Before Your First Full-Time Job, Everyone Should Work In Customer Service

Before Your First Full-Time Job, Everyone Should Work In Customer Service

Everyone knows what it's like to buy something. But what does it look like on the other side?

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Even before they go to college, many people experience what it's like to have a part-time job. Some of our first experiences making money are working putting clothes back on a shelf or trying to fit various foods in a bag, making it through the week until payday hits and the whole process starts over. When you get back home, there are always stories to tell. Some are about the nice customers who joke with you or ask about your day. But the hardest ones to tell, let alone experience first-hand, are the angry customers.

Anyone who's ever worked in customer service has had a story about an irritated shopper. Usually, it's someone having a bad day already, and then something doesn't work out. It could be an old coupon or a deal that didn't come up, but all the sudden what starts as a small issue becomes something much bigger. All the sudden, there are raised voices, accusations, and even threats.

On the customer's end, everything ends up working out. If they create enough of a problem, many managers will give customers the savings they were hoping for. Worst comes to worst, the customer doesn't get the deal, but can leave the store and (hopefully) improve their mood. The same doesn't go for the employee. Employees have to try to work with a customer who is angry and de-escalate them.

They walk a fine line between an aggressive customer and a frustrated boss. While trying to appease the customer, you have to follow the rules. Some customers will get even madder, claiming you don't know how to do your job or scaring you by saying they will find your manager and try to get you fired. Best case scenario is when your manager comes out and takes care of the customer for you. But even then, negativity continues. You can't leave until the end of your shift. You feel incompetent and upset, and unrightfully so, but the only thing you can do is continue working.

Not all customers are like this. And yes, sometimes coupons and discounts don't work when they should, and when that happens you should speak up. But it's never a solution to yell at the employees working there. If everyone went through the experience of working a job in customer service and went through these dilemmas on the other end, everyone would treat employees with more kindness. Most importantly, remember to treat everyone with respect, whether you're a customer or employee.

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To The Boss Who Became My Role Model

Thank you for being the person who helped change my life for the better.
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When people talk about their boss it is usually negative, but not in all cases. Luckily I am one of the few who have an amazing boss. This is an open letter to the boss who has impacted my life in several ways.

Dear person who shall remain anonymous,

There are no words that can describe how grateful I am that God has brought you into my life. I can’t thank you enough for the strength you gave me when I felt weak. Thank you for never giving up on me and helping me find the person I am meant to be.

You have encouraged me not only at work but in school as well as my personal life. Not only are you my boss but you are my role model and one of my biggest supporters. I always know when I need something no matter how big or small you are there for me.

When I first started working here I was full of many anxieties and I am still overcoming them but with your endless support, I have faith that I will be able to overcome anything. I did not think that this job would have led me to find the person I aspire to be the most. To have someone that cares so deeply about my well-being is a precious gift that I will forever cherish. It is a great feeling to know I have you, someone whose advice and words of wisdom come from deep down in your heart and nothing less.

When something was bothering me and I would keep to myself, you always knew that something was wrong. You continue to be by my side throughout this crazy journey I am on so thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Thank you for every talk, every random hug when you knew that I really needed it, every text to see how I was doing, and every encouraging word you have given me. You are such an amazing individual who inspires many. The world needs more people like you in it who continue to make it a better place each and every day.

Much Love,

Sharyn

Cover Image Credit: Planet MineCraft

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I Chose Babysitting Over Retail And Will Never Regret Taking Care Of 'My Kids'

Children have taught me so much about myself.

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Babysitting just sounds like a high school thing. Like something you do a few days after school or on occasional weekends when your parents are pressing you to get a job but nowhere seems to be hiring. So why not watch some kids for a few hours a week? It pays well (usually) and it's easy (sometimes).

Maybe not right now, but a lot of us will want a family of our own one day.

Did you ever think about what you are going to do when a baby is placed in your lap and you suddenly become permanently responsible for someone other than yourself? First-time parents are learning every day. It's like switching your major from journalism to biomedical science. Those who've experienced children through babysitting will always have the upper hand, a little bit of background skill.

What I've learned from babysitting is that no child is the same. Each child I've babysat comes from a different family with a different dynamic and a different set of rules. Therefore, how could every child act the same?

It's easy to get mad when they're stubborn or don't listen. But how can you blame them? You have no idea what happens in their home when you leave to make it to that party you thought you were going to miss.

The children I've babysat have taught me just as much, if not more than I feel I've taught them in the short time I've had them. Kids are kids, every age group is a different version of annoying, I know, I get it. But every now and then, if you just stop and listen to what they have to say, they will surprise you every time.

Not only are kids funny, but they've had me on the ground laughing out loud, thinking, "How did that sentence just come out of a three-year-old's mouth?" The pure mispronouncing of words and insertion of quotes they must've heard on television — it's all an expression of how their brains are understanding the world and it's really quite amazing.

But every once in a while, that three-year-old will tell you something that completely baffles you.

Something about life or about the world that makes so much sense and is explained so simply, it makes us adults look stupid. That is why I love kids. They have this unique ability to teach us a thing or two about how we should be acting and how we should be treating one another.

Over the past six years, I've been peed on, fallen asleep on and creamsicle dripped on. I've had shoes thrown at me while I'm driving, I've dealt with a little boy's bloody fist after it punched a hole through a glass window.

Temper tantrums and breakdowns aside, the hardest part about babysitting is leaving.

When the end of the summer rolls around and it's time to move back into your college apartment, the hardest thing you will do is say goodbye to those kids that called you "Miss Renee" 45 hours a week, for three months. Those kids looked up to you as a role model. They didn't see you as the broke college student who needed a way to fund her senior year and pay off her credit card debt. By the end of the summer, they become so much more than that.

Those were "you're kids" no matter how many times you had to explain yourself to the moms on the playground when they told you your kids were adorable.

You'll never be able to get them out of your head, their little voices singing along to the "Lion King" soundtrack in the backseat on the way home from the pool. All the times they made you laugh, in ways your friends could never replicate. Babysitting is so important. It teaches you about yourself in ways you'll only understand when it's over. It gives you a glimpse into the future but also a look into the past — your past.

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