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Barnes & Noble Bookseller Interview Questions & Reviews

Updated Jul 10, 2014
All Interviews Received Offers

Getting an Interview  

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43%
7%

Interview Experience  

69%
24%
6%

Interview Difficulty  

Average Difficulty
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1 person found this helpful

No Offer

Neutral Experience

Difficult Interview

Bookseller Interview

Bookseller

I applied through other source and the process took a day - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in August 2009.

Interview Details – I walked in and there was a group of 15 people sitting at the table waiting to be interviewed w/ me. We all waited for the three managers to come in and then they had us say our names and something describing ourselves. Then they told us to go pick out a book and come back to the table. The head mgr. walked up to each of us and asked us to sell her the book. I was very nervous. There were people there w/ writing degrees and much older more mature adults that probably were more appealing than me. It could also be that they lost my application, twice. Organizational skills anyone? I had been asked to stay after the group interview and have a private interview. Which raised my hopes. She asked me about my work experience in previous job situations. How did I handle a bad situation? How did I make the customer happy again? The head store mgr. was very interested in money. Couldn't care less about books, it was all business and numbers for her, like most corporate management, I assume, but she was detached, ingenuine. It's too bad though, because I know childrens books really well and I would have been great in that section. Their loss. On to the next opportunity.

Interview Question – Describe a situation in which you provided excellent customer service?   Answer Question


No Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Bookseller Interview

Bookseller

The process took 3 days - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in August 2009.

Interview Details – I interviewed with 3 different people who all asked the same questions. They were all nice, but the atmosphere is very corporate.

Interview Question – Why should I hire you?   Answer Question


Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Bookseller Interview

Bookseller

I applied in-person and the process took a day - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in September 2007.

Interview Details – I applied the old fashioned way -- paper application, filled out in the store and handed in the same day in person. For hourly positions, I believe that is the only way to apply to B&N. There is no online application, which is very different from most places. I don't know if it's necessarily better or worse, just different.

I received a callback within the next 48 hours to schedule an interview. On the day of my interview, I was given a brief tour of the store and a brief rundown of Bookseller responsibilities and requirements. I don't remember doing a lot of talking, just a lot of listening.

The person who interviewed me asked me the standard questions -- "Why do you want to work here? Can you meet all prescribed requirements with time/availability?" I didn't feel judged or immediately written off like at other places I've interviewed, where it seems as though the interviewer has already found their candidate and are just going through the motions and wasting everyone else's time. The interview was also very brief -- maybe 25 minutes, from handshake to handshake. I received another callback, stating I was hired within the next 48 hours after the interview. And the rest has been history...

Interview Question – Give me an experience you have with selling something.   View Answer

Negotiation Details – No room for negotiation whatsoever for my position/salary/hours.


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Bookseller Interview

Bookseller

I applied in-person and the process took a day - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in August 2008.

Interview Details – I interviewed with the assitant manager upon turning in an application. I was hired the same day.

Interview Questions


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Bookseller Interview

Bookseller

I applied in-person and the process took a day - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in February 2008.

Interview Details – super managers

Interview Questions

  • tell me about a time when you were unable to meet customer request   View Answer
  • tell me about a time when you took initiative   View Answer

Negotiation Details – flexibilty with schedule due to child care needs


Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Bookseller Interview

Bookseller
Sandy, UT

The process took 5 days - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in June 2009.

Interview Details – After filling out an application, I was called for an interview with a general manager that lasted about 30 minutes. Then, I was called back for a second interview with the store manager, which lasted a bit longer. The first interview had the usual questions (describe a challenge you have overcome, strengths and weaknesses), and the second interview had more specific questions.

Interview Question – Would you be willing to clean the bathroom if asked.   View Answer


2 people found this helpful

Accepted Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Bookseller Interview

Bookseller

I applied in-person and the process took 3 days - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in October 2009.

Interview Details – Booksellers generally are required to have one interview with a manager (assistant, receiving, or merchandising). If the manager approves he/she will pass the candidate on to the Store Manager for approval. The Store Manager can approve the hiring of booksellers and leads, however, management positions need to be approved by the District Manager as well as Store Manager.

As an applicant, dress professionally when dropping off your application. Management does take that into consideration. Jeans and shorts are not acceptable as they can not be worn on the book floor. Appearance plays a huge role. General retail experience is not the same as bookstore experience. The environments are very different, so attempting to play up your experience at a sub-par retail store will not get you through the door. Saying that you really need a job will not help you either.

It is not an easy job and they want candidates who have a true interest and passion in books and reading, not just someone looking for a job. It's a fast-paced environment, so you will need to be able to learn things quickly and become adept at them. Routines can change without notice, so you will need to be okay with change.

Interview Questions

Negotiation Details – They will not negotiate pay, unless you have over 5 years of experience in book selling.


No Offer

Positive Experience

Average Interview

Bookseller Interview

Bookseller
Miami, FL

The process took 1 week - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in April 2010.

Interview Details – Nothing imposing, I had an interview with one of the managers, who asked me a lot of questions about my job history, and was particularly interested in my experience of theft on the job, and how I dealt with someone, a customer or employee stealing items from my last job. He liked the fact that I had a history of taking care of books, knowing a little of ISBN, which is the like an I.D. number on books. He also asked about how I handled a conflict at work, and was interested in knowing about customer service experience, in person, or on the phone. It went pretty well, it had a casual feel to it, but still professional. It was about half an hour.

Interview Question – How did you handle an attempted theft at your previous job, and what actions did you do?   View Answer


Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Bookseller Interview

Bookseller

I applied in-person and the process took 1 week - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in May 2008.

Interview Details – Interviewed with two different people one-on-one and then received a phone interview and offer

Interview Question – What is your favorite book and why?   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – I had no negotiating power.


Accepted Offer

Neutral Experience

Average Interview

Bookseller Interview

Bookseller

The process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in August 2009.

Interview Details – I was referred by a friend that is an employee, it still took a long process of following up with the hiring manager. I met with the hiring manager informally once through my friend, and she asked a few questions. It took about a week for her to then schedule an interview with the general manager. The general manager went through the questions with me, and then offered me the position on the spot, pending a background check. The background check never fully happened. One of my references was contacted.

Interview Questions

  • how have you handled busy store conditions? how would you handle a difficult costumer?   Answer Question
  • what are you favorite books, and how would you recommend them to others?   Answer Question

Negotiation Details – no negotiation, I was just offered an hourly wage.

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