LIMES Week 2 Challenge - Getting to Know Me, Part 3
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
The Work Part - What I Do and How I Got There
It's an unusual tale. I worked for a furniture chain, opening the first store in CT shortly after I moved here from California. Apparently, I made a lasting impression on one of my co-workers. She had left the company and went to work for a temp/placement agency and when a particular job came across her desk she thought of me. She tried the store and learned that I no longer worked there. I had walked out just a couple of weeks prior, something I'd never done. Anyway she tracked me down and set me up to interview at a small family owned furniture store and that is where this tale begins.
I worked at this small family owned furniture store that had been in business for more than 60 years. They brought me in to assist the owners, two sisters, in the day to day management of customer service in the store. One of the sisters was in her early 40's and pregnant with her first child. I took on some of her duties and was there to fill in during her maternity leave. I absolutely loved these women and we had a very special relationship, not your typical boss/employee relationship. We were very close, like family. When times were tough they were there for me and always looked out for me. I was there about 2 and a half years when they announced that they had sold the store. By this time, the younger sister had had her second child and was in a position, financially, to be a stay at home mom and the older sister was ready for retirement and wanted to move closer to her daughter and granddaughters. It was such a sad day for me, but they stayed in touch and continued to look out for me. The younger sister had mentioned, in passing, over the next 2 or 3 years that I should go and talk with her husband about a job. He owned a company with his brother-in-law. an environmental services company with a couple of different divisions. I never gave it much thought because I actually liked what I was doing. After about 2 and half years, the younger sister again said to me that I needed to go and talk with her husband about a job. She said it was time. There was something in the way that she said it, that made me set an appt to go an talk to him. Apparently it was all just some sort of a formality because he offered me a job without much of an interview. We pretty much just chit-chatted and got up with each other. I'd never even known such a business type existed, much less anything about what I'd be doing, but he gave me the opportunity anyway. I'm a quick learner and that was something he saw first-hand when I worked for his wife. I had worked for him and his brother-in-law just shy of a year and a half when it was announced that the division that I worked in had been sold to a giant corporation, but not to worry because my old boss's husband was part of the deal and he'd be going with those of us that were being kept by the new owner. It was evident in the first few months that the new ownership did not have the same values as the old and things were going to be very different. The customer did not matter anymore and they made it extremely difficult, if not impossible, to provide anything remotely resembling the level of customer service that we had previously taken so much pride in giving. It wasn't long before they started letting people go. I lasted 13 months before they laid me off.
The very next day I was at a wrestling tournament that my sons were competing in and I ran into one of the partners that stayed with the part of the company that had not been sold, so I said to him, "you probably already know, but I am unemployed, and if anything opens up I'd love to come back and work for you again." I was kind of joking on the one hand, but on the other, I really wasn't. I know I didn't give it much thought after that. About 2 weeks later I got a call, and guess what they wanted me back. So, here are 3 jobs that I never even had to look for. They all just fell into my lap. I've been back for 3 yeras now and I love my job. Oh, by the way, did I mention that the company was sold about a year ago? Yep, that's right...I was sold by the same family 3 times. that must be some sort of a record, right?
So what do I do there? I am transitioning into one job, where I previously wore many hats. My primary focus will be credit and collections, with a little billing sprinkled in. Up until now, I was actually doing credit and collections, a little billing, dispatch, and customer service. I have to admit that I'm a little nervous. Not in my ability to do the job, just that it will become monotonous. I really like having such a wide variety of things to do, it makes the day go so fast. I thrive in a more chaotic environment, but I will give it my all as I always do.