Retail and wholesale trade managers (NOC 0621)

High opportunity occupation

About this job

Retail and wholesale trade managers plan, organize, direct, control and evaluate the operations of establishments that sell merchandise or services on a retail or wholesale basis.

Want to learn more? Watch this WorkBC Career Trek video and see what it’s like to work in this type of career.

Retail and wholesale trade managers work for retail and wholesale sales businesses or they may own and operate their own store.

Common job titles
  • bird seller
  • dealer, cattle / livestock
  • dealer, computer products
  • dealer, metal / salvage / scrap metal
  • dealer, pleasure boat
  • dealer, tire


Retail and wholesale trade managers perform some or all of the following duties:

  • plan, direct and evaluate the operations of establishments engaged in wholesale and retail sales or of departments in such establishments
  • manage staff and assign duties
  • study market research and trends to find out about consumer demand, potential sales volumes and the competition
  • study their clientele in order to understand what merchandise would sell best
  • buy merchandise to sell
  • set price and credit policies
  • develop and undertake marketing strategies
  • plan budgets and approve expenditures
  • settle customer complaints
  • decide staffing requirements and hire staff

Work environment

Retail trade managers must enjoy working with the public because a large part of their job involves interacting with customers, answering questions and dealing with complaints.

Most managers work a minimum of 40 hours a week, but work schedules vary considerably. Independent owners of retail establishments have more control over their schedules, although hours of operation must be convenient for customers. Owners also tend to put in more hours before their establishment opens and after it closes.

Insights from industry

To compete with large chains and online sales, small companies need to develop specialties to keep customers coming to them for their know-how. Small companies should also work to develop creative promotions to attract and retain customers.

Career paths and resources

Career paths

There is some mobility between managers in this group, depending on the product or service. In larger companies, retail trade managers may have the opportunity to move into upper management positions. These could include regional and provincial management positions.

Additional resources