Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > General Cycling Discussion
Reload this Page >

Bike shop interview but donít know a lot about bikes.

Notices
General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

Bike shop interview but donít know a lot about bikes.

Old 06-04-19, 07:15 AM
  #1  
kevinabbot
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Posts: 58
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 44 Post(s)
Liked 4 Times in 4 Posts
Bike shop interview but donít know a lot about bikes.

So I am trying to get a job at my local bike shop for the summer so I can learn more about bikes. I have an interview today and I think I am going to seem stupid.

I donít know too much about bikes right now. I know the (main) parts of a bike (derailer, drivetrains, shifters etc.), but I donít know much about like the different models of each part and like what each model of a bike has them. Like I donít know much about what each model of a certain bike has like I have no clue what parts are on like a F12 etc.

I am kinda scared because I applied for sales and I donít know how much they expect me to know. I said that I didnít know much on my application but still..

What can I do to prepare for the interview today on the cycling knowledge side of things.
kevinabbot is offline  
Old 06-04-19, 07:19 AM
  #2  
FBOATSB 
Senior Member
 
FBOATSB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Central Indiana
Posts: 1,829

Bikes: Old Stuff

Mentioned: 25 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 694 Post(s)
Liked 146 Times in 113 Posts
You are just going to have to be honest and tell them why you want the job. "To learn about bikes." You can't fool them otherwise. Good luck.
FBOATSB is offline  
Old 06-04-19, 07:28 AM
  #3  
Skipjacks
Senior Member
 
Skipjacks's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: Mid Atlantic / USA
Posts: 2,115

Bikes: 2017 Specialized Crosstrail / 2013 Trek Crossrip Elite

Mentioned: 43 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1001 Post(s)
Liked 230 Times in 152 Posts
If you know what a derailleur is, odds are you know more about bikes than 90% of the customers.

The VAST MAJORITY of people who ride bikes don't know the first thing about them. The people here in this message board who ride every day and have old bike parts in every room of their house are not representational of the average weekend rider.

So not being a full expert may not be a deal killer.

This is for the typical local shop that caters to the entry level consumer. If it's a specialty shop that caters to high end shoppers looking for $4000 bikes, then the customers will know more than you do and they likely won't hire you.

You just need to be honest about what you do know and that you are a quick learner and willing to put in the work to learn.

Keep in mind it's a sales position. You are selling yourself at the interview. If you can sell yourself to a bike shop with the flaw of not knowing bikes, you can sell a bike to a customer.
Skipjacks is offline  
Likes For Skipjacks:
Old 06-04-19, 08:24 AM
  #4  
fietsbob
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Posts: 43,599

Bikes: 8

Mentioned: 197 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7607 Post(s)
Liked 1,309 Times in 822 Posts
Big store ? pricing and stocking and sweeping cleaning and display arrangement , guiding customers ..
to the part of the store to find the things they seek,

and watching out for shoplifting, are not mechanical jobs.. more general retail ..

Bonus if you can make websites and post store specials on social media..






....
fietsbob is offline  
Old 06-04-19, 08:27 AM
  #5  
Maelochs
Senior Member
 
Maelochs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 12,684

Bikes: 2015 Workswell 066, 2014 Dawes Sheila, 1983 Cannondale 500, 1984 Raleigh Olympian, 2007 Cannondale Rize 4, 2017 Fuji Sportif 1 LE

Mentioned: 142 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6069 Post(s)
Liked 956 Times in 542 Posts
If it is a smallish shop, personal connection means more than a packed (or padded) resume. Show them that you are eager and willing to learn whatever you need to in order to do a good job for them because you really like cycling and really want to work there. Any smart boss would rather hire a motivated trainee than a bored pseudo-expert who probably thinks he knows how to do everything and won't want to fit into the shop's workflow.
Maelochs is offline  
Old 06-04-19, 08:29 AM
  #6  
texaspandj
Senior Member
 
texaspandj's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Heart Of Texas
Posts: 4,101

Bikes: '85, '86 , '87 , '88 , '89 Centurion Dave Scott Ironman.

