The best way to discuss your salary expectations is to use your current earnings as an example. Be open, and honest. Transparency is the best choice when salary based questions arise.
"Currently, I earn a base salary of $45,000 per year plus a potential 20% annual bonus. Last year my earnings were $52,000, and I would like to stay in the same range or slightly higher."
"I am currently making $22/hour with two bonus opportunities. I am looking for compensation that is aligned with the role and provides an opportunity for growth."
Every employer should know how each staff member is best motivated. Talk to the interviewer about the variety of ways in which you find motivation on the job.
"I find it very motivating to work on a team with people who are doing their best work -- I'm a competitive person by nature, so I never want to be the weakest link on a team. If I'm surrounded by coworkers who are all focused on our team goals and their own personal goals, I'll do whatever I can to keep up with and exceed expectations and standards."
"I am best motivated through words of praise and recognition for a job well done. I do like to know that my efforts are noticed. In my current position, we have a leaderboard and I do like that concept because it creates a healthy bit of personal competition for me as well."
From our exemplary company culture to our commitment to diversity, there are endless things to love about TJ Maxx. What do you look for in a potential employer? What kinds of companies get your attention?
"I need to work for a company that is truly proactive about encouraging female and minority leadership, which is one of the reasons that TJ Maxx has stood out to me as I've researched potential employers. I love that 77% of the workforce is female and that 56% of workers are from minority groups -- it's clear that TJ Maxx doesn't just talk about diversity; they really embrace it and take proactive steps to ensure that the top talent is promoted and recognized."
"My ideal employer is one that brings charisma and passion to their work. I work best with organizations who have a penchant for learning and promote their employees based on performance."
At TJ Maxx, we buy from the biggest department stores, the best designers, and unique boutiques around the world to provide our customers with the best products at the lowest prices. The TJ Maxx way is different, and we're looking for passionate sales associates who believe in the TJ Maxx way. Talk to the interviewer about why you want to work for an off-price retailer like TJ Maxx.
"I've had my share of financial hardships in my life, but I've always known that I can turn to TJ Maxx when I need to look my best for job interviews, functions at my kids' schools, and every other situation that comes up. I believe in the off-price business model, and I'm excited to share the benefits of this model with customers by being a brand ambassador for TJ Maxx."
"I'm really passionate about the environment, and I love working in the retail industry but I know the toll that fast fashion takes on our world. Off-price retailers like TJ Maxx do so much to reduce waste and keep clothes out of landfills and in the hands of customers, where they belong. I want to work for a company like TJ Maxx so that I can continue to pursue my dream career and know that I'm doing my part for the environment at the same time."
Are you pretty flexible in your ability to work in most environments? Have you experienced a position where the atmosphere wasn't conducive to your productivity? Be sure to know the type of environment offered in this position before the interview.
"I worked in a call center for several years, and I was definitely ill-suited for that environment. I worked in a cubicle with many other employees, but we rarely even spoke to each other. It was very isolating, and I think my work performance suffered because I didn't feel motivated to do my best. I'm definitely more suited to the retail industry; I love the fast pace and the fact that no two days are the same."
"I can be productive in most work environments, so long as the mentality is positive and teamwork is encouraged. I cannot work in an environment that feels negative or toxic."
We want our sales associates to feel welcome at work -- that's why we encourage them to be themselves and bring their unique personalities to the job. Describe how your unique personality would be well-suited for this team.
"My friends always describe me as charismatic -- I think that's one of the reasons I work so well in sales. I have a lot of playful energy, and I love to make people feel special. I want every person I interact with to feel welcome and embraced; that's a really essential part of my personality."
"Authenticity is really important to me, so I'm glad to know that TJ Maxx wants its employees to be themselves. I'm a really fun-loving, energetic person, but that never stops me from working hard and exceeding my sales goals. If you give me a task, I'll execute it to perfection, and I'll have fun while I'm doing it."
We aim to support our talented sales associates by making TJ Maxx a great place to work so that they can focus on providing great customer service. We believe that associates who want to come to work and have an emotional connection to their job are fully engaged in doing their best -- talk to the interviewer about positive relationships you've had with managers in the past and describe what made these relationships so successful.
"When I first started out in retail, I felt really out of my depth. I had been working primarily desk jobs with limited interactions with others for several years, so the retail industry was a huge change. My manager was so patient and kind, and I really felt like she was invested in my success. She took time to train me in areas where I struggled, and I never once felt like she was frustrated with me or that I was expected to understand everything all at once."
