Top 5 Traits to Look For When Hiring Retail Employees

Top 5 Traits to Look For When Hiring Retail Employees

Are you madly staffing up for the holiday season? Many retailers struggle to find enough employees on hand to service the right customers. Employees are the face of the brand and business. So how do you guarantee the right employees are out there for you?

“When a person is not the right fit, they’re not engaged. And when they’re not engaged it hurts the customer experience, the brand and the business.”

  • David Ian Grey, Founder DIG360, Retail Advisor

Employee turnover (both through resignations & terminations) can most often be traced to a mismatch in the hiring process and a lack of understanding a candidate’s work values, attitudes and capabilities, and what it takes to be successful on the job. By understanding the candidate’s personality more deeply, you can increase the likelihood of their engagement and energy at work.

The top personality traits to look for in new retail front-line workers are:

1. Achievement-Focused

A person with a high need for achievement demonstrates a strong work ethic through consistently high levels of energy and focus. The strengths they bring to your workplace are:

  • Thrive in a fast-paced environment
  • Self-motivated
  • Stays enthusiastic, optimistic and committed to reaching goals
  • Recovers quickly from rejection or disappointment, and starts each new opportunity with renewed energy

2. Open Communication, Conformity & Responsibility

A person with these work values demonstrates an honest desire to provide a friendly, efficient, quality service to each customer. The strengths they bring to your workplace are:

  • Sociable, open and approachable
  • Listens well to customer complaints and resolves conflict quickly
  • Builds trust by behaving in a manner that builds the business’ reputation for honest dealings
  • Quickly builds long-lasting relationships with customers

3. Positivity & Product Passion

A person with these values shows a passion for the company’s products and encourages team members to share in this passion. The strengths they bring to your workplace are:

  • Applies product knowledge, training & experience to enhance the team’s performance
  • Stays informed on new developments and product updates
  • Aware of competitors’ practices and uses information in day-to-day activities
  • Remains positive no matter the mood of the customer or teammates

4. Coachability

A person with high coachability is open to learning new skills, knowledge and better ways to make the sale. The strengths they bring to your workplace are:

  • Open to change and responds positively to suggestions for improvement
  • Has the ability to apply new skills and learn on the job
  • Actively seeks out job-related skill development
  • Responds well to constructive criticism 

5. Empathy & Aggression Control

A person with high empathy and aggression control works effectively with team members to display the best brand image and deliver the best customer experience. The strengths they bring to your workplace are:

  • Displays warmth and a sense of humour
  • Shows genuine interest with sensitivity towards others
  • Listens well and values the opinions and perspectives of others
  • Is helpful and patient with new team members

By identifying which candidates have what it takes to survive and thrive in a busy retail environment you can maximize your hiring process to prevent unwanted staff shortages, culture disruptions, and customer dissatisfaction. A retail team should run like a well-oiled machine all year round. To do this, you’ll need to have all team members aligned in their values and attitudes. 

To identify these types of high-performing retail employees and build happier, more productive retail teams, try using TalentClick’s specialized assessment called the Attitude-Values-Personality for Retail (AVP-R)

Get started with the AVP for Retail and find your right employees in time for the holiday season!