Cracker Barrel's country charm is well-known and beloved across the United States. You'll find oversized rocking chairs out front, and inside you can enjoy comfort food at a table lit by a lantern, and great service with a friendly smile. If you are interested in providing great service and friendly smiles at Cracker Barrel, then this article is for you. In this article, we will discuss questions you may encounter at your Cracker Barrel interview, and tips for success.

About Cracker Barrel


The first Cracker Barrel was opened along a new freeway in Lebanon, Tennessee in 1969. The man who created the restaurant, Dan Evins, worked for Shell Oil. The first eatery had a gas station attached to it and was designed to increased gasoline sales. Over time, they phased out the attached gas stations and the rest, as they say, is history.

Cracker Barrel prides itself on simple, delicious food at fair prices with friendly service. They haven’t strayed far from their southern roots, serving grits, chicken fried steak, and their world-famous biscuits. They are also a country store specializing in farmhouse gifts and branded merchandise. You can pick up these kinds of gifts:

  • Rocking chairs
  • Quilts
  • Yankee Candle merchandise
  • Cast iron Lodge cookware
  • Nostalgic electronics
  • Cracker Barrel foods and food bundles
  • Toys and games
  • Branded and non-branded knick-knacks

Now with over 600 stores across the country, Cracker Barrel works hard to fulfill its brand promise of providing a friendly “home away from home” environment. They aim to treat customers like family, so people can relax and enjoy real home-style food and shopping in their unique and fun stores—all at a fair price.

Cracker Barrel Interview Questions

Once you’ve scored an interview, it’s important to prepare yourself. One of the best ways to get prepped is to anticipate the questions that may be asked. Some questions may be specific to Cracker Barrel, so it’s important to research the company. Make sure you have eaten in the restaurant before your interview at least once so you can speak to their menu, service environment and country store atmosphere.

They may ask you restaurant specific questions like:

  • What do you like most about Cracker Barrel?
  • What is your favorite thing about visiting our restaurant and store?
  • Do you have a favorite menu item?
  • What do you notice about the service inside our restaurants?

Take notes when you’re inside the restaurant and store so you can speak personally to questions the interviewer may have about your personal experience with Cracker Barrel. Keep your answers positive. If you don’t like fattening food, concentrate on the fact you love the lighter options provided on their menus. Never say you don’t like something—focus on the things you like.


You’ll be asked standard service industry questions so they can gauge your ability to work with the public, on a team, and in a fast-paced environment. These questions will provide you with a great opportunity to showcase your skills, accomplishments, and experience. Your answers will be what sets you apart from the competition. No matter what position you’re interviewing for, it’s good to look these over and plan your honest responses.

woman in teal t-shirt sitting beside woman in suit jacket

image source: Unsplash

Why Do You Think You’re a Good Fit?

What Kind of Work Environment Do You Prefer?

How Would You Handle an Upset Customer?

What Does It Mean to Be a Team Player?

What Is Your Greatest Strength?

What Is Your Greatest Weakness?

What Questions Do You Have?

Interview Tips

Interviews can be anxiety-inducing, but there are things you can do to relieve stress and give yourself the biggest chance of acing the big day.


Be Early

Get there at least 15 minutes early. This will allow you to settle down before your appointment time. Take deep breaths while you’re waiting. Also, be sure to be nice and friendly to everyone who greets you. You never know, someone may ask them their impression of you.


Being early also shows your ability to be punctual, which is critical for a busy place like Cracker Barrel. Leave your phone in the car so you're not tempted to look at it as you wait. You want to take in your surroundings—not Facebook. If you bring it in, silence it and leave it alone.


Smile

Seriously, this is big. Smile and give a firm handshake. Watch your nervous ticks like bouncing legs, tapping pens or wringing of the hands. If you find you’re getting nervous or tongue-tied, just take a deep breath, smile, then start again. The person interviewing you knows it’s a nerve-wracking experience, and they will appreciate your ability to take a breath.


Dress

man wearing watch with black suit

Image source: Unsplash

Dress professionally. You don’t need a power suit, but you need to present well.  Anything you would wear to a club belongs nowhere near an interview room. Remember, Cracker Barrel presents as a country and family-focused restaurant, so keep your clothing conservative. Never wear jeans, short skirts, clothes with stains or holes, or sky-high heels.


Keep your clothes comfortable so you can focus on the interview. Anything ill-fitting will distract you and distract the interviewer. You don’t want to tug or scratch at any piece of clothing.


What to Bring

Always bring a couple of extra copies of your resume and any letters of reference you have. It’s a good idea to bring a notebook and pen in case there’s information you want to capture, like the interviewer’s email address.


The next day, use that email address to express your gratitude to the hiring manager for taking the time to meet with you. You want to stay on their mind, and one follow-up email is a perfect way to do that.

Conclusion


Cracker Barrel can be a great place to work and will give you a ton of work experience in both the restaurant and retail worlds. Nailing the interview will get you in the door, your work ethic and ability to learn and adapt will keep you there and moving up the ranks—there is no shortage of opportunities at Cracker Barrel!

Featured Image: Image via Flickr