December 17, 2013 - JustASlaveUntilTheMusicPays
Today Was The Last Straw…
So, I’ve only been working at Target for about… 5 and a half weeks (seems like one week of actual work, so I think that’s probably closer to the days I’ve actually worked–as opposed to calendar days. Maybe 1.5-2 weeks, not really sure. But I digress…).
Hired as Hardlines. On day 1, I bounced from Cashier (for 1 hour), to Hardlines (maybe 90 minutes), to Electronics (10 minutes), and back to Hardlines (the remainder of my 8 hour shift). After that, I think on day 2 or 3, after spending all my time in Electronics, I was told I was *officially* Electronics. Which made me happy–it’s a cozy 5-10% of the store, the other TMs there are really great to work with and so nice, Electronics is where all the big-ticket items are for the holidays, so I figure I’m kinda fuckin’ important (and apparently they really need the help–I wanna say there’s like 3 or 4 other new hires in Electronics), I’m always told how knowledgeable I am with electronics (although as most of us “youngins” know, to the “old farts”, “knowledgeable” means being able to turn on the “movie disc box”), and I do indeed feel cozy with it anyways. Now, the 5 or so days I spent there were by no means perfect (2 days in particular which I’ll get to), but it was overall great. The guy in charge of Electronics (not sure the official Target lingo for it–my training is virtually non-existent) must really like me, because he gave me a couple of specific tasks to do–and the fact that he got me into Electronics in the first place.
The work days flew by: something you can’t say about every job–even as a seasonal worker. But there were two days that really made my skin crawl. On one day, we had no PDA for 3 hours of my 8 hour shift. Oh, and for the majority of those 3 hours, I was the senior-most TM in Electronics, with a cross-training Cashier to back me up. Yes, at 5 days in, I was the senior-most member of what is easily the most important department of any retail outlet. If you don’t work Electronics, you maybe don’t understand why having no PDA is such a big fuckin’ deal. Keep in mind, I am still new, and this is after Black Friday… And again, this is Electronics. CDs and movies (but especially CDs) are a mess to begin with, but just imagine what it looks like after Black Friday–which I thankfully didn’t have to work, just the Saturday and Sunday after–yeah… But mostly it was a great experience. I love a fast-paced environment. What I don’t love, however, is what happened that day (but much more so the next day I’ll describe), when Guests walked out the door because we couldn’t help them find what they were looking for. This isn’t a can of soup that they decided to buy elsewhere. These are games, or TVs, HUNDREDS of dollars of easy sales that decided to spend that money elsewhere.
Now, that day wasn’t so horrible, especially compared to the next day (I want to say it was Saturday and Sunday, following the weekend immediately after Black Friday–hope you follow that). No PDA for a good… 7-7.5 HOURS of my 8 hour shift. Let’s say maybe $500 walked out the door the previous day? Multiply that by… Eh, 5 just for good measure. Yeah, and even that is probably a low figure. Not only did I have to deal with that, but passive-aggressive (more aggressive than passive) TMs who seemed to think I didn’t know about locating merch on the computer… The problem is, with no PDA, and no tag, you’re totally fucked. How can you pull something? Or when you call for another TM to search it, and get no response, then what?
I genuinely enjoy helping people. I love to see people satisfied with my work, or satisfied that they were able to get their hands on the new game they’ve been waiting for. Call me crazy, but I believe customer service should be focused on… Well, customer service.
But even with those two days, I remain enamored with the department generally.
Then, yesterday I’m told I’m officially Hardlines. I was just getting ensconced in another department, and then this happens. Now, I’ve been called in for 4 shifts that I was not scheduled on. I took them, no complaint. Because if it’s not apparent, I love the job I had until yesterday. I love to work, and I’m a damn good worker. 4 days I’ve given them, at the drop of a hat. I’m asking for just 3 days off. Granted, it’s the holidays and I’m a seasonal worker. But c’mon, 3 for 4? That’s totally a bargain. I’m not asking for the 24-26th off (though I’m not even sure if we’re open then)–shit, I’d gladly take the 24th and 26th–I get out of the obligatory family church shit.
Today, I nearly cried (yet again). But this time it was in front of the man who’s my new boss. In his office. Being lectured about how I’m ‘coming to him with problems and not solutions’. Whatever the fuck that means. I got the 3 days off. And suddenly I’m at fault for not asking ?s. When I did ask ?s, there was no time to explain. I had to fend for myself. And that’s fine–again, in that 5-10% of the store. This is 75% of the store. The worst part is, Electronics NEEDS the manpower. So, besides my boss basically saying I’m a shit worker and need an attitude adjustment, I also learned today my expertise means shit. A TM called on the walkie asking if we carry something. I was 92.735% sure we do (spoiler alert: I was right). I answered affirmatively, another TM to the contrary. About 5 minutes later (Target’s idea of speedy customer service), another TM announced we do indeed carry that item. But the Guest already left the store. Probably in frustration never to return to Target again. Because I don’t mean shit to these people. That was another thing about my boss today: after telling me I have a horrible attitude (I did not swear, yell, or even raise my voice to him) and should be asking ?s (which is laughable, because, again, nobody has time to answer those ?s, they expect you to know shit that you haven’t been told at all–like today when a kid spilled his popcorn, and I called for help to clean it up, I was told I’m “not supposed to leave the spill” (I was never further from 3 feet from it… A dry, non-toxic spill that I condensed to a little pile with paper towels)), and me nearly fucking CRYING in front of him (sorry, but I tend to lose my shit when I feel totally disrespected), suddenly he and I were gonna be buddies and he would be so nice to show me around and help me out (which was mostly just a huge power trip for him and a shitton of condescending bullshit for me to deal with).
Oh, and I should add that this is like… I don’t know, my 6th or 7th job. So this bullshit about me not being a good worker, or talking to me like this is my first job, or that I’m some stupid kid just because I’m 20 years old should not be fucking happening.
The Electronics Team Leader (whatever that means) said he would try to get me back into Electronics (he saw me about 5 minutes before I clocked out (I’ve been trying to hang out there as much as I can these past 2 days: to spite the Hardlines boss, because I love and miss it and the TMs, oh and as I’ve said before, THEY NEED THE FUCKING HELP)). I’m not sure how serious he was, or if he’ll do it, or if it’ll accomplish anything, but that’s all I have. I mean, what the fuck else can I do?