Living a Retail Life...one 10 Hour Day at a Time
The heart of the Ozarks! Springfield, Missouri.
“Thoughts lead on to purposes; purposes go forth in action; actions form habits; habits decide character; and character fixes our destiny.”
“Teamwork is the ability to work together toward a common vision. The ability to direct individual accomplishment toward organisational objectives. It is the fuel that allows common people to attain uncommon results.”
Its the beginning of November and everyone knows what that means…If you haven’t stepped into your local Starbucks and heard some Christmas music and had your delicious peppermint mocha you might not know that the day after Halloween is the first day of Christmas in the land of Retail.
This has not always been a joyous time for me. It used to be a rather stressful time…you see I suffer from a what is known as Attention Deficit Disorder. Yes…like many 8 year olds I also have ADD. Note I do not have ADHD. I just have issues focusing my attention and it gets worse the more there is to focus on. So the busier it is around holiday season the more things there are going on around me the harder time I have filtering through it all. I tend to get over stimulated by it all. This over stimulations usually came of looking rather unprofessional.
It took several sit downs with my previous boss, Paul, for me to come terms with the fact that I had a problem. I have always known I had issues with focus but I didn’t really realize how poorly it came off during high traffic times of the day. So last holiday season I made a serious effort to change this. I did everything I could into focusing all of that nervous energy I normally receive when there is too much going on around me. I took all of that energy and turned it into a great big ball of holiday spirit. Everything from skipping around the store to singing along with the Christmas music we were forced to listen to for two months. I remained aware of my inability to properly multi-customers so I would help them one at a time, always remaining calm and cheerful.
The next thing I knew it was January and I had survived it. I came out the other end a better person with my on strength and resolve.
Definately. I mean I have always been a hard worker. They always say some people make amazing assistant managers but can’t make the transition to manager. Some people just are work horses but aren’t good at handling people. It is a difficult transition to make. I have always been so used to doing everything myself and now I have to delegate tasks to my team. I also use management catchphrases like “team” instead of “employees” ;)
I don’t know what it is about being in management that makes you have to be so self-reflexive all the time. You constantly having to evaluate your performance and explain “why”. I have never been the self-evaluative type. (she says noting the irony of typing this in her self-reflexive blog)…Yet on a weekly basis I am having to force myself out of that barrier and find reasons for the things that happen around me. When I get emails asking me, “Wow! What happened to your music sales this week?!” I feel like I have to go back over every transaction for the week and solve some kind of mystery; when in all reality I could just as easily have responded “Nothing good came out this week.” It might be true but is just sounds like I am making a justification for poor performance. I have always had the frame of mind that no matter what I say it will sound like an excuse…so I choose not to say anything at all and just take the blame/credit however it stands.
I think it has something to do with being a rather mischievous child. I was used to hearing from my parents “I don’t want to hear your excuses” – even if I was actually telling them the truth. I have formed this idea in my mind that no matter what I say it will sound like I am being defensive. So I just don’t say anything about my performance…let it speak for itself, so to speak. Which in itself sounds like I am making an excuse for why I don’t want to do evaluations…I guess just have to learn how be better at assessing myself…or something.
I know in the long run this is something that I will get better at. Like a muscle I haven’t really used often enough. The longer I am a manager, the more I will be able to flex my self-reflexive muscles. I just am frustrated that I can’t do enough right now…
Almost four years ago I graduated with a degree in Theatre Education. You would think I knew exactly what I wanted to do with my life. Well, you would be wrong. At some point during my last semester of college I came to the conclusion that I had no intention of really becoming an Educator. At this point I was working at the airport and trying to make enough money to pay all of my bills. Well…I just happen to have this really nice boyfriend who just happened to have a great boss, who happened to be hiring. (I know it was a strange series of coincidences)
I think you can see where this story is going…
I went from being a worthless lounge about…who didn’t have a job for the majority of college…to being someone who worked in retail. Don’t get me wrong, I had never thought of myself as the “retail type”…whatever that is. I just happened to find the right job, with the right people, at the right time.
Now it is three years later and I am managing my own store and I think I really value being one of those people who sells things. I am glad I chose not to be a teacher…because I am pretty sure I would have royally screwed up some children. I would much rather spend my time selling people video games and comic books, because I can see the value in it. I see worth in giving people what they want…it is a noble cause.
So basically…this is it…this is My Retail Life.
um…Ireland I guess.