I have an irrational (or maybe not-so-irrational fear?) of something going terribly wrong and me becoming unemployed and forced to look for entry level positions. Maybe I will soon be a barista, or an Avon lady, who knows what kind of doom and gloom the future holds? I don’t consider myself above miserable work because:
bills make me humble and I will do what is necessary to pay them.
the only thing that scares me more than a bad job is no job at all.
I narrowed my list down to three, but I think I could get 10 if I thought you wanted to listen to a 2,000-word rant about my teenage and early-twenty-something employment history. Here is what I did before I came to do what I do now:
Sales associate at Kohl’s. This job wasn’t actually that bad, but I’m listing it because my pay was so low. I was working in Utah and the minimum wage was much less than it had been in Canada. I was 16 and making $6 or $7 an hour. The problem was first, that the job was mind-numbingly boring and second, I was around clothes and purses all day so I usually spent my entire paycheque as soon as I got it.
Server at a 24 hour diner (yep, I worked the night shift 10pm – 6am). The worst part of this job was obviously the schedule. The rest of it wasn’t so bad: restaurants really aren’t that busy at 2am! I spent a lot of time watching TV or playing cards with the other staff. On the upside, the money was great. In addition to being paid more per hour because it was the night shift (I think I got $11 or $12/hr), tips were generous — and why not? I was a young college student working through the wee hours of the morning to pay my tuition. It wasn’t unusual for me to go home with $200-300 in cash from tips at the end of the night. I alternate between being terribly ashamed that I worked here to not giving a damn because I was making ~$1,000 per week. In any case, the stint was short lived and many less lucrative serving appointments followed.
The Apple Genius Bar. I worked here part-time for a year while in graduate school. In addition to basically every customer lying about how they broke their electronics (Oh, you don’t know why all the liquid sensors have been triggered? So weird! Yes, I’m sure the screen spontaneously shattered in your pocket also! Right, it dropped 6 inches onto plush carpet and just bent in half! Crazy!), Apple was continuously revamping our schedules and appointments to make us “more efficient”. 15 minute appointments got slashed to 10 minutes, and we were expected to do more than was really possible in the time span we were provided. To add insult to injury, when I was promoted to another position, I didn’t receive a much-deserved raise. I complained about it for 2 months… while aggressively pursuing a job elsewhere. When I told them I was leaving, they offered a five-figure boost to my pay — which INFURIATED me instead of made me want to stay. If you could afford to pay me so much more this whole time, why did you wait until I was halfway out the door? I sold my Apple stock a few months after I left the company with a bitter taste in my mouth (though I won’t be giving up my iPhone any time soon).
What was your worst job(s) so far?