This I Believe

Kirsten - Reno, Nevada
Entered on October 16, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: respect

This I Believe

Saturday night, working hard and under pressure with an inevitable lack of employees and I still managed to keep a smile on my face—despite my urges to grimace in anger and scream at every passing customer. A customer had just complained to me that she had been waiting in line to skate for ten minutes—“a ridiculous amount of time to wait just to skate”—and that my job requires better service. As much as I wanted to bark back at the lady, “Well if waiting in line for ten minutes is so ridiculous, then maybe you should go spend your time elsewhere!” I knew that I had to keep my composure and provide the best customer service. I apologized to her about having to wait so long and explained that due to the lack of employees currently working, we had to distribute out resources. Still, she had no mercy on me: tossing her money at me, rolling her eyes, and sighing loudly in disapproval. Nights like these I always pondered how many people with empathy were left in the world; I also gained a belief from my job, working with the general public, that customers should be more considerate of general workers.

Knowing what it is like to be bombarded by intelligent, irritable patrons, I am always sure to use my manners when shopping at others’ places of employment. When ordering takes longer than expected, instead of finding the first possible target in uniform or ranting and raving for the manager, I consider possibilities for why something is taking longer than expected—a machine breaking down, having to restock, lack of employees; alternate possibilities than “bad service”.

I appreciate seeing others being polite when they are shopping or ordering something and being understanding when there is a hold up, especially when they use their manners toward me. There was a time at work when I had to host a birthday party that ran twenty minutes late due to miscommunication regarding food preparation. I was so upset about it that I personally addressed the parents of the party and told them how sorry I was about their party being late, assuring them that I would make up for it. Understandingly, they thanked me for letting them know what happened, smiled, and told me not to rush.

Working at the skating rink for about a year now, I learned that jobs like this are life lessons that most people will encounter—from which some may learn, some may not. The lesson in these jobs is to obtain a greater understanding for respect and politeness. I believe I had learned this lesson from my job and truly believe people should be more considerate of the “behind-the-scenes” workers—without thinking irrationally that everyone must be considerate and competent at all times. Because many general workers work their hardest, trying to please and serve customers, consumers, or clientele as best they can.