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How Working as a Grocery Clerk can make you a Customer Success Specialist

Knowing what products the customers will want before they buy them is one of the most important skills I picked up during my time in grocery.

Kobe Carbajal
Kobe Carbajal

What are the marks of great customer success? Well, I think it’s a combination of several different things. It’s a combination of proactivity, personability, and knowledge. And just as luck would have it. Working as a grocery clerk has given me the exact building blocks needed to be the best customer success representative I could be.

What are those said blocks exactly? Well, why don’t I just share some of the tenants that gave me those needed skills?

Be “World-famous friendly”

Now, being friendly and personable is probably the most crucial tenant we have to follow. It doesn’t matter how flashy your product is or how well it’s marketed. If your customer isn’t happy with the service, it’s very unlikely they’ll be a returning customer. The act of making your customer feel heard and appreciated is the lifeblood of our industry. It not only makes the customer feel nice and happy, but it ensures their loyalty.

And would you know it, That just so happens to be one of the keystones to customer success!

Taking the necessary steps to ensure your customers are happy with your company and product is vital to any business’s success and is something I learned early on in my time as a clerk.

Have the most knowledgeable staff


Next up on the list is the most knowledgeable staff; now, this is probably the second most crucial tenant we had to follow. The amount of information about your product, or in my case store, that  you have to have is significant.

From the beginning of my time at my store, I was encouraged to spend as much time as possible learning to in’s and out’s of as many departments as I could. I did this to try to understand how all of my store functions and protocols, making me a Jack-of-all-trades and an irreplaceable member of our staff. Giving me the ability to help any customer with pretty much all their questions and troubles no matter what department of the store I was in.

Least amount of-out-stocks

The idea that you can’t sell something that you don’t have on the shelf is something I learned very early in my grocery career. Now, the tenet refers to the idea that if we have something in our stores' backstock and not on our shelves, we fail our customers. This is something that I’ve taken to heart.

You might think this is a bit of a stretch, but this is another vital tool I’ve gained in my time in grocery. It is a tool that has given me a great foundation to be a fantastic customer success specialist.

And this is why.

One of the stark differences between customer service and customer success.

Customer service mainly consists of waiting for your customer to come to you. While customer success has you fix any potential problems before they happen.

Having the least amount of out of stocks is one way I’ve become more proactive in my activities.

While working a production/stocking shift, you only have a set amount of time to make sure the store is entirely stocked. Since it is impossible to stock everything simultaneously, you have to prioritize the products that the customers tend to buy more of and know what products to let ride.

This forced me to be more proactive and determine what our customers will want before the shelves are empty.

Knowing what products the customers will want before they buy them is one of the most important skills I picked up during my time in grocery.


So, believe it or not, working in the drab and mundane world of a grocery clerk does actually does lay the groundwork for an excellent customer success specialist. With a combination of personal skills, proactivity, and knowledge, I have gained the necessary tools needed to be an excellent customer success specialist.

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Kobe Carbajal Twitter

An eternal student of all that people, an amateur fine art enthusiast, and a fan of personal development. Seeking to understand anything and everything around me.