How to prepare for an assistant retail manager interview

Preparing for an interview, especially if it is for advancement, can be a daunting prospect. It can be even more of a challenge if you are unfamiliar with the company you are applying to. However, you can prepare carefully prior to the interview. The assistant manager of a retail team is a vital link between the junior members of the team and management. An assistant manager would also run the store in the absence of the manager. Therefore, it is expected that an assistant manager not only gets on well with others, but also balances approachability with authority.

If the company is unfamiliar, then it may be a good idea to do as much research on the company as possible. Find out what the company makes, sells or does. This will also give you an insight into the philosophy of the company. This may provide an idea of the role of assistant manager in the company. A good place to start may be on the company website. There may be a section on the history of the company, which may provide useful information.

If possible, obtain a copy of the job specifications. It may be wise to run through this prior to the interview to see if you can meet some, if not all of the requirements the role may represent. It might well be possible to request one from the head office of the company.

Try and anticipate the kind of questions you might be asked in an assistant manager's interview. An interviewer is likely to ask several questions relevant to the position of assistant manager. For example, the interviewer might ask about motivating and training junior members of a team. He may also include questions about your specific strengths and weaknesses, what you can bring to the job role as well as administrative skills and your ability to delegate.

Try and visit the store where you could end up working. If possible, meet the team and the manager. This will not only help to familiarise you with the store, but also give you an idea of how hard or easy it is to travel there. It may also take the pressure off on interview day and demonstrate enthusiasm in the company and an interest in the potential new team. Indeed, this may be standard practice if you already work for the company and therefore should not only be straightforward to achieve, but desirable as well.

Think about what to wear. Even if the job is for a retail position, it will benefit the candidate enormously to dress smartly. Not only will this promote confidence in the interviewee, but will also create a good impression on the interview panel.

Finally, have faith in yourself and your experiences. The interviewer would not have invited you to an interview if they thought you were not ready for the role.

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