Barnes & Noble Interview Questions

Updated Sep 22, 2014
Updated Sep 22, 2014
296 Interview Reviews

Interview Experience

Interview Experience

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Getting an Interview

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Candidate Interview Reviews

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  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Bookseller Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied in-person. The process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Barnes & Noble.

    Interview Details

    Asked me what kind of books I like to read, my leadership experience, and an example of how I handled a difficult situation. One-on-one interview, called my current employer as a reference. Only had one interview.

    Interview Questions
    • Loved the "what types of books you read" question.   View Answer
    Negotiation Details
    Accepted as seasonal for the summer than hired as part-time
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  2.  

    Bookseller Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2 months - interviewed at Barnes & Noble.

    Interview Details

    One August, I applied online to four nearby Barnes & Nobles. One called back and I was officially hired in late October after interviews with the store manager, assistant store manager, and merch manager. I also had a fourth interview with the cafe manager because I told them I'd be happy to work in a cafe position too. The hiring process seemed like a long drag to me because it turned out to be just an open application and they were not in demand for booksellers when I applied. The interview went smoothly and the questions asked were the expected ones. Questions were not only about my work experience, but also about my reading and coffee interests, school, etc. I was told to wait up to two weeks for a background check. The two weeks passed so I called back and was told they had yet to get in touch with my listed references. About a week later, I was in the store office signing paperwork and ready for orientation. I was hired as one of four part time temporary seasonal employees, three of which (including myself) later became permanent after the holidays. One piece of advice for prospective employees is that the application is online. I've seen too many times some fine people walking in and asking to drop off their resume or pick up an application. These people are told (at least in my store) to go online because all the resources are there. Good luck!

    Interview Questions
    • No difficult, technical, or curveball questions except when I was asked what I like about B&N coffee, which I didn't understand because they serve Starbucks coffee and it is no different. I pulled through and was hired.   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview
  3.  

    Cafe Server Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Chicago, IL
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Chicago, IL
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 1 week - interviewed at Barnes & Noble.

    Interview Details

    I applied online for a part-time position. Received a phone call in which I was asked a few questions and then offered an interview the next day. For the first interview, we reviewed my past employment history. The interviewer then put me through their standard behavioral test in which I was asked a lot of scenario questions and was supposed to give an example of a time I have faced that in my own career. At the end of the interview, the interviewer set up another interview for me with the store manager. Between interviews, they had a background check done and called up my referrals.

     The second interview was pretty quick- not really sure what the point was to that one. Was asked some questions liked "do you buy from Barnes and Nobles?" "Do you like coffee?" "Go to starbucks" "What do you expect from Starbucks?" (Worded really strangely...I wasn't sure what he was getting at with that question).

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Average Interview
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  5.  

    Bookseller Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Lincolnshire, IL
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Lincolnshire, IL
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Barnes & Noble.

    Interview Details

    I applied online. I had a phone screening with one of the merch managers before setting up an in person with the assistant store manager. Interview went really well and we set up an interview with the store manager. In the mean time they ran a background check on me and contacted my references. By the time I had my final interview they said they were ready to hire me but had only been able to talk to one of my references. I gave them another name and within a half hour I was hired!

    Interview Questions
    Negotiation Details
    There wasn't one. They offered me the standard starting pay
    Accepted Offer
    Easy Interview
  6.  

    Cafe Lead Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Barnes & Noble.

    Interview Details

    The interview process was incredibly easy. All the usual questions were asked- 'what would you do if you saw a coworker doing something incorrectly?' 'describe a time you went above and beyond to provide excellent customer service' etc...
    You are interviewed by the cafe manager and then either the SM or one of the ASMs. The whole process from applying to being notified that I was hired took about 3 weeks.

    Interview Questions
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview
  7.  

    Part Time Book Seller Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Los Angeles, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Los Angeles, CA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 1 week - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in September 2014.

    Interview Details

    The entire process took a week and half (from application to job offer). I must have applied right when they were sorting through applications as the initial call came in a couple of days after I applied. There were three interviews.

    The initial Group Interview was unexpectedly interesting. I was confused by why they would choose to do a group interview with so many people, but it turned out to be almost fun. One manager lead the interview, a second just observed, chiming in as they continued their own work. It was very informative, so even if you didn't move past this round, you could certainly apply to another store more prepared to be an awesome candidate. We were asked to sell our favorite book. I would say being able to talk confidently about it is more important than what book you choose.

