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New Job Disappointments

 
 
fishin
 
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 03:57 pm
Sooo... I had started my own business a while back but there is an ebb/flow that goes with it. Business tends to die off right after Christmas and pick up again around April or May. In order to make sure I can pay my bills I took on a 2nd job.

The new job is a big-box retail store and it pays crap but it's (barely) enough to live on during the slack times. My schedule allows me to continue with my own business during the other months and it's a small supplemental income.

Thusfar it's a huge disappointment. I applied for the job and was interviewed by 3 people. All of them spoke of the "close teamwork" of the department I'd be working in. I got hired and spent the 1st 3 days working only with the HR trolls going through a bunch of orientation stuff (benefits, OSHA certifications, etc...).I also got all the usual BS about the corporate organization and whatnot. Sounded good. Everybody's hapy! Wheeee!

I take Saturday off and show up at my new department on Sunday (I'm scheduled to work Sunday through Thursday). The department manager is on vacation and the "2nd" is running the show. 5 minutes into the shift and the acting manager tells me that the actual Dept. Manager will be back in 2 days and that he (the #2 guy) is leaving for another location. OK, fair enough.

I look around. There are supposed to be 12 people in the department. 5 showed up for work. I find out fairly quickly that there are only 7 (including myself) to begin with. During the shift one of the other guys tells me that 2 guys quit the prior week and two others were fired because they had a fist fight in the middle of the store floor. Yoikes! I finish my shift and go home.

Monday I show up and we have all 6 of the 7 there (Dept manager still on vacation). I find out that the 2 that were missing the previous night are actually seasonal temps. They're both college students and Thursday will be their last night. I also find out that 6 people from other departments in the store quit the previous yesterday and that one of the dept managers from another department killed himself 2 weeks ago - an hour after attending a company party. Went into the bathroom at home, stuck a gun in a his mouth and pulled the trigger while his wife was sleeping in the next room. Nice! I finish my shift and go home.

I show up Wednesday. The 2 college kids didn't show up again. The 2nd in charge is gone - transferred to another store. The Dept. Manager is back and I finally meet him. An hour later he suggests that he should train me to take over his job... Shocked Then the "senior" co-worker tells me he's had enough and he's transferring to another store. Late in the shift I'm told by the dept. manager that 3 new guys will be starting the following Sunday. That takes care of replacements for the 2 college kids and the senior co-worker that are leaving. We're still at 6 people total - half of what should be there. The manager wants me to train the new guys. I've been there 3 days and suddenly I'm qualified to train new people? Shocked

I finished my shift, came home and started looking for another job. This is the first time I've ever worked in a retail evnironment. They can't all be this bad, can they?
 
sozobe
 
  2  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:01 pm
@fishin,
Wow.

That's bad alright.

I haven't worked in a retail environment that often but whenever I did I hated it.

Hope a) you find a better job and b) your own business picks up.
fishin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:05 pm
@sozobe,
*nods* I'm trying to decide if the HR folks and store manager are completely clueless or if they are just really good liars - or both.
0 Replies
 
Cycloptichorn
 
  2  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:06 pm
Yeah, they're not all that bad. If you are lucky, you can find one which is merely boring.

Cycloptichorn
fishin
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:10 pm
@Cycloptichorn,
Ha! I guess I'm lucky then. This one is bad AND boring! Razz
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  2  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:11 pm
The retail business is the pits; long hours and very little rewards. I was lucky, because I started out as an auditor, and was promoted to audit manager withing 3.5 years after I got hired. I worked hard, long, hours, but was rewarded. Working hard on the floor doesn't provide much opportunity - except long hours.
caribou
 
  2  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:16 pm
Hey, can we play "Which big box retail store?"

May you find something less heinous.
JPB
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:18 pm
@fishin,
Yikes! Sounds brutal.

I don't know about all retail but a small hardware store franchise may be a better fit than a big box building center.

g'luck!
0 Replies
 
fishin
 
  2  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:32 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Heh, at the rate things are going I'm expecting to be promoted to dept. manager by the beginning of next week. Very Happy

(BTW, the store has 1 general manager, 3 assistant managers and 24 dept managers. I just got a phone call that 2 of the 3 assistant managers quit this morning. Holy crap! If this keeps up I could be an assistant manager by the end of next month! lol )
fishin
 
  2  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:33 pm
@caribou,
Quote:
Hey, can we play "Which big box retail store?"


No! Very Happy
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:36 pm
@fishin,
Damn! I predict you'll be store manager by next week, area manager by next month and CEO come the new year.

That's crazy stuff.

I don't think all retail is that bad. I've known people who have worked in it for years and years and are happy with their jobs. Finding a gig that will work with your other schedule is going to be the tough part.
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  2  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:47 pm
@fishin,
You gotta worry about getting your paycheck....
Green Witch
 
  2  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:48 pm
I worked in a department store when I was very young. I walked to work and I would envy bag ladies sitting on park benches talking to pigeons. I would think "at least they don't have to go to this stinkin' job". I felt like a cyborg who was targeted to be killed with boredom. I can't tell you how many hundreds and hundreds of men's dress shirts I folded and pinned, only to have some over made-up socialite undo them and hold them up to see if her chubby sugar daddy might fit into it. To this day I refuse to fold shirts and I just kind of roll them up on the closet shelves.

Most large retail operations are like big disfunctional families that try and convince you that all is well, you will be cared for and you should be grateful for being taken in under their roof. At least when I was there they didn't try to force the team spirit thing down my throat like they do today. I cringe when I'm in a big box and I hear some corporate cheer being spelled out by a bunch of people wearing company vests.

You might enjoy reading "Nickle and Dimed" by Barbara Barbara Ehrenreich to compare your experience with hers in the world of low entry jobs. Wishing you better luck next time...

PS I recently learned the most common job in the USA is cashier.
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 04:51 pm
@cicerone imposter,
Hey cicerone, would you please send me an email so I can send you some info? I looked for an email address in your profile but couldn't find one so if you would, just send me an email at your convenience please. You'll find my email address in my profile. Thanks!
0 Replies
 
cicerone imposter
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 05:18 pm
@Green Witch,
Green Witch, I read that book, "Nickle and Dimed." It was a sobering story about working for minimum pay and being treated like shite with no benefits. The "team spirit" at these big box stores are just one step above "slavery."
0 Replies
 
caribou
 
  2  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 05:32 pm
@fishin,
Can we at least guess the weight of your dog?
fishin
 
  2  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 05:37 pm
@caribou,
lol Sure! Feel free. Razz
caribou
 
  1  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 06:02 pm
@fishin,
well, I don't think I've ever seen your dog.....

But I'll guess 63 pounds
0 Replies
 
OCCOM BILL
 
  2  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 09:14 pm
@fishin,
Shocked Damn! What'd ya do when you got home? Drunk
Chumly
 
  3  
Reply Thu 21 Aug, 2008 09:54 pm
@fishin,
I understand that entry level sales jobs are not going to be the that great.....but I should ask.......did you expect more and if so would that be a reasonable expectation?

FWIW, Costco (at least here in Western Canada) is far better than the other big box stores as per pay and benefits etc, at least that's what I'm told. I have no first hand experience in retail however.

The store you are working in sounds right bizarre!
 

 
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