in. You also know how to organize and lead a team, you're energized by social situations, and you enjoy sharing what you know. An enthusiastic, positive person with your selling talent belongs in retail. Everyone likes you, everyone trusts you, and everyone turns to you when they need answers.
4. Because you need flexibility.
If the traditional nine-to-five workday doesn't fit your lifestyle and you prefer a more varied weekly or weekend schedule, retail might be a wise move for you. Retail careers can often be worked around part-time schedules and second jobs, and are often well adapted to the needs of those with multiple pressing obligations.
5. Because retail skills are transferable.
Retail is a fascinating industry that offers daily opportunities to learn new skills and polish the ones you already have. And many of the business, sales, accounting, and marketing lessons that you'll learn here can help open doors to a wide range of other fields. Step into your first retail position and you never know where you might end up a few years down the road.
Start Your Retail Career Today
If retail seems like the right career path for you, don't hesitate. Start your job search today and begin a rewarding career with promising long-term prospects. Visit LiveCareer to research salary information based on your geographic area, and when you're ready to start applying for positions, our interview and resume tools can help you make a great first impression.