    I received a call for a second, private interview later that afternoon. Of the near dozen candidates, I am not sure how many others moved on. At least one, because I saw her when I went in for my second interview two days later. At the group interview, we were all given some brochures to read about their latest Nook and the Memberships they sell. We were told to be prepared to sell one or both of them should we get a private interview. The manager asked some standard questions, "How do you deal with stress? Angry customers? Why B&N? Explain your last job/experience" (I hadn't worked retail in years, so I appreciated being asked about how my current skills relate). I was not asked to sell a product. Between my answers and the questions I asked, we probably just ran out of time. I was told a little more about what to expect from the store before she mentioned that there would be another interview if I make it past this round. I was surprised by how thoroughly they vet each new hire.

    I received a call for the third and final interview later that afternoon. I was told to definitely have my sales pitch for the products ready. I met with the store manager five days after my second interview. This was the quickest of all the interviews, lasting no more than fifteen minutes. Similar questions as the last interview came up. In addition, I had to sell a product. I was offered the job on the spot. After accepting, I was told a little more about the store then lead out.

    All of the managers I interviewed with were very nice and seemed to have fun at work. I even chatted with employees each time I went, so I had an idea that this would be a good working environment.

    Interview Questions
    • Sell me your favorite book/Nook/membership. Sales pitches throw me off in general, as I haven't had to deal with them in a long time. Everything else they asked seemed pretty standard and relevant.   Answer Question
    Negotiation Details
    No negotiation. This is a minimum wage job, so I wasn't expecting more than that.
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  8.  

    Children's Lead Bookseller Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Spartanburg, SC
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Spartanburg, SC
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in September 2014.

    Interview Details

    I had 2 interviews and they said they liked me, but they had other candidates to interview and would get back to me the following week. When I didn't hear back I stopped in and asked if they had selected their candidate and they told me they still had more interviews and their computer systems were down. They told me that I would hear back Friday. I get an email Saturday night saying I didn't get the job. This whole experience has been a complete waste of time. They could have told me that day I came in or over the phone I didn't get the job and explain why. Email rejections to me are very vague and also inconsiderate. I will not be applying to anymore jobs with Barnes and Noble. They have officially lost my respect and they have lost me as a customer.

    Interview Questions
    • Why have you chosen now to apply for a job with us?   View Answer
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview
  9.  

    Part Time Book Seller Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Citrus Heights, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Citrus Heights, CA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 1+ week - interviewed at Barnes & Noble in September 2014.

    Interview Details

    I sent in an electronic application with my resume. I have no prior work experience, but some volunteer work. A week and a half later, I received a call from one of the managers who gave me a quick interview. He just asked if I was okay with minimum wage and 16-20 hours a week. We set up an interview in two days. I arrived and he was a bit late coming back from lunch, but was very apologetic about it. The interview was very short, and he said he would call about a second interview if he was interested. Four days later, he called and said a second interview wasn't necessary and that I was hired!

    Interview Questions
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview
  10.  

    Book Seller Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 1+ week - interviewed at Barnes & Noble.

    Interview Details

    I first applied online for the position of book seller and I was contacted by the manager for an over the phone interview a little less than a week later. We spoke for ten or fifteen minutes, with her asking questions like "what makes you a good fit?" and "why this company?" before she asked me to come into the store for an in-person interview. It was very informal and made me feel at ease, which I liked. The face to face interview was generally the same type of questions, but by a different person (another manager I believe). Unfortunately did not get the position, but the whole experience was not unpleasant.

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  11.  

    Bookseller Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 5 days - interviewed at Barnes & Noble.

    Interview Details

    This was your typical interview. I greatly appreciated having the interview in the Cafe, it provided an anxiety free setting for an interview. Most of the questions were based on my former employments. They wanted to know how you handled customers in specific situations, and how your past employment experiences would transfer to BN. They also asked me what I typically read, and what I was currently reading.

    Interview Questions
    • In your previous job, describe a situation where you had to deal with an angry customer.   Answer Question
    Accepted Offer
    Positive Experience
    Easy Interview

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