Thursday, 4 July 2013

Job Appreciation

I am a cashier.

It's not true that anyone can be a cashier. In my years as a cashier I have seen many people come and go. Contrary to popular lore it is NOT an easy job. Customer service takes a great deal of mental fortitude and emotional stamina.

The job itself SHOULD be relatively easy.

You stand behind a till and you ring in orders. You accept cash, you bag things (maybe), you smile and politely send people on their way. That seems to be it but that's not the whole story.

Customer service puts you in the front line of humanity's worst moments.

As a cashier you have to smile and agree, even when the person before you is being rude or stupid.

As a cashier you have to always, always, ALWAYS, maintain your calm, even when the person before you is being unreasonable.

As a cashier, if you mess up, even a little, you will NEVER be forgiven. Ever. So you have to be perfect, at all times.

As a cashier you will have to deal with people looking down on you. People thinking you're only a cashier because you couldn't do any better. People who will mock you to your face because you couldn't possibly understand being tired because you're just a cashier.

As a cashier you will, almost every day, be made to feel like you are somehow less than the person on the other side of the till. Because you are in a position of service you will be treated like little more than a brainless servant.

The great challenge of customer service isn't the job. The job itself is actually very easy.

The great challenge of customer service is the people.

But the great reward of customer service is the people too.

For every person who is rude or obtuse, there are four who are kind and brilliant.

For every person who is unreasonable and angry, there are five who are calm and laughing.

For every person who is unforgiving and expecting perfection, there are ten who understand that you're human first and a cashier second.

For every person who looks down on you for being in 'customer service', there are twenty who recognize just how taxing customer service can be.

For every person who makes you feel like 'less', there are hundreds who make you feel like a friend.

This isn't a post to complain.

It's just a post to say...

Yes. I am a cashier.

And I love my job.

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You know what I hate? Narcissism! You know what I love? ME!