4 Skills You Gain As A Retail Worker During The Festive Season

It’s safe to say that, if you work in retail, Christmas starts pretty much straight after Halloween. It’s one of the busiest times of the year and can involve working long hours right through to the New Years sale. By the end of it all you need a two-week holiday somewhere quiet!

As crazy as it can get,  working in retail does have its perks. Would you really give up that employee discount, getting first pick on the latest arrivals and those invaluable lifelong skills you’ve gained? Here are four skills you’ll gain from working in retail this Christmas period.



On a typical shift, you’ll be doing anything from operating the tills to being in charge of the changing room to walking the floor. All of these tasks demand someone who is responsible; as time goes on, you’ll find yourself being more accountable towards your actions.

For example, if you’re the first one in and have to open up then it’s a big responsibly to ensure that things are set up for the day ahead. Or you could be in charge of cashing up for the night; rather than just doing a quick job, you might double check all your figures to make sure everything adds up correctly. It’s how you act when no one is around that really defines how accountable you are and you’ll find yourself in this situation a lot in retail.



Working in retail can really test your patience – even more so during the Christmas period. Shoppers are stressed out, you’re busy doing your job and you can find yourself in frustrating situations where it feels like no-one is listening.

There are only so many times you can tell someone that the hot pink sequinned party dress is out of stock and you don’t know when it’ll be back. But of course, the customer is always right…



On a day-to-day basis you interact with countless customers; throughout the Christmas period, this number probably doubles. This isn’t an easy thing to do, especially if you’re quite shy and reserved, but after working in retail you’ll find yourself feeling more confident.

As your confidence grows, you might find yourself speaking up more during team meetings. You might even posit ideas for things like store displays or marketing campaigns. It’s the courage to speak up that counts!



There are many different issues you face when working in retail and you’ll find yourself having to think on your feet a lot of the time. Whether it’s a customer complaint or juggling multiple requests from customers, handling difficult situations is something you become better and better at.

Whether you’re working as a Christmas temp or want to progress within the retail industry, the festive period really does bring out the best in you. All of the skills you gain and develop will look great on your CV and most of them will apply to many other jobs too.

Happy selling!


Haleema Khokhar, also known as Kimi (a college nickname that stuck), is a journalism graduate working in the world of marketing and freelance writing. She loves animals, dance and a strong cup of tea. Check out her website and Twitter at @MyImpression_ you can also check out her personal Twitter at @KimiKhokhar 

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