Exciting news! So after endless months of job hunting, admittedly not religiously, but still after A LOT of job applications, I was recently finally rewarded with a part time job in retail! Understandably I was entirely ecstatic, extra excitement points due to the fact that it’s fashion involved and at a personal favourite store. Jewellery discounts. Check. Styling customers. Check. An attractive store, involving VM opportunities. Check. Sounds wonderful on paper, and don’t get me wrong it is thrilling and I am so fortunate to have this opportunity, however I admit that your first (real) job is not a glorious as you envision.
What I always was taught in High School business was the importance of induction and having just had mine, I can see why. Whilst certainly I gleamed an insight into this busy environment, I was left feeling very unsure, an uneasiness which seeped into my demeanour and ‘bubbly’ quality. Being ‘bubbly as a can of coke’ is key in the world of retail, and whilst as customers we have all scorned lacklustre staff, I could see how difficult it actually is to maintain this soft drink quality. After being reminded to be more ‘bubbly’ for the fourth time, I could feel my heart drop and the genuine smile I commenced with being replaced with more of a grimace than a smile. I felt insecure and this showed in my quiet and slightly mumbled words of greeting. The silence I was met with, as quite a few failed to hear me, was awkward and not very reassuring. No doubt as the days progress this easy light manner will become second nature, but to begin with its difficult struggling with the negative thoughts, that you are failing their expectations and your own.
To make matters worse I was expected to style customers without any advice or key product knowledge. Certainly I have a strong love of fashion and had done personal research into our products, but with jewellery, a product I have less experience with, I was left feeling confused and daunted. I have always been a hair piece-single necklace-earring kind of gal, so to be expected to style with no clues or tips a 5-way combo of headpiece, necklace, ring, wrist and ears, and then to encourage doubling of necklaces and tripling of bracelets was terrifying.
However my enthusiasm, though slightly battered, is not beat. I look upon this as, an experience and what it is, a first job. You have to work from the bottom to get to the top, and the fact that I now have a foot in the door is not an opportunity I am going to let slide. At the end of the day you may have to fake it. Fake ‘bubbliness.’ Fake confidence. As a customer I don’t enter a store thinking I am an expert. I am pleased to hear the staffs’ advice. If it’s bad? I am not going to verbally challenge their product styling, just put it down to bad taste. I mean, no one can get it perfect every time.
So I have my first job and I am excited, even if I did go home afterwards and cry. Who hasn’t? I am ready for this challenge and I will use it as the first step on the ladder of success, learn everything there is to learn and grasp every opportunity, no matter how small.