Get out of retail

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Comments (4)

Lisa Rivera in Saugus, Massachusetts

55 months ago

Does anyone have any suggestions on the best way to get out a retail career? I have 20+ years of retail experience. Over the past few years I have held several postions including Operations Manager, and most recently, Studio Manager. I hold a Bachelors degree in Fashion Merchandising and Retail Management, but I am suffering "retail burnout" and need a change. In my prior positions, I used corporate databases only, which means, I lack proficiency in Word, Excel, and the like. I am taking self paced training, but I am not sure this is going to be enough. Any suggestions on possible career paths or resume setups ( I am using a functional style) will be greatly appreciated.

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Nanlisa in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania

55 months ago

Lisa: Perhaps you can do outside sales or even be a sales manager in another field. You can even do inside sales if you want to. After all, your skills are transferable into other industries.

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KC in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

52 months ago

It's tough to say the least. I had 10 years of retail experience, but I shifted over to a lower-paying administrative/HR position with a fixed schedule in my last job as soon as it opened up, went back to school nights for 2 years to get an AAS in Computer Networking (Cisco Systems) to add to my BS in Business, and leveraged all of that to get an IT job at the corporate office of the store I was working in.

The problem with retail management is it's not a skill, and certainly not a marketable one outside the field of retail. Your skill is your tolerance for the long hours, customers disrespecting you, and trying to motivate underpaid associates to do even the basics of what is expected of them.

You need to go back to school and get a SKILL. Something that requires specialized training, certification, or some sort of barrier to entry. Nursing would be a good one. 2 years in school and you can sell your years of customer experience as bedside manner.

But you need to face facts, you're 20 plus years in and selling your operations management experience to get an administrative job with no MS Office Suite experience is a tough sell. Even if you are 40+, it's never too late to reinvent yourself. But there is no quick fix. Retail is quick sand. Once you're in, it's not easy to get out and it's going to take a little effort on your part. Good luck to you.

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Erin Myers in Reseda, California

51 months ago

Here, here. The only type of work that I can get is Retail. But I am going back to School and studying Web Development, Programming, Graphic Design. I'll be working as an hourly Peon during that time, well worth the rewards, even at 40, I do believe.

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