Out of all the things that I said I planned to be when I grew up, I can assure you being verbally abused/attacked, overworked and underappreciated were not a part of those plans. Entrepreneurship was not necessarily a part of my thought process when I younger. Everyone around me went to work. Professional “corporate America” type. Educators, chefs, laborers, legal aids, they all went into Someone else’s establishment and worked. That’s just what was considered normal in my world. As I grew a little older I remember coming in contact with more people that Wanted to work for themselves but…..
“I can’t right now, don’t have the funds”
“I can’t right now, I don’t have the time”
“I can’t lose my insurance.”
“I’ll start after I pay off the car.”
“I’ll start after the kids are a little older.”
“I’ll start once I get my credit/debt together”.
Just to name a few.
I’ve spent the last 12 years working in sales and customer service related positions. I’ve worked for really good companies and I’ve worked for companies that eventually closed due to poor business decisions and poor business practices. One thing that is consistent, I’ve never been adequately paid for my skills and knowledge. It bothers me because of my work ethic compared to my peers. I’ve almost always stood out in training classes and amongst my peers, yet to be compensated at the same rate is sickening to my stomach. This may be one of the reasons I stayed in Sales for so long. Bonuses and commissions became my reward(Never cared for public recognition).
No matter how hard I worked or how well I did, a lot of times I found myself getting discouraged because of pay, policy, management, or sometimes just a lack of fulfillment in my role.
Recently, I overheard a department manager speaking to one of my direct supervisors about an upcoming benefits meeting. The benefits meeting was only going to be held at our location twice that week and we had over a hundred people that needed to attend. It was really important to attend considering we only had a week left to sign up for benefits or we would have to wait until the following year. The department manager was trying to convince the supervisor to ask some of us to work through our lunch so that “His phones can be covered.” When that didn’t work he then suggested having some people stay longer or come in on their off day(unpaid) to attend this meeting. I was disgusted the way he completely disregarded the importance of this meeting. Also, the idea that you’re okay with breaking labor laws and I’m sure a few others just so you could have extra “coverage”. Not that it should matter all that much, but we were somewhat slow that day. I shouldn’t be surprised considering this is a company that makes you clock out for bathroom breaks……..
It truly makes me sad that I’m not valued by an employer that literally takes up at least 40%-50% of my day(I work at least 10 hour days). One of the final straws for me was
volunteering working extra hours the next day(due to business needs, of course). I asked to go home an hour early(our slow period) to prepare for the early hours the next day. The request was denied. That meant by the time I got home, I would only have 8.5 hours left before I had to be back at work the following day. I was exhausted and I’m pretty sure some laws were broken that day.
Why would I give my all to a company that is only looking for Superior work with Minimum pay? Why would I give my all to a company that doesn’t care about my health(I’ve been severely sleep deprived at times)? If I’m going to invest that type of energy into anything, it’ll be myself and my own brand. I’ve gained the experience with each job I’ve had, experience that will allow me to successfully work for myself. So why not?