T Nation

Anyone Know a Vitamin Shoppe Manager?


#1

Has anyone here ever personally managed a Vitamin Shoppe or know someone who has?

I have an interview for a Vitamin shop in Chicago on Thursday for the position of store manager. Applied for it last night for the hell of it since i have management/supervisory experience both in and out of retail and im sick to death of my current job. Well, they called me only about 15 hours later.

I am positive it wont be able to match my current pay. From everything im seeing online such as Glassdoor, it seems the average salary is about 45k, for Chicago area its about 47K. This is less than ideal but it would be tolerable should they make me an offer and these numbers prove accurate.

The reason i would consider the pay cut is three-fold;

-Im fed up with working for United Airlines (It is as bad as people say) and want out of the aviation industry.

-The commute to this Vitamin Shoppe would be less than half the commute i make now. I drive a truck with a V8 so this is big. Plus i hate sitting in traffic for an hour on my way home.

-I have a genuine interest and solid knowledge-base of the health and nutrition industry. I have absolutely no interest in doing IT logistics for airlines. So theres that.

So just wondering if anyone has any experience regarding what its like to be a store manager there, if itd be worth leaving my current job for, and if they can verify that the pay is in the mid to upper 40's. I have a couple other promising things in the works but they are going to take longer to develop so i was thinking for the sake of my sanity and happiness, this might be a nice/tolerable change for a year or so until then.

Any thoughts/advice? Really dont have any experience working retail for a large company like this, my last retail management job was a privately owned high-end bike shop, i assume things will be quite different. Just wanna know what im getting into.


#2

I was an assistant manager at a Vity Shoppe (one of the largest locations in the area), like, 13ish years ago, so I'm not sure how much carryover there'd be to any info. Back in my day (and yes, I always wanted to say that), button-down shirt and tie was the uniform, not like the custom shirts they have now. I remember the day we got official nametags sent from corporate. That was neat, because prior to that the manager was printing her own from home and giving them to us to wear.

It was pretty basic retail stuff though. The store manager answered to a district manager, who answered to a regional manager. Deliveries were received once or twice a week, so shelves were restocked pretty often (a hassle, especially with customers in-store). There were no commissions on any products, but I think both GNC and VS now have commissions on regularly-rotating brands/spotlight products.

Sorry it's probably not much help, but if you can handle heavy/high volume customer interactions (especially dealing with uninformed, or worse, misinformed customers) in a retail environment, you should be fine. Old guys will tell you about their prostate health. Young dudes will tell you what you should take to get swole like them (yes, I'd expect them to tell you too. Everyone's an expert), and local trainers will come into the store asking you to give their business cards to customers, sometimes offering you a few bucks.


#3

Thanks. Yeah sounds pretty typical retail. On that end there's absolutely nothing i cant handle im sure. I would ask you how your manager liked it and all but from what i understand the company and upper management has changed drastically since you worked there so her experience could vary wildly from what mine might be.

If the 47k average a year is accurate for chicago area, it would be worth the pay cut for the change of scenery, easier commute and just to get me the hell out of United Airlines. Ive read a couple reports of people getting offers under 40 which anything near there is just way to drastic a pay cut for me.

Like i said, im not really sweating it cause i just sort of applied for the hell of it last night, right now im considering any opportunity though that seems like it might make me a little happier in my day-to-day.

Thanks again.