Archived 90 Day Probation as a Cashier, what keeps you?

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PJ5

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Hello, I just finished my first week as cashier. During every break and after every shift I would bolt to my car and panic thinking what the h3ll am I going to do. I don't think I'm doing well enough for them and I feel overwhelmed by the position partly because of the speed (reusable bags are the worst for me, I look like a monkey trying to stick a square into a circle) and Other than what is job related I don't make much conversation with customers (hi how are you, coupons? red card? have a good day) and anyone in red and khaki and I have no desire to . I basically just wanted to know what is important to TLs and ETLs in deciding whether or not to keep you past 90 days or ever sooner. I live in an area where it's hard to find min wage jobs unless it's the holiday season. They hired a girl along with me who keeps talking about how she will be picking up all these shifts on the board and if you need me here call me and I'll work to anyone she can, she is also chummy with the TLs after a week and it just makes me feel worse about it. Honestly, I don't feel right for the position or Target for the matter but I need the money, they aren't hiring for other positions, and don't want to ruin myself with Target for the future. Thanks!
 
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PullMonkey

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I know how you feel. You're describing how I was when I first started, but it gets better and easier. Trust me.

The first few weeks are gonna be rough as you learn how to efficiently do everything. Hell, I'll always hate those floppy reusable bags, but don't let it get to ya.

As for being chummy, just start small. A hey here, a "have a good night" there, and build up from that.

You got this! :)
 

PullMonkey

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As for that other cashier, don't worry about it. We're all different. I work with a guy who acts a lot like her, and it's fine. We both ended up getting kept past seasonal, so obviously we were both liked in some way.
 

commiecorvus

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First off, deep breaths.
Second, don't worry about letting off a little steam here.
That's what The Break Room is for, we're grown ups so a hell or two won't bother us.

Sounds like you're an introvert trying to do a job that is really more for extroverts but it is doable so don't worry.
Second despite what some people say cashier does have a kinda steep learning curve at first.
Much of it is muscle memory, getting the feeling for where your hands need to be at any given moment makes a big difference.
Try working out a set patter too, I know it can be difficult not to sound robotic but if you change the pitch of you voice saying the same thing to each customer is fine and it's keeps you in a zone.
You won't forget things that way.

I understand about needing the money and trying to do a job that doesn't feel like the right kind of fit.
There are other jobs in the store that you might be able to transfer to after a while where you wouldn't have to interact as much.
 

PullMonkey

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Emphasis on the "set patter". I'll always start with a "Hey, how ya doin', you need a bag for anything?" and see how it goes. Sometimes I will go through a transaction without saying much, but it depends on the guest.
 

PJ5

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I know how you feel. You're describing how I was when I first started, but it gets better and easier. Trust me.

The first few weeks are gonna be rough as you learn how to efficiently do everything. Hell, I'll always hate those floppy reusable bags, but don't let it get to ya.

As for being chummy, just start small. A hey here, a "have a good night" there, and build up from that.

You got this! :)
Well, I expected this much the first week, I just get the feeling they expected more. You are right I have a while to go and the room should feel like it's not spinning shortly. I was concerned a decision would be made within the first month and not the full 90 days. I *do* do greetings and farewells, just have to work on the inbetweens :)
 

commiecorvus

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Well, I expected this much the first week, I just get the feeling they expected more. You are right I have a while to go and the room should feel like it's not spinning shortly. I was concerned a decision would be made within the first month and not the full 90 days. I *do* do greetings and farewells, just have to work on the inbetweens :)


Well, the one thing they are expecting is asking about Redcards.
If you can come up with a nice three sentence selling spiel on those and drop it in every time that will help considerably.
And I do mean every time, even if it's for a pack of gum.
 

PJ5

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First off, deep breaths.
Second, don't worry about letting off a little steam here.
That's what The Break Room is for, we're grown ups so a hell or two won't bother us.

Sounds like you're an introvert trying to do a job that is really more for extroverts but it is doable so don't worry.
Second despite what some people say cashier does have a kinda steep learning curve at first.
Much of it is muscle memory, getting the feeling for where your hands need to be at any given moment makes a big difference.
Try working out a set patter too, I know it can be difficult not to sound robotic but if you change the pitch of you voice saying the same thing to each customer is fine and it's keeps you in a zone.
You won't forget things that way.

I understand about needing the money and trying to do a job that doesn't feel like the right kind of fit.
There are other jobs in the store that you might be able to transfer to after a while where you wouldn't have to interact as much.

