Well, I have one week left in the abominable pit I’ll come to know as my ex- employer on Friday. With so little time left I have some general musings and recollections of an extremely odd year of employment at a plumbing supply house (Not where I thought I’d end up at after 4 years of college, but hey life is a wild ride). Some of these are practical while others take a more jovial approach, but all are relevant.
Disclaimer: This post is satirical, hypothetical and is in no way an accurate representation of how I conduct myself in a professional work environment.
- Okay...some guy just asked if he could buy a microwave. This is a PLUMBING supply warehouse. It is simply maddening what comes through our doors. Maddening.
- Exhibit A: This man did not speak English. and he is stacking two fixtures that in no way belong together. After which he took a picture of said rig and went to Home Depot because apparently premium service just isn't good enough and he wanted PVC on the cheap.
- Plumbing is expensive. Large plumbing corporations rob you blind. In 10 years you’ll pay $2000 for a water heater. There’s not a whole lot you can do about it. Blame the government and increasingly strict Naeca Standards. Plus, it’s a dying trade and there are very few young plumbers. It’s a dying necessary trade. It’s not going away and it’s only going to get more expensive. I guess no one wants to deal with sh*t for a living, who knew?
- People will tell you that after one good interview you should still keep looking for a job. Those same people will tell you that you shouldn’t quit your current job before you have something definitely lined up. Those people haven’t sat in my desk shooting rubber bands at a mousetrap for 5 hours. They don’t know, so I ignored them. Yeah, it paid off.
- Getting a lease on an apartment 300 miles away? Not that hard. Just become good friends with a local bank teller who will notorize things for you for free because you’re charming. (I know, I’m full of myself) Actually…that has very little to do with getting an apartment. My brother did all the work. I just wanted to point out that miscellaneous services don’t always have to cost money.
- For the most part, any sort of corporate half of a business entity is viewed as the Darkside by lower level employees. If you’re lucky enough to be on the green side of the fence just accept that everyone is going to hate you and dry your tears with your larger paycheck. This includes management. That, my friends, is the promise land. Those who can’t do – manage…and they get paid more money for it.
Side Bar: I think as a general rule of thumb no matter what you're doing the people will always be better than the job itself. I'd rather work with awesome people at a dead end job then, you know, the scum of the earth and have great dental.
- Before quitting make sure to clear your internet search history. Not that you were looking at anything bad, but you certainly don’t want the next guy sitting at your desk asking questions about why you googled “Best moments of The OC” or “how much gunpowder you need for a hand grenade.” You may need a recommendation later and the last thing you need is a reference saying you might be a terrorist.
- For the most part, when asked to do something you don’t want to do it simply do it poorly and they won’t ask you again. Disclaimer* this only works if you do other things well. The trick is to convince them of your value while sidestepping the truly difficult tasks.
- Sick days are your right as an employee. Some people reserve them for near death days, but please, for the love of all that is good and pure…No one wants your cold. Just chill at home and get paid for it, alright?
- Office pranks are fun. However, it is important to gauge your target’s tolerance before springing a trap. Some people don’t like having their chair bungee chorded to their desk. Ridiculous, right? Also, when leveraging explosives such as small fire crackers check blast radius.
- It is important