Mentioned: 99 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1529 Post(s)
Liked 447 Times in 302 Posts
Hopefully you're a quick learner. If you are, State That. Good luck.
texaspandj is offline  
Old 06-04-19, 08:44 AM
  #7  
bakerjw
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: NE Tennessee
Posts: 917

Bikes: Giant TCR/Surly Karate Monkey/Foundry FireTower/Curtlo Tandem

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 169 Post(s)
Liked 82 Times in 60 Posts
Okay... "tongue in cheek" comment.

If they have mostly doubles, preach to customers how doubles are the way to go.
If they have mostly triples, preach to customers how triplesare the way to go.

As stated above. Be honest. A good attitude goes a long way in retail.
bakerjw is offline  
Old 06-04-19, 09:14 AM
  #8  
audiomagnate
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: The South
Posts: 147

Bikes: Cannondale Six 5

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 42 Post(s)
Liked 23 Times in 18 Posts
Originally Posted by Skipjacks View Post
If you know what a derailleur is, odds are you know more about bikes than 90% of the customers.

The VAST MAJORITY of people who ride bikes don't know the first thing about them. The people here in this message board who ride every day and have old bike parts in every room of their house are not representational of the average weekend rider.

So not being a full expert may not be a deal killer.

This is for the typical local shop that caters to the entry level consumer. If it's a specialty shop that caters to high end shoppers looking for $4000 bikes, then the customers will know more than you do and they likely won't hire you.

You just need to be honest about what you do know and that you are a quick learner and willing to put in the work to learn.

Keep in mind it's a sales position. You are selling yourself at the interview. If you can sell yourself to a bike shop with the flaw of not knowing bikes, you can sell a bike to a customer.
Alright that's creepy. How did you know I have old bike parts in every room of the house? Anyway, to the OP, don't try to BS them. Sales is all about personality, if they think you're a good fit they'll hire you, if not there are lots of other stores.
audiomagnate is offline  
Old 06-04-19, 09:32 AM
  #9  
hillyman
WALSTIB
 
hillyman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Posts: 1,798
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 280 Post(s)
Liked 378 Times in 180 Posts
I'd look up what brands the shop carrys and take a crash course on bike reviews on YouTube right now.
To be good at sales takes a Type A personality so be positive.
__________________
www.bikeleague.org


Last edited by hillyman; 06-04-19 at 10:06 AM.
hillyman is offline  
Old 06-04-19, 10:10 AM
  #10  
tkamd73 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Menomonee Falls, WI
Posts: 1,009

Bikes: 1984 Schwinn Supersport, 1988 Trek 400t, 1977 Trek TX900, 1983 Bianchi Champione del Mondo, 1986 Trek 400 Elance, 1978 Raleigh Supercourse, 1991 PDG Paramount OS, 1971 Schwinn Sports Tourer, 1985 Trek 670

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 336 Post(s)
Liked 290 Times in 183 Posts
Lots of small businesses are desperate for help these days. If your warm, upright and breathing, your probably in. They can’t afford to pay for experience, so I doubt it matters much. Biggest employment disqualifyer these days is the drug test, most small businesses can’t afford to pop for that, so not much of an issue.
Tim
tkamd73 is offline  
Old 06-04-19, 10:42 AM
  #11  
livedarklions
I'm cross-chained
 
livedarklions's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Location: New England
Posts: 8,245

Bikes: Serotta Atlanta; 1994 Specialized Allez Pro; Giant OCR A1

Mentioned: 49 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4297 Post(s)
Liked 3,309 Times in 1,884 Posts
Originally Posted by hillyman View Post
I'd look up what brands the shop carrys and take a crash course on bike reviews on YouTube right now.
To be good at sales takes a Type A personality so be positive.
+1

He already told them on the application that he isn't very knowledgeable, so looking like he studied a bit for the interview would definitely show initiative.

Might be a good idea if you can learn enough to ask some intelligent questions about the bikes they sell--that could tell them that you really are anxious to learn, and if they get annoyed by being asked questions, you probably don't want to work there anyway.
livedarklions is offline  
Old 06-04-19, 11:41 AM
  #12  
Wilfred Laurier
SeŮor Member
 
Wilfred Laurier's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 5,050
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 633 Post(s)
Liked 276 Times in 201 Posts
Originally Posted by tkamd73 View Post
Biggest employment disqualifyer these days is the drug test, most small businesses can’t afford to pop for that, so not much of an issue.
Tim
I can't imagine how hilariously empty the shops I have worked at would be if they drug tested. The thought of it makes me laugh.

Sadly, that intrusion into people's personal lives is somehow considered normal in some places. The thought of it makes me cry.
Wilfred Laurier is offline  
Likes For Wilfred Laurier:
Old 06-04-19, 11:45 AM
  #13  
wgscott
Occam's Rotor
 
wgscott's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 7,082
Mentioned: 61 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2366 Post(s)
Liked 2,166 Times in 1,073 Posts
It is all about sincerity.

Once you learn to fake that, you have it made.
wgscott is offline  
Likes For wgscott:
Old 06-04-19, 01:12 PM
  #14  
HerrKaLeun
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Madison, WI
Posts: 1,912

Bikes: Giant Toughroad SLR1 and Motobecane Sturgis NX

Mentioned: 10 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 895 Post(s)
Liked 216 Times in 162 Posts
Do this
HerrKaLeun is online now  
Old 06-04-19, 01:25 PM
  #15  
tkamd73 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Menomonee Falls, WI
Posts: 1,009

Bikes: 1984 Schwinn Supersport, 1988 Trek 400t, 1977 Trek TX900, 1983 Bianchi Champione del Mondo, 1986 Trek 400 Elance, 1978 Raleigh Supercourse, 1991 PDG Paramount OS, 1971 Schwinn Sports Tourer, 1985 Trek 670

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 336 Post(s)
Liked 290 Times in 183 Posts
Originally Posted by Wilfred Laurier View Post
I can't imagine how hilariously empty the shops I have worked at would be if they drug tested. The thought of it makes me laugh.

Sadly, that intrusion into people's personal lives is somehow considered normal in some places. The thought of it makes me cry.
I agree with the first part of your reply, However, I gladly embrace the intrusion, and that it is the required norm, relating to the place I work. So do all the passengers in the back of the plane, Iím betting.
Tim
tkamd73 is offline  
Likes For tkamd73:
Old 06-04-19, 04:55 PM
  #16  
TiHabanero
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 3,354
Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1195 Post(s)
Liked 493 Times in 266 Posts
Having hired and fired bike shop employees, I can tell you attitude is the key. The second best sales person I had was a girl who knew absolutely nothing about bikes, but I loved having her attitude in the shop. She was able to sell swamp land to a desert dog. The best sales person I had was a kid with a photographic memory. Never forgot a name, what they bought or why they came in last time they were there. Dang nabit, he was really good.

Don't BS the interviewer, the good ones smell BS a mile away. Don't BS the sales or service staff, they know what is up. BE HUMBLE. You don't know squat compared to these guys. Always desire to learn, learn, learn, and retain it. DO EXPECT to sweep floors, take out trash, wash windows, mop up everything, hang clothing, clean the bathroom every single day. BE HUMBLE and do it without complaint.

If you don't have tough skin, don't do it as shops have personalities much like military organizations, and you will be tested to see what you are emotionally made of.
TiHabanero is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
bici_mania
Bicycle Mechanics
31
07-30-19 06:18 PM
fidodido
General Cycling Discussion
72
07-02-19 08:45 PM
Senior Ryder 00
Classic & Vintage
22
11-09-17 10:10 AM
cyclomaniac
General Cycling Discussion
16
04-02-14 11:20 AM
pablosnazzy
General Cycling Discussion
27
09-19-10 08:07 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.