Yes, I am more of an introvert, I am nice to people but an introvert (I found out today I have to stand in front of my checkout lane to let guests know I'm open (isn't that what the light is for?) if I have no guests and I tried not to look like it was awkward for me just standing there like i'm waiting to salute the general walking by). The cashier next to me acts the same way I do with customers however he has worked there for a while so at least he knows what he is doing. I had originally applied for sales floor and after an interview (4 other people were interviewed for the job as well) it was decided that I would be a better fit for cashier (we need cashiers you'll do).
Well that is what I wanted to ask about as well, I would be interested in softlines and prehaps the pizza hut/target cafe if the position was available. Should I mention this at the end of my 90 days or should I mention it if I'm asked by HR before the 90 days?
Thank you (and dmillerw) for the warm words I needed it. I'm off for a few days after working all my days in a row so it'll give me time to relax and make a comeback :)
 
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PJ5

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Well, the one thing they are expecting is asking about Redcards.
If you can come up with a nice three sentence selling spiel on those and drop it in every time that will help considerably.
And I do mean every time, even if it's for a pack of gum.
Yes I do ask about the Red cards, half of my checkouts have them already but I know what a biggie that is so I make sure the TLs hear me ask about them so it makes up for the other things :)
 

commiecorvus

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You're welcome.

I'm guessing (as usual ASANTS) that softlines might not be as easy to get into as pizza hut/TC.
Most stores are always looking for people to work food, but beware you might be stuck there forever.
If you don't mind that, I would certainly ask to be cross trained there as soon as you feel comfortable on register.

One of the things you can do in terms of the standing in from of your register is ask the GSA or GSTL if there is anything you can do, like stocking candy, One Spot, etc.
This will keep you busy so you don't feel self conscious and will make you popular with the bosses.
 

mrknownothing

purveyor of things
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OP, I know how you feel. I was a seasonal cashier and, on top of being an introvert, it was my first time operating a cash register (or really doing anything in a retail environment, for that matter). Sometimes, I still wonder how I managed to get hired on.
 

PJ5

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You're welcome.

I'm guessing (as usual ASANTS) that softlines might not be as easy to get into as pizza hut/TC.
Most stores are always looking for people to work food, but beware you might be stuck there forever.
If you don't mind that, I would certainly ask to be cross trained there as soon as you feel comfortable on register.

One of the things you can do in terms of the standing in from of your register is ask the GSA or GSTL if there is anything you can do, like stocking candy, One Spot, etc.
This will keep you busy so you don't feel self conscious and will make you popular with the bosses.


At least in my area the two Targets we have were never hiring for food/starbucks (no starbucks, people go nuts for that overpriced crap here) for the last 6 months I checked the availability online, always sales floor and cashier, everything else grayed out. Hopefully once I'm working closings thery they might ask, but from what I saw they only want you to straighten out your checklane or end cap while you look for customers but everything was neat already. (From shopping there for a while before working the store is a little busy around noon while people buy dinner supplies and 4-7 otherwise there aren't too many people there, the other Target I don't work for has twice the amount of customers and it's not a Super Target).
 

PJ5

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OP, I know how you feel. I was a seasonal cashier and, on top of being an introvert, it was my first time operating a cash register (or really doing anything in a retail environment, for that matter). Sometimes, I still wonder how I managed to get hired on.
I've worked as a cashier before but it was a small business, I'm not used to the speed, high volume, extra register commands, so many coworkers and names :)
 
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Honestly, it all comes in time. You will learn as you go and it might seem scary now, but eventually you'll be talking to everyone.

I'm super shy and have a slit stutter with new people, but maybe after a month or two of working there I was comfortable enough to talk to guests like they were my friends or like they were people I normally talked too. Also think about how you might never see these people more than like once throughout the whole week. Just relax. It will all come with time.
 

mrknownothing

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I've worked as a cashier before but it was a small business, I'm not used to the speed, high volume, extra register commands, so many coworkers and names :)

The nice thing is that our POS software is fairly straight-forward; in my opinion, it's easier than using a stand-alone cash register. The more time you spend doing it, the more you get used to it and it seems less intimidating. And the front end is a good place to meet new people since you're almost always around other cashiers.
 
X

Xscape

Guest
Hey, don't you worry about it. I was just like you too, I'm actually on hardlines but I felt the exact same way. I couldn't stand being there on my first days, I was always nervous about doing something wrong. Give it some time, just like someone said above- it's all muscle memory. Hang in there, we believe in you!
 

Flabbergasted

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7 months ago I started out cashiering, not knowing anything that was going on. It was only my second job ever. Now I'm a GSA (unofficially) and am considered an "expert" at the front-end. You'll get the hang of things in no time.
 
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I lean toward being introverted as well. I try my best to interact with the guests. I have a few different greetings, just to change it up a bit: Hi/How are you?/Hi there!. I can't say How you doin? without thinking of Joey Tribiani from Friends so I don't say that one. ;) Say hi to the kids. People like it when you're nice to their kids. Plus people like talking about their kids so there's an opening right there for conversation...

One thing that helps me is that I think of the register and surrounding area as my cockpit. :cool: I own it. I can run it as I see fit, not the guest. I can totally fake being outgoing and friendly. lol Set it up so that you're comfortable. (I always have to move the monitor back because I'm far sighted plus this makes more room over the keyboard. I always need the tacky finger pink stuff because it helps with handling the bags and guests items). Make sure you have receipt paper, Catalina coupon paper, extra bags, wrapping paper.

Try engaging other cashiers in conversation... How long have you been here? (If they've been there a long time, then go to Have you worked in any other positions?) TMs do talk to TLs and give them opinions on whether a newbie is friendly or not, whether they're catching on or not, etc.

When it's slow, offer to empty the hanger bins, collect reshop (that's what we call items guests don't want at my store).

I'm always grateful when a guest is on their phone. Less idle chit chat for me. hahaha
Sometimes they're like Oh, sorry about that. I tell them don't worry about it.

As for the in between conversation, sometimes I'm silent especially if a guests has other people with them and they're talking amongst themselves. Otherwise I sometimes comment on what they're buying: Oh, this is so cute! Wow, that's a great price! Oh, I've tried these. They're really good. Have you tried these before? How were they? The little old ladies are really cute and most of the time, lonely. Try and be extra nice to them. (Do you need help loading that? Is the bag too heavy?) Often they'll go tell a supervisor how nice you were.
 
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PJ5

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I appreciate the advice.
I lean toward being introverted as well. I try my best to interact with the guests. I have a few different greetings, just to change it up a bit: Hi/How are you?/Hi there!. I can't say How you doin? without thinking of Joey Tribiani from Friends so I don't say that one. ;) Say hi to the kids. People like it when you're nice to their kids. Plus people like talking about their kids so there's an opening right there for conversation...

One thing that helps me is that I think of the register and surrounding area as my cockpit. :cool: I own it. I can run it as I see fit, not the guest. I can totally fake being outgoing and friendly. lol Set it up so that you're comfortable. (I always have to move the monitor back because I'm far sighted plus this makes more room over the keyboard. I always need the tacky finger pink stuff because it helps with handling the bags and guests items). Make sure you have receipt paper, Catalina coupon paper, extra bags, wrapping paper.

Try engaging other cashiers in conversation... How long have you been here? (If they've been there a long time, then go to Have you worked in any other positions?) TMs do talk to TLs and give them opinions on whether a newbie is friendly or not, whether they're catching on or not, etc.

When it's slow, offer to empty the hanger bins, collect reshop (that's what we call items guests don't want at my store).

I'm always grateful when a guest is on their phone. Less idle chit chat for me. hahaha
Sometimes they're like Oh, sorry about that. I tell them don't worry about it.

As for the in between conversation, sometimes I'm silent especially if a guests has other people with them and they're talking amongst themselves. Otherwise I sometimes comment on what they're buying: Oh, this is so cute! Wow, that's a great price! Oh, I've tried these. They're really good. Have you tried these before? How were they? The little old ladies are really cute and most of the time, lonely. Try and be extra nice to them. (Do you need help loading that? Is the bag too heavy?) Often they'll go tell a supervisor how nice you were.

These are good ideas. I do appreciate you and the other posters with their warm responses.
Btw, I got a voicemail from my TL asking if I wanted to take on an available shift at 9am sunday and if i was interested to call her, thing is i had a late night (which is what probably happened to the cashier who called out) and by the time i woke up and got the message it was way too late. if you don't take on shifts that are just sprung on you is that allowed to affect your 90 day probation? in my 1st interview the ETL did ask me what would i say if i called you on a friday night and asked you to come in etc.
 

PullMonkey

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Generally you're alright as long as you call in at some point, but even then it really depends on your store's leadership. My store at least appreciates an acknowledgement call if nothing else.
 

commiecorvus

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It doesn't hurt your 90 if you can't work one but you it does make you look better.
 

PJ5

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okay well been another two weeks and i'm feeling better and doing better. again, i really appreciate the encouraging words. are there any other cashiers here that have the tops of their hands all scratched up from the horrible sharp plastic register cash flaps? my old job had the smooth metal ones which were MUCH better and easier to get the money out. also the plastic bag station is designed for a 711 not a large store with numerous purchases (items in the bag knock into the shelf when you move the bag to the side counter due to it being so cramped.
Anyway I just have to work on the red card pitch because the honest reality is people don't want that cr@p and guests have mentioned they still don't trust Target after that hacking issue so it's difficult to get them to sign up. Morning TL who is the only front end TL who pushes the cashiers to get red cards and said the goal was 1 per shift but we don't get that as far as I tell.
the work environment and co workers(majority) have been nice so far so it helps. Eventually i would like to get into the cafe being it's more what i'm used to and i can walk around more than i can now, i don't see myself trying to stay a cashier permanently if possible.
OH and back to topic btw, i think i will do just fine with my 90 day probation (maybe redcards will be my weakness) because there is a cashier who started when i did (the one who talks to everyone that i mentioned in my first post) and she has called out once and been sent home for different reasons 3 times since we started three weeks ago. i thought she was fired for the last time she went home the other day but i saw her today and all was fine with her so unless something very unexpected happens i think i will be fine.
 
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PullMonkey

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Ohhh yeah. My first few weeks I was bleeding all over everything. Since I do most things by muscle memory though, I think my brain's learned to avoid them.
 

Nauzhror

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I'm a severe introvert. I do fine now, but when I was first hired the GSTL kept suggesting I change workcenters because he thought I was too introverted for the front end. Now I'm the undisputed front-end expert in my store, and the goto person for the GSA's and the ETL-GE when they need help.
 
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