Job Blues

My boss imparted some scary knowledge on me yesterday. I recently started working for a toy store where I’m supposed to be peppy and chipper all the time. I’d only worked on the floor actually interacting with guest twice before working it a third time last night. At the end of the night I went and talked to my manager about receiving more hours since I’d only worked three times in three weeks.

She said, “Well, to be honest, today is the first day that we’ve seen the girl from the interview.”

I felt like someone had stabbed me in the chest. I said, “Maybe that’s because I’m getting more familiar with the store and answering costumer’s questions.” Which is true, the more familiar and comfortable I am with a job, the better job I do.

I’m going to tell you a secret. I’m really awkward. The store I work at is all about costumer interaction, which really sucks for an awkward turtle like me. Finding the perfect place to say “Hi! How’s everyone doing?” or “Finding everything you need?” or “We’re having a half-off sale today” is hard enough, but it doesn’t stop there for this store. It’s also “Oh! Are you a princess? Are you going to a royal ball to meet your prince?” or “Cool! You’re a superhero? Can you fly?” All that stuff is hard for me when the parents are right there staring at me lol.

I was never good at being corny on purpose. I’m a very laid back person and I prefer interacting with costumers as I see opportunities to, so as not to crowd them.

But this isn’t what scared me. What scares me is that because of this, my boss wasn’t giving me any hours. She was probably hoping I’d quit. She was withholding hours (and therefore money) from me because I was being myself. And she said that yesterday was the first day she’d seen me chipper, which I didn’t get because I was acting the same to me. Which is what bothers me. I’m naturally laid back but also goofy and quirky, which is what got me the job in the first place. Could I have let my insecurity of not knowing the store well show? Or had I looked a little bitter that my boss was being short with me for not knowing how to operate the cash register efficiently my first day? I’d thought it a coincidence that she had me working the back of the store, never at the register, and only once a week. But no, it was deliberate. And I was promised a full time position after the holiday season initially. That’ll probably be a flop too.

That scares me.

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