While you don’t need to be a Mensa member to work in a convenience store, there is a certain degree of basic intelligence required to excel. Cashiers, for example, should be able to think on their feet in difficult situations. Managers should demonstrate an ability to plan ahead. The interviewing process is key to finding employees who can not only fill your immediate staffing needs, but be an asset to your operation down the road. You’ll usually gain a clear view of a candidate’s general intelligence and aptitude from the way he or she answers questions, but you should still ask a few questions that reveal how bright and capable a candidate is. You’re not necessarily looking for substance in their answers. Look for the ability to formulate thoughts under pressure. Here are a few good interviewing questions for convenience store managers to ask prospective employees:
What Do You Know? Try These Interviewing Questions
What do you do when you’re having trouble solving a problem?
Is the candidate afraid to ask others for help or advice? Is the candidate more action-oriented or analytical? Also ask: “How would you go about turning the following negative situation into a positive one?” Give an example of a situation that could occur on the job. Would they run for a manager or try to solve the problem themselves?
How do you plan your day?
Does the candidate make lists, get organized and get right at things or does he or she just “go with the flow…”?
What should your current (or former) employer do to be more successful?
Does the candidate bad-mouth the employer? Is the candidate able to see his or her own role in the improvement of the store? Also ask: “What do you think are the most serious problems facing the convenience store business today? The answer will reveal if the candidate is in tune to the big picture. Candidates who can’t answer this question at all may be a cause for concern, especially if they list previous convenience store experience on their application. You’ll want the people working for you to understand your operational, marketing and financial challenges.
“What can you do that others who might get this position probably can’t do?” and “If I were working for you, how would you help me succeed?”
If you have two candidates that seem equally qualified, the answers to these two questions may help you make the right decisions.
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