Anybody can tell you that I am definitely not a proponent of minimum wage work. Heck, I wouldn’t be at school if I wanted to keep working a minimum wage job my whole life.
That is not to say that it is terrible. There are some people who like working minimum wage jobs and enjoy it.
Just not me. You know what I’m sayin’?
Anyways, I work at Cracker Barrel Old Country Store as a cashier, so I basically see every person who walks in and personally meet them before they walk out. I get people from all walks of life and all types of personalities. Moreover, I get a plethora of attitudes and feelings thrown at me that have nothing to do with me.
I used to resent that fact, but now I am realizing that it is making me a more well-rounded person.
Public Relations is all about handling people even at the worst of times. Sometimes ESPECIALLY at the worst of times. For every person that I help who gives me a hard time, I am learning how to become a better PR professional.
These are the kinds of people I will have to deal with and account for on a daily basis when I create and implement strategies for a business. To put it frankly, I am becoming a better damage-control artist.
People will rave on and on about a bad experience at a business, but will hardly ever talk about the good aspects. I see this every day when I talk to guests at Cracker Barrel. I can get ten customers that will have a great time and will remark about it within 3 to 5 words. “The server was nice” “The food was good”, simple things like that.
Then comes the person with a bad experience. BUM BUM BUUUMMMM. Watch out because they are on a rampage.
I politely ask how their meal was… and then the floodgates open.
This usually persists for about 3 minutes with an in-depth description on every single detail that was wrong with their experience. This goes to show that anger is a much more passionate emotion than happiness, but I digress.
I have to try to defuse the situation and try to encourage the guest to calm down. Sometimes I have to get the manager up to handle an issue out of my jurisdiction, but mostly I have the ability to handle it.
I do this every day, but it wasn’t until recently that I realized what an amazing experience this is to get.
The more time I commit to handling problems on a personal and face-to-face level, the more knowledge I will have on how to handle systemic issues that I will find later in my career.
The point of this post boils down to this: No matter where you are at in life right now, there is still something to be learned that will help you in the future.
You just have to see it.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this blog are my own and do not represent the views of Cracker Barrel Old Country Store as a business or a brand.