"I have worked with a wide range of personalities and management styles with great success. If I could express a preference, I feel that I am best with a manager who allows me autonomy while still investing time in me through mentorship and training. Can you describe the management style here?"
Attracting top talent is just the start. At TJ Maxx, we believe it is our responsibility to train and mentor our associates for long-term success. From the top down, our leaders consider career development and teaching an absolute priority. What are your career objectives? How can this position at TJ Maxx help you achieve your career goals?
"I've worked in restaurant service and more recently in an IT call center, but I haven't found exactly what I'm looking for yet. I'm hoping to find a position that strikes a balance between the fast-paced setting of a restaurant job and the focused customer service and relationship-building of my current job. I think a sales position at TJ Maxx may be just the thing I've been looking for -- I'm excited to work in a dynamic customer-service role again and also use what I've learned at my current job to build relationships."
"This job will fit perfectly surrounding my school schedule. I hope once I complete my education that I can be given full-time hours for the summer. I am excited to work for TJ Maxx because of the flexibility you offer students, as well as the growth potential."
At TJ Maxx, our culture places great value on relationships, which has been a key to our success since our founding in 1977. We encourage our employees to form strong relationships with each other, and we think that healthy competition is one ingredient to a creating a successful team. Talk to the interviewer about competitive workplaces you've encountered in the past.
"My current sales position is highly commission based, so my colleagues and I are quite competitive. Despite being competitive, we have a great work environment where we help each other when someone is struggling to meet their quota. We coach each other on sales techniques and share success stories. The result has been a positive work environment with healthy competition."
"Last year I worked at a high-end jewelry store where sales goals were intense, and the rewards were high. I am geared for healthy competition, so when we had contests, it greatly motivated me. I ended up winning 7 of the 12 contests! I won an iPad, cash incentives, and concert tickets. It was great."
At TJ Maxx, we strive for a workplace where our associates feel valued for their diversity of thought and engaged with our mission. We're always open to creative ideas, so talk to the interviewer about any times you have recommended a change to your employer. How was your idea received?
"A few years ago, I was working for a small business that didn't have a marketing plan of any kind -- we had a strong customer base but weren't experiencing any growth. I did some research after work for a few nights and then drafted a marketing strategy for the company owners. We met to discuss it, made some changes to my suggestions, and then they gave me full ownership of the project. Within a few months after implementing my strategy, we started seeing a huge increase in customers."
"The store where I currently work is a family run shop where they operated based on trust and didn't have a loss prevention plan. We were having some problems with theft because of it. I suggested that we install a couple of cameras inside the store to deter anyone from stealing. So far, we have seen a 56% decline in the overall loss."
We fully appreciate that our talented team of TJ Maxx store associates bring our business to life, and we aim to support them by making TJ Maxx a great place to work. We want each employee to know the significance of their contributions, so talk to the interviewer about some ways that you appreciate receiving recognition for your accomplishments.
"I had a manager once who made it a habit to give employees handwritten notes of appreciation when she thought they had done a particularly good job. It was a small acknowledgement, but those notes always meant a lot to me -- it showed that my manager saw me as a valuable member of the team and took time out of her busy day to acknowledge me."
"I am very much an over-achiever and find that the best way for me to be recognized for a job well done is through words of kindness and recognition. I am easily encouraged, and the best reward for me is to know that my hard work is noticed."
Most retail positions require a wide range of hours that may include evenings, weekends, holidays, overtime, and split shifts. Assure the interviewer that you can commit to a wide range of hours. If there is anything in your schedule that may hinder your availability, be sure to address this.
"I am happy to offer a flexible schedule, and to work overtime as needed. I do take an evening college course on Tuesdays and Thursdays, so I would not be available those days, after 5 PM."
"I understand that this role will include working evenings, weekends, and holidays. I am available to work anytime and am happy to work overtime as well."
Whether you're just starting out in the retail industry or you're a seasoned professional, TJ Maxx is looking for sales associates who know how to leverage their talents and experience to create great customer experiences. Talk to the interviewer about how one or two of your previous jobs have made you well-suited for a position with TJ Maxx.
"I haven't yet worked in the retail industry, but I've had several customer-service related jobs. Most recently, I've worked as a receptionist at a dental office, and I have definitely learned a lot about giving clients great service, being prepared to answer their questions, and adapting quickly to new tasks and changes. I'm confident that I can transfer these skills into my work at TJ Maxx, and I'm eager to learn more about customer service in the retail industry."
