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How Working in a Grocery Store Makes for a Great Job Experience

‘Not Your Real Job.’

Grocery Store JobsI read an article recently from a graduate who spoke of her experiences working in a grocery store and how she always felt as though people were looking down on her or she’d get commiserations that this wasn’t her ‘real job’. However, as she pointed out, working in a grocery store is hard work (memorizing all of those codes!), it requires great social skills, the ability to work with money, the ability to stay organized and having to clock in and out on someone else’s schedule, all usually for minimum wage. Certainly people may not see it as a ‘real job’, but then again, how do you define a real job? If you are looking for work, work experience and a chance to improve your soft skills, then working in a grocery store may make perfect sense and even be a great job experience overall-even when there are days where you’d like to stick that cucumber where it really ought not to go! How can working grocery help your resume and bulk out your employability in many other fields?

Soft Skills for Employment

Working in a grocery store is tough. You get to deal with cranky people, rushed people, memorize scads of codes, keep on top of deals and do it all with a smile on your face. Certainly much of it automated now, but much of it is not and that just means you’re supposed to be fast and happy at the same time. It’s not easy!

However, you can highlight some pretty amazing soft skills when you go looking for another job, including:

  • Amazing customer service skills. If you can keep the Express line happy and moving, you’re on top of the customer service world!
  • Organizational and memory skills.
  • Ability to work with money, including cash, debit and credit cards, as well as customer loyalty cards
  • Patience
  • Marketing skills (particularly if you have to ‘sell’ people on donating to charities)
  • Punctual
  • Physically fit, since you should be able to lift at least 50lbs to get the job and you have to be on your feet all day.
  • These are all skills which almost every industry looks for and can be received in your humble corner store.

    Getting a Job in a Grocery Store

    Cashiers and jobs like that in a grocery store are considered to be ‘entry level’ jobs, meaning that you don’t need any specific education or experience. However, there are some things which you will need to have on your resume in order to be more attractive. You should be sixteen years of age or older, be willing to work nights and weekends, enjoy being around people all day, be fit enough to lift up to 50 pounds and be very patient! Most grocery stores stop there with the requirements and as you gain more experience and can work your way up the ladder, you can start breaking into management which pays better.

    Your resume should highlight things like flexibility, patience and good people skills. If you’re going to school, make sure to bring that up in the interview, but point out that you are available on evenings and weekends which is when most grocery stores see their rush and need workers anyway.

    Working in a grocery store is challenging-particularly if you don’t feel like it’s your ‘real job’ and you feel like others are looking down on you, but it can be very beneficial to you, not to mention give you some great stories! If you enjoy working with people and you want to work in a fast-paced environment, grocery stores may be a great place to start. Good luck!