Job Promotions in the ski business

The ski store is usually the first point of contact that a potential skier has with the exiting and glamorous ski sport. Most of the skiers visit the retail outlet before they go up the mountain. The ski shop assistant must be able to provide information about weather and slope conditions, equipment required, best ski runs, and possible contests. Even though each ski resort also has its own outlet, you may find many of these retail outlets on the way to the ski resort.

The ski store also gets an income from summer sports such as mountain biking and hiking. The winter sport equipment and clothing is normally sold at lower prices during the summer. Many winter skiers take the opportunity to buy their ski gear during this period. The permanent ski shop assistant should also have an excellent knowledge of other sport equipment and clothing such as inline skate equipment, mountain climbing gear, and cycling.

Working as a ski shop assistant, has its benefits such getting in contact with people from all walks of life and gaining knowledge about the ski industry. There is a great demand for people with knowledge about snowboarding since it is still a relatively new sport. It is currently the most fashionable type of ski sport and if you have experience or are familiar with the sport, you are in demand.

One drawback of working as a ski shop assistant is that you have little time to enjoy outdoor life on the slopes. The average starting salary ranges from $5 to $7.5 an hour but can quickly go up to around $11 an hour.

The ski shop manager

The ski shop manager can expect a salary of $11-13$ an hour but has more responsibility that goes with it. In the words of Loraine Brooks that has run a ski retail outlet for the past few years:

'I am responsible for the day to day management of the business. I decide what purchases to make, control spending, set the budget, and make sure that the financial records are up to date. These records are audited by an external company once every three months. It is my responsibility to check that the cashier does the end-of-the-day counts and that the income and expenditure is balanced correctly.

Then there are customer complaints, technical problems with products, returns, late shipments of products, insurance issues, and employee issues to deal with on a daily basis. In my opinion as a ski shop manager, you need a good sense of humor, patience, organizational skills, advanced mathematical and accounting skills, excellent people and managing skills as well as marketing knowledge and an in-depth knowledge of the ski or sport industry.

The list of responsibilities is endless, from managing the back shop technical staff to handling bank statements and dealing with several sales representatives in one day. Computer literacy is a must as well as some management or ski industry experience. The hours are long and you work long after the ski shop is closed. The job of the ski shop manager is not all responsibility and no fun. I enjoy every moment of it. My job as may be hard at times, but never boring. The hardworking ski shop assistant can move up the ladder quickly and become a store supervisor or ski shop manager in around two to three year's time'