"I have worked in retail for the past eight years. My most challenging position was with Company ABC. I found it so challenging because it was a different industry than I was accustomed. I learned a great deal during that time. This position was also my favorite because it was such a great challenge. I like to be pushed beyond my boundaries. It keeps me motivated to be better."
At TJ Maxx, we acknowledge and appreciate that our store associates are the backbone of our business: that's why we work hard to ensure that our associates are Welcomed, Valued, and Engaged. Talk to the interviewer about your response to these values.
"I've worked at retailers in the past who don't make me feel engaged or valued, so I'm really grateful to see that TJ Maxx takes those things really seriously. I want to work for a company where I know I can truly be myself and bring my creative ideas to work with me. It's very important to me that I feel valued by my employer."
"If I have an emotional connection to the work I'm doing, you'll always get the best work from me. That's why I think it's great that TJ Maxx works so hard to create a great environment for its employees so that I can build relationships with my coworkers and customers -- so that I can really do my best work."
Since its foundation in 1977, TJ Maxx has been strengthened by our four pillars of corporate responsibility: a healthy workplace, a vibrant community, environmental sustainability, and responsible business practices. Which of these pillars stands out to you most? How would you use these pillars as a support in your role?
"I'm really invested in my community, so I'm grateful that TJ Maxx is invested in it, as well. I appreciate that they enrich the lives of the members of our community in really proactive ways. I would embody this community spirit at work by building relationships with my customers and my coworkers so that I can do my part to truly make the store feel like a small community in our neighborhood."
"Environmental sustainability is very important to me -- I can't work for a company that isn't doing it's best to limit its environmental footprint and build a better world. I'm eager to learn more about TJ Maxx's sustainability efforts, and I would love to pass on that information to customers, as well. I think informed consumers can change the world, so I'm eager to help inform people wherever I can."
At TJ Maxx, we're proud of our high retention rate -- in fact, over 59% of our managers at the Assistant VP level and above have been with the company for 10+ years, which means that we hire and retain the best talent. However, turnover does happen, and it's important that our sales associates are ready to step in to cover shifts. Are you willing to accept extra shifts if your manager needs assistance at the last minute?
"I'm just starting out in retail, but I really believe I want to create a full career in this industry. I have a lot to learn, so I'm eager to take on any extra shifts that are available so that I can get as much experience in this industry as possible."
"I am more than willing to cover a shift for a co-worker if I am able. I don't mind accepting overtime hours and do consider myself to be a team player."
Retail and customer service based roles will often require diplomacy when it comes to working with the public. Discuss with the interviewer how you would handle an aggressive customer.
"If I had a customer who was being aggressive and disrespectful, I would calmly but firmly ask them to calm down. If security needed to be called, I would do so. Everyone needs to remain respectful, and I would not hesitate to ask a customer to offer that respect, in return."
"Most places that I have worked have procedures in place for these kinds of scenarios, and I am happy to follow the procedures put in place by T.J. Maxx."
At TJ Maxx, making our associates feel welcomed in our stores is an important part of ensuring our success as a company. We encourage our employees to bring their whole self to work and provide their unique perspective on our business. Talk to the interviewer about some qualities that make you well-suited for this position with TJ Maxx.
"I'm an extremely professional person. The workplace is for work, and in the retail industry, there's always something to do, even when there aren't many customers in the store. I balance my professionalism with my friendly, outgoing personality -- I think it's important to have fun and work hard at the same time. I also just love the fashion industry and am always on top of the latest trends, so I'm very confident that I can help the TJ Maxx customer find everything that she's looking for."
"I have a lot of qualities that transfer well into a retail-based position. The top ones would include my strong organization skills, my ability to have a conversation with anyone comfortably, and my solid work ethic/level of honesty."
At TJ Maxx, we appreciate that our associates are the backbone of our business: that's why it's so important to us to attract ambitious and talented individuals, offer them challenging assignments, and support their career growth. We offer leadership development opportunities for employees who show promise -- and 50% of our leadership development participants have received promotions. Talk to the interviewer about any interest you have in taking on leadership roles in the future.
"The Leaders Developing Leaders program sounds incredible -- I would love to participate in that program in general, but especially if it means a high likelihood of moving forward with the company. I'm on a mission to build a retail career, so I'm looking forward to any leadership opportunities that come my way through TJ Maxx."
"I would be very excited about obtaining a role in leadership within TJ Maxx in the future. I am prepared to express my interest through hard work and taking on leadership duties as you feel I am ready."
At TJ Maxx, we keep our merchandise organized and all store areas clean so that our customers can truly enjoy their shopping experience without the distraction of dirty floors, dusty products, and disorganized departments. Talk to the interviewer about your experience cleaning and organizing your workspace.
"I don't mind cleaning tasks at all -- in fact, I kind of like to dust, vacuum, and mop at the end of the night. My current manager is always thanking me for volunteering to take on cleaning duties that my coworkers don't want to do, like taking out the trash and scrubbing the bathroom."
"I'm a very organized person -- I even have a bit of a habit of organizing merchandise when I'm at the supermarket or out running errands! You can rest assured that I would keep my workspace extremely tidy."
At TJ Maxx, we know fashion -- and it's important that our customers see our associates as fashion inspiration on a budget. Are you comfortable adhering to a business-casual dress code in your role here?
"I wear a uniform at my current job, so a business casual dress code would be a great step up for me! I'm happy to adhere to any dress code policies."
"I think that dress codes are a great way to provide a feeling of unity in the workplace; plus, they make it that much easier to get ready for work!"
Strong math skills are an asset in any retail based role. Assure the interviewer that you are comfortable with the math associated with handling cash transactions and performing inventory counts.
"I did very well in math during High School and am comfortable with the math skills required when it comes to accepting cash, balancing a cash float, and performing inventory-related tasks."
"My math skills are strong, and I am confident that I can meet your expectations when it comes to accepting payment from customers."
At TJ Maxx, we take loss prevention seriously: it's one of the ways we ensure that we can continue passing on exceptional savings to our customers. Talk to the interviewer about how you would respond if you suspected that a coworker was stealing money or product from the store.
"I've unfortunately been in this position before, and it was very uncomfortable. I hated knowing that I was playing a role in a coworker potentially being fired, but I knew that the right thing to do was to go straight to my manager and let her know what I had observed. There's only one right thing to do in that situation, and I would do the same again."
"My reaction to employee theft would differ if I were a retail associate or a retail manager. If I were a manager and caught an employee stealing, I would terminate them immediately. If I were an associate, I would report the incident according to company protocol. I would avoid approaching the employee as I would not want to make it a personal issue."
Our customers are our top priority, so we welcome returns within 30 days with a register receipt. Unfortunately, many retailers are subject to fraudulent return activity, which is why we use a refund verification system to process and track returns in order to combat fraudulent activity. Talk to the interviewer about how you would handle a situation where a customer's return was flagged as fraudulent.
"The process at my current store for this situation is to provide the customer with a direct number for our fraud department and let them know that our system cannot process their return. I always make sure not to make the customer feel that I suspect them. What is the process for this situation at TJ Maxx?"
"I have some dispute resolution training from my previous retail position and fully believe that flexibility needs to be offered in extreme situations."
At TJ Maxx, we believe that value is a combination of fashion, brand, quality, and price -- we buy from all kinds of vendors to make sure that our customers are receiving the best of these four factors. Talk to the interviewer about what makes you interested in being a part of the TJ Maxx family.
"I'm interested in working for TJ Maxx because they have a business model that makes practical sense and the longevity and stability to back it up. I'm really looking to build a career in this industry, and I would love to do that with a company as stable and sturdy as TJ Maxx."
"I'm a fashion-lover and mother of four, so I've been shopping at TJ Maxx for years -- it's my one-stop-shop for everything I could need for myself and kids. I love that I don't have to sacrifice my love of fashion to stay on a budget. I love the off-price business model, and I would be excited to be on a team that makes their customers feel valued, just like I've always felt valued at TJ Maxx as a shopper."
At TJ Maxx, we strive for an environment where every customer feels welcomed when they walk in the door. Talk to the interviewer about your personal customer service strategy.
"I love meeting new people, so it's easy for me to make customers feel welcome. I try to greet every customer I see and offer to give them a hand, help them find something they're looking for, or let them know I'm available if there's anything I can do to make their shopping experience better."
"I have a rule always to treat my customers how I would want treatment in a store or establishment. Customer service is vital to a company's success."
T.J. Maxx, sometimes referred to as TJ's, is an American department store chain owned by TJX Companies. With more than 1,000 stores, T.J. Maxx is a major clothes retailer in the United States. Under the name T.K. Maxx it operates stores throughout the United Kingdom, Ireland, Germany and Poland. By the end of 2012, there were 343 stores in Europe.
The company is part of the TJX Companies, which also owns HomeGoods/HomeSense, and 'off-price' retail chains Marshalls in the United States and Canada, and Winners in Canada. It offers men's, women's and children's apparel and shoes, as well as other areas such as toys, bath and beauty, accessories and home products ranging from furniture to kitchen utensils.