Taking the Stigma Out of Convenience Careers


Attracting qualified new employees can be difficult for everyone, and convenience stores have an even bigger challenge to overcome. Whether we like it or not, working in the industry has a stigma that means job seekers might not even consider open positions at your store. Correcting common misconceptions about convenience store jobs could mean the difference between having a productive teamand being chronically under-staffed. 

5 Myths About Working in Convenience Stores

1. “Convenience store workers are often unskilled and uneducated.”

While it may be true that not every convenience store employee has a college degree, that does not make them uneducated. And just because many convenience store jobs are entry level, that does not mean the employees filling those positions are unskilled. In truth, convenience store jobs require specialized training beyond what an employee would need in most any other retail position. 

2. “This job is just a stepping stone until they find something better.”

For some employees, yes, this may be a job that earns them a short-term paycheck. Many others, though, take advantage of their company’s career development and management tracks to build promising futures in the convenience store industry. Every convenience store job has the potential for opportunities in management and beyond. 

3. “Convenience store workers are lazy.”

This is a common misconception of retail workers in general, but anyone who thinks this has never really worked in a convenience store. Convenience store employees are far from lazy. It is the nature of the business to have fewer employees working per shift, which means each employee needs to be able to handle all aspects of the job at once – stocking merchandise, providing customer service, maintaining fuel islands, and anything else the job requires. They also need to be constantly vigilant on issues related to safety, age-restricted sales, and scams. 

4. “Convenience stores only offer part-time work.”

Some convenience store employees do only work part-time, but this is often by choice. Flexible scheduling with night and weekend shifts is a benefit for employees who may be working multiple jobs, attending school, or taking care of kids at home. That doesn’t mean full-time work isn’t available in convenience stores. Many employees, especially those working toward positions in store management, work full-time hours with benefits. 

5. “Working in a convenience store is a dangerous job.”

Any job where you’re working with money and a cash register could make you a target for robberies. While there is some element of danger involved, there have also been improvements in preparing for dangerous situations. Employees today receive training on robbery prevention and safety as well as de-escalating difficult situations; two important topics discussing how to respond safely if a potentially dangerous situation arises. Advances in technology have also improved overall safety in convenience stores. 

Benefits of Working in a Convenience Store

Whether it’s a first job, a temporary part-time job to pay the bills, or a lifelong career choice, there are many benefits to working in the convenience industry. When you’re recruiting new employees, address the common misconceptions about convenience store jobs above and sell the truth about working in the industry. Be sure to hit these high points: 

  1. Flexible work schedule: A flexible schedule is perfect for those employees who are still in school or have family schedules to work around. 
  2. Experience with people from all backgrounds: Regardless of whether an employee plans to move on to another career, or stay within the industry, working in a convenience store provides them with unlimited experience in dealing with people from all walks of life and a variety of personalities. 
  3. Strong Foundation for a Career: Working in the convenience industry provides all employees with a great foundation for whatever career they may choose. Employees gain a variety of skills that can be used in nearly any industry. 
  4. Growth and career advancement: The convenience industry not only offers great entry level career opportunities for employees just starting out, but there’s a lot of opportunity for growth within your company and within the industry.  

Convenience Store Training

Overcoming common misconceptions about convenience stores is just the beginning – the next step is providing potential employees with the opportunities for career development and growth they’re looking for. Programs like RTO’s Gears to Your Career®, that lay out career paths for your employees, can have a huge impact on retention rates in any industry. Employing custom learning paths and the Gears to Your Career philosophy with the trainingGrid® LMS can prepare employees for promotion and leadership roles, making transitions much easier on both you and your team. 


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