Career Advice on How to Become A Retail Salesperson

General Career Information

Can you sell beef to a cow?  Then you my friend may have exactly what it takes to be retail salesperson, and you may want to add this career to your career planning or job search.  The retail salesperson takes the endless stream of poorly made products and convinces you that you need them.  “Really you don’t already have Gadget X, well how to you manage to cut your toenails.”  And the list goes on and on.

Career Facts:

Your garden-variety retail salesperson is employed selling people all sorts of things they don’t need, at outrageous prices, so that they will be happy.  These goods rarely make the customer happy, but the retail salesperson works to make the customer forget about all those other bad shopping experiences. He or she says, “No, this time will be different.  This is not like those other products you have tried!” 

Of course, working the con isn’t the only angle for the retail salesperson, as they also have to take your money.  This can come in the form of taking your credit card or good old-fashioned cash.  Depending upon where a retail salespeople are employed, they may be expected to have a respectable degree of knowledge about the products they are selling or at least enough knowledge that they can fool the consumer.  Other duties may include flirting with your girlfriend, boyfriend or spouse when you are not looking, and trying to convince you that you need a warranty on the worthless product you are buying.  Or best of all that you need help from their in-house Dork Squad or the like.  In short, once you’ve walked in the doors, it is the job of the retail salesperson to work you like a punching bag at a gym for angry drunks.


Career Opportunities and Job Outlook- Average:

Since there are already so many people working in retail sales, the real surprise is that the expected job growth is expected to be about average between 2008 and 2018.  The rate of growth is expected to be roughly about eight percent, which may not sound like much, but it will mean an increase in the number of people trying to sell you an extended warranty will increase by roughly 370,000.  In the next ten years, its like the population of St. Paul-Minnesota will decide to get into the sales game.
Job Outlook is OK

A Day in The Life:

A day in the life of a retail salesperson will center mostly on helping people spend their money.  The range of interaction between the customer and the retail salesperson may range from fake friend to the ever popular “what do you want I make minimum wage and hate you” response.  Either way, it’s always interesting.

Average Salary:

The average salary for the North American Retail Salesperson is about $10 an hour.

Career Training and Qualifications:

Often training is on the job, but those looking to reach management positions should have college degrees.
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