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My Experience Working in a Lingerie Department
Some years ago I applied at a well know department store in search of a part- time job. I was hired on the spot and I was thrilled. I would be working in the lingerie department. I thought, no problem that should be easy enough.
I didn't know that I would be spending the next two days sitting in front of a computer taking all kinds of training on bra fitting, shapewear and panties. I was surprised at the amount of information that was available though and I did learn some things that I wasn't aware of or had paid much attention to before.
Once the computer training was over I figured I was ready to go. I was wrong. First I had to practice measuring people for the correct bra size. That training was done on my new co-workers. What a way to get to know people. I couldn't believe it! They were used to it and didn't seem to mind one bit.
I was then shown around the department, so many different brands, styles and sizes. My co-workers said it will all click for me in a couple of days. As my head was spinning from the quick tour, I wasn't so sure about that. I figured it would all make sense once I was on the sales floor.
My co-workers seemed nice enough and were quite helpful the first week. After that it was every man for himself. While we got a decent hourly wage you also had to keep up with a weekly sales quota. When a customer would walk in the department they would get attacked by whoever could get to her first. Since I was new it took me a little while to catch on to all of my co-workers little tricks in getting a customer. Once I got the hang of it though, it was all out war with a smile. You had to keep on your toes and try to develop a relationship with customers so that that would ask for you the next time they came into the store.
There were days when business was slow and we would be practically fighting over customers. More than once one of our younger co-workers would end up in tears in trying to compete with a couple of our seasoned sales gals. She was going to school and working part-time. I told her she better get out there and stand her ground. It took her a while but she finally quit letting them take all of the sales and had a few tricks of her own.
And The Magic Word Is Wacoal
The goal was to sell as many Wacoal bras and panties that you could. These are expensive, very well made and worth every penny. If you could get a customer to try on a Wacoal bra they would see the difference in the way it fits and supports the girls. These bras are wonderful for fuller figure ladies and anyone else that wants a good fitting bra.These sales were also sure to put us over our weekly sales quota. The difficult part was convincing the customers to buy one.
It surprised me as to how many women were wearing the wrong bra size and style of bra. Some of the ladies I fitted were still trying to squeeze into the same size bra that they wore in their high school days. It never dawned on them that after having babies or gaining a few pounds that you might want to get measured and find a good fitting bra. I would measure them and get them in the correct size and style bra. They could see the difference right away and would usually purchase two or three bras.
I had one customer who came in one day looking for a new bra. She wasn't sure of her size, so I took her to a fitting room and proceeded to measure her. She was wearing the oldest, most raggedy bra I had ever seen. She told me it was the only one she owned.
I always try to keep a straight face but this gal almost put me over the edge. I brought in a selection of different style bras for her to try on. I explained she should have a couple for everyday wear, a sports bra for exercising and something lacy for an evening out or just because.
As she was trying these on she explained that in taking care of her three kids and husband, she just didn't have time to shop for herself. I told her there were panties to match the bras that I had brought in if she was interested. She kept one of the new bras on, put her old one in the trash and ended up purchasing five bra and panty sets. She walked out happy and I had made a satisfying sale.
Shapewear-Hard To Fit
One of the most difficult undergarment to fit was shapewear and foundations. I remember my mom and her girdle. She always had a hard time putting it on.
These days there are all kinds of shapewear. From light control to full control depending on what you need the shapewear for. While one product might be the perfect fit and solution for one customer, it may not be the answer for another customer. Every woman has a different body type and problem areas.
I believe that shapewear should definitely be tried on in the store. I have helped many women in trying to find the right shapewear for them.This entails trying on more than a few items in the dressing room. Finding the right shapewear for an outfit you want to wear may be time consuming but it will be worth the effort.
After working there for over a year I had enough. I didn't want to measure any more boobs, straighten up panty tables or try to fit customers into shapewear. Most of the customers were pleasant and just wanted to be helped. Of course there were the hard to please ones that you could spend over an hour with and no matter what you did, nothing would please them. They would leave the store unhappy and you would be exhausted from trying to help them.
It was time to move on and I did without regrets.