Callie On The Job: JCPenney - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Callie On The Job: JCPenney

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CARBONDALE -- If you haven't already started thinking about holiday shopping, now is the time. News 3's Callie Carroll learns what retail workers have to do to prepare for Christmas shoppers in this week's Callie on the Job.

For some people it's the ultimate test of bargaining, stamina and deal hunting. But for people working in retail, it's one of the busiest times of the year. 

Annette Bierman is the General Manager at JCPenney in University Mall. She says the Holiday Shopping season is the most exciting time of the year not only for the customers, but also for her team. 

"People are coming in from just having their holidays with their families so you get that excitement, that holiday cheer, all coming into the stores. A lot of the associates really enjoy the customer service aspect of it. Really getting to help customers find the perfect gift and the savings that they get to circle on the receipt is always a really fun thing to do too," Bierman said.

Like many retailers, the Carbondale JCPenney hires around 40 extra employees during the season, so several of the team members are just now getting trained and out on the floor. Just in time for the rush.

Bierman tells her new team members, "Don't be afraid to ask questions. Everybody was new at some point, so just jump right in and let the customers know, 'I'm new,' but we're never going to put them out there by themselves so you'll always have someone to go to."

Besides training, all store associates attend daily meetings to better understand the tasks each day, but Bierman says there's one thing that remains the same each day.

"Just remember the customer is the number one priority. We're here because of our customers, we have jobs because of them, so let's make sure that we're giving them our full attention," Bierman says.

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