Sunday, June 03, 2012

On My Current Job

Yesterday during the last few hours at work, I felt burnt out already. I'm not a people person, you see, and working 6 days in a row meant I had to meet so many people (two or 3 hundred a day depending on how long the shift is, but normally not less than 100 people a day) and it was just getting too much. I could feel my energy seeping out already during the last few hours and I just wanted to get out of there. Boy oh boy...

I love having my me time and being alone and recharging after spending so much time with people, serving people. Sometimes at work I wonder about my role in life - whether I'm really doing something useful by working at the till. I mean, how much can you actually do for other people by working behind a till in a busy supermarket? However, thankfully whenever I doubt my role in life at work, there's always a customer who states that what I'm doing means something to him/her. :-D And through their eyes, I realize how important attitude is. And that the power of a sincere smile is really underrated. 

I've never really met tough/rude customers (luckily enough) and because most of the people here are older people (pensioners), so they've always been so relaxed and patient with me. :-D

One bad thing about working in a supermarket is that if a coworker suddenly gets sick, it's gonna be chaos all over because unlike other jobs where you can postpone doing things until the next day for example, in a supermarket you need someone else to tackle the job right away in most occasions. Otherwise all hell will break loose because things that need to be done that day must be done that day. And if the sick person is the one that's supposed to be at the till, then someone else MUST fill in the role so that the day's workload will go smoothly.

On the other hand, that "bad thing" is also good in a way that I don't bring home "homework". Of course there are things I need to check every now and then (like special offers so that when a customer asks if we have this and that, I'd know what to answer), but other than that, esp. because I'm the lowest in the career ladder (FYI I don't want to go up the ladder 'coz I know my limits and I'm not interested in going up the ladder anyway), I don't have to really think about anything much when I go back home from work. :-D Once a work shift is over, then that's that. :-D

When I first started working here, I didn't feel it was for me 'coz I'm not a people person and in the beginning language barrier was also an obstacle for me. I felt that I didn't fit in, but as time went by and the more customers validated my role at work, the more I realized that my initial thought was wrong. I don't know what will happen in the future, but for the time being I enjoy working at my current workplace and I like the fact that it's a part-time job 'coz I know my limits. I don't think I can serve the customers well if I work full-time because I did try adding more hours once and I ended up feeling burnt-out and it was getting hard for me to be the best that I can be behind the till. 

One other bad thing about working in a supermarket is being tempted to buy this and that and try this and that HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA...I have to really curb myself and think first before buying things that are sold on special offers hi hi...


  1. When I think of being a myyjä or working behind a till, it seems to me like a pretty difficult job. If you're a friendly, extroverted type, then I'm sure it's much easier, but the rush and the pressure to serve to the best of your ability just seems so daunting. Add to that a language barrier (I'm glad that's not a problem for you now!), and it's basically something I might have an anxiety dream about!

    Anyway, I think what you're doing is admirable. And it seems like your customers always appreciate you. I'm sure if you get way too burned out there will be other options for you, but I'm glad you seem to have some idea of the kind of difference you're making in the job you currently have. :)

  2. I can imagine that your job must be exhausting! When I was about 18 I spent some time working behind the till at McDonalds, and I remember being knackered after a day's work, even though I didn't have to speak any language except English to the customers! I'm a real extrovert, but even for me it was an effort to smile and interact with people for so many hours on end.

    Good on you for doing an essential job that many would try to avoid doing because of how tough it can be. As Elena said, customers must truly appreciate you - not just the job you do, but also your smiles and cheerful attitude. I'm sure there are many people who really look forward to seeing you and chatting with you when they come into the store.

  3. The power of the smile indeed! Amel, I'm sure you brighten so many people's days with your kind, sunny nature. Never underestimate that. Last night I showed lovely boyfriend your blog and boasted about your appreciation and kindness towards life.

  4. @Elena: I still have some language barrier left, but not as much as in the beginning 'coz I'm more familiar now with the product lines and work rhythm and special terms at work, but for certain things I still struggle - though I can "get by" by getting help from my coworkers. :-) That's one reason why I'm not interested in getting a promotion he he he...

    THANK YOU for your kind words, Elena! :-)))

    @Katriina: If it's only a few days a week, I can manage, but 6 days in a row is just too much, esp. during high season he he he...

    So you worked at McD once? Yeah, it takes an effort indeed to smile and interact with people for hours and hours, but many of my customers make it easier for me (esp. the older ones!). :-D

    THANK YOU for your kind words, too! :-)))

    @The World According to Me: AWWWWWWWWWW...that's SO nice of you to do that, Nikki! THANK YOU!!! I'm honored. :-)))

  5. I heard too working in supermarket is sometimes stress. Hubby ever work in Vomar Supermarket for few years. Take care...

  6. I remember working at a supermarket, & it wasn't fun. You found things to make you feel better, and that speaks well of you.
    The other thing that should console you also is there are so many people out there without jobs who love to be "in the mix" and be active in making a wage. You are very important in the fact that you work at a supermarket and people need food and need YOU to sell it to them !

  7. @Juliana: Ah, so he worked in a supermarket too, once. Good to know. :-D

    @Vince: THANK YOU for your kind words. You're right about people with no jobs. It's not easy for foreigners to get a job in this country.