Good news! I am finally out of the retail game!! My dream of not working retail came true this past April. This is that story.
So around the beginning of the year, I started having problems with some of my co-workers at Lowe’s. There was some unnecessary drama that occurred when it was announced that a new scheduling system was going to be put into place. Part of that new system was each full-time employee was going to have a specific shift they worked: opening, mid, or closing. I was excited to have one firm shift that I worked. However, I then learned that we got to pick which shift we worked, kind of. We all told our store manager which shift we’d prefer, and if no one else requested that shift, then you got it. But if two or more people requested that shift, then who got “there way” was decided based on a tier merit system. Turns out one of the first-tier merits was something that included me, so I had first pick of what shift I wanted. Me and the other two people at the customer service desk had picked the same shifts, so, of course, unnecessary drama started to brew. People were mad at me because I got to have my pick, and my pick was what other people wanted too. I started feeling really guilty, and I felt people were trying to make me feel badly. I talked to a couple supervisors and managers, and one of them in particular put it into perspective for me. He told me I should not feel guilty at all because I worked hard to earn my place, and to have the privilege to pick my shift. Other people, who had worked there longer and had more opportunities to do better, did not take advantage of that, and that’s their fault. He was totally right. I felt better that my managers had my back, but the whole atmosphere of the place had just turned into a negative space for me, enough that it was affecting my mental illness, and that I started calling in fairly often. I decided it was time to do whatever it takes to get out of retail.
I quickly found and accepted a position as a leasing consultant for an apartment management company. It is also the company that my dad and cousin have both worked for for over 25 years. I had a few connections through them, and happily accepted a leasing consultant position at one of the nearby properties.
I took this position for several reasons. One, I was sick of retail. I had been working retail since March of 2016. I do not have the patience that comes with working retail full-time. Second, I told myself that if I did stay at Lowe’s, it was for the people I worked with. I realized people are temporary, retail life wasn’t, and I hated retail life. Third, with the new scheduling system they were introducing, they were also going to get rid of the “scheduled days off.” I would not have regular days off, and I would only have one weekend every eight weeks off. If you’ve ever worked retail, you know weekends are the worst. There was also no guaranteed two-days-off-in-a-row. The days off thing is what really pushed me over the edge.
It’s been roughly 100 days since I’ve started working at my new job, and I can say with 100% confidence that it is SO much better than retail. There are still some customer-service aspects that come with leasing, but I’m hoping to move up the food chain within a year of being there. There will still be customer service aspects, but it will be more cut-and-dry facts due to the legal document of the lease than trying to sell something. Fingers crossed and lots of prayers are needed for me!
How do you feel about retail? Do you love it? Hate it? How did you make the leap from retail to, well, non-retail? Let me know in the comments!