Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Office Space

I have had just around 15 different jobs since I was 16 years old. That's roughly two jobs a year. From Baskin Robbins and pizza restaurants, to skate shops and ski stores, home decor and luxury watch stores, preschools and nanny jobs and of course the personal assistant gig. There was also that one day I spent "manning the grill" for a company that required that I wear a pair of green shorts, a yellow shirt and a gray hat with, GET THIS, a SUN holding a hot dog in one hand and a soda in the other.
(I can't believe I ever even put that on, let alone made it to the catering gig in the first place. The manager put me behind the grill with a "Sorry Sweets" kind of sarcasm and by the third hour of smoke wafting into my eyeballs and the ever demanding patrons I took my "break". Never to return.)

I digress.

So anyways. Of all of the jobs that I've had, the one that I have now has been the closest study of Business in America yet. My co-workers would laugh at that statement, but it's true. I'm not claiming we have the perfect structure for everything, but I've certainly experienced a lot of things that I didn't even consider in other jobs.

For example: When I worked at Forever 21, I never thought about the decreased sales of turtle necks in relation to the economy. When I was slanging donuts in a new shop in Chico, I didn't concern myself with "HR". Likewise when I worked at Paradise Point Resort in San Diego, I really didn't think of a guest's stay in terms of a Return on their Investment (ROI, duh). I also didn't think about potential lay-offs while I was a nanny to those two overly energetic and strong children (who used to punch me randomly). One more for you: When I worked at the skate shop and the register got confusing, there was no IT guy to refer to.

I started at my current job counting envelopes. Oh my God isn't it GLAMOROUS?? Counting envelopes, yes. (okay so it was just supposed to get me by until I found a real job). And I'll tell you right now I did a damn good job. Because then I was promoted to Customer Service (see, do you see how ALREADY it is all very American? Climbing up the ladder and whatnot?)From there I was lucky enough to be around when someone quit and I was offered her position and the one thing I have so longed for: My very own cubicle.

Since working there in this position I've had to deliver ideas to clients that still strike me as TOTALLY intimidating, we have had busy periods, slow periods, major system issues, alleged 'slide shows', lay-offs, debt problems, people resigning and as of this last Friday: mergers and acquisitions. Our company was recently acquired by another one and we now have a new name, will probably get a new office and will most certainly all have to stop taking long lunches. And a certain someone is going to have to stop stealing office supplies...