Retail employees are a key component in the overall success of a small business. They are the face of the company in most instances, as retail employees are the first to handle customer issues one-on-one. As a result, having a team of engaging workers that provide excellent customer service is vital. On the other hand, if employees are rude, uninformed, and inefficient, customers may think twice about ever visiting your store again. 


To ensure that your business offers the highest customer service possible and continues to bring in repeat customers, here are a few of the most important qualities retail employees should possess to facilitate engagement with customers: 


  • Friendliness: It is imperative that employees are friendly to all customers. Customers do not want to interact with grumpy or rude sales associates and may never return to your store due to the attitude that is projected by the employees. Make sure employees greet customers with a smile and have a pleasant demeanor. 
  • Quick Learner: Whether it’s learning how to use the POS system for your business, the variety of products and services, or their overall job responsibilities, it is important that your employees are quick learners. Having to re-train employees cuts down on productivity and puts everyone behind. Make sure your business trains employees efficiently so they are able to pick up quickly on their responsibilities. 
  • Confidence: Having confidant employees will result in higher customer service. Employees who are not afraid to strike up a conversation with strangers, make eye contact, and are self-reliant are key aspects of confident skills. 
  • Patience: Employees need to realize they will be dealing with all types of customers - good and bad. Remaining calm and having patience is key, especially when associating with disgruntled customers. 
  • Respect: Customers must be treated at all times with the utmost respect, even if they may not be right in the situation. Having employees who understand this and project respect towards others will go a long way. 
  • Can Multi-Task: One of the prime characteristics retail associates should have is being able to juggle multiple responsibilities. In addition to their store duties, employees will also have to handle customer’s questions and assist them with their needs.
  • Team Players: Since there will typically be more than one retail associate within a small business, employees will need to work together as a team each day to maintain the success of the business. By having a unified team who is cohesive, a small business will be able to thrive and grow. 


Customer engagement is a major factor in a positive shopping experience and a great way to gain a repeating customer. Small businesses need to do their part in making sure their retail employees have the qualities and traits at hand to be able to engage with customers. By following the above list, small businesses will be able to build a team of outstanding employees.