Today I really noticed something about working retail. There’s a big difference in attitudes at the two places I’ve worked.
I went through a honeymoon period with Hob-Lob, which really only lasted a day. I came home and bawled for a couple of hours afraid I would be fired because I forgot to put the stamp on the back of the checks. I wasn’t fired, and was mostly a cashier for slightly over a year. I was thankful I quit after that year because I was so freaking drained. For Hob-Lob it was mostly: do your shit, help the customers, get paid, go home. There was no encouragement of getting the employees to talk to each other, spend time with and get to know each other whether in or outside of work. Didn’t really tell you if you were doing a good job or not. The only time I was ever told I was doing a good job was when I quit and asked, because we never had reviews. “I would have told you otherwise if you weren’t doing a good job.” Wow, thanks.
This next part is going to sound like basically an advertisement for my current employers: “Circle-dot.” “You should work here blah blah blah” There are things I don’t like so don’t go thinking it’s all sunshine working for them for me.
I’m not in the honeymoon period with “Circle-dot” anymore, I think Black Friday will take anyone out of any zen they have. Talk about a crazy day anywhere. It’s a little different for me not being cashier all the time (as little as I can honestly) and mostly stocking product. But even cashiering is less stressful. Having a machine that’s actually a part of the 21st century, instead of having to type in each price, makes an amazing difference. Someone who does returns all day so you just process purchases, and pays attention to how many people are in line takes the stress down another notch.
“Circle-dot” actually cares about its employees, to an extent. More so than Hob-Lob anyway. During the holidays they fed us, during our meetings they’d have a game to play, contests, and volunteer work. The people seem much more at ease most of the time, and are far more friendly and helpful. They actually encourage more than just getting to know your fellow workers; they encourage you to take care of yourself. Financially, emotionally, physically, everything. New years resolution for this year at work, they created a kind of “Biggest Loser.” Made sure to get everyone to realize they’d need to sleep before opening at midnight on Black Friday (Sleep schedule, LOL). You joke while working. Your bosses are actually approachable and will laugh along with you. Granted there is a distinct lack of music through the store, other than back in Electronics, but that’s tolerable.Even the customers are far more tolerable.
Oh! And you actually get your 15 minute breaks! If you tried to take a 15, or at least if I had tried, at Hob-Lob I would have gotten yelled at. Only on Black Friday did you get the 15 minutes. It makes days go faster and you get far more work done.
I don’t know if I’ll stay there and make it a career as I think retail is just going zap all my life out of me, and I’d actually like to have time to visit family during the holidays. For now though, “Circle-dot” is where I’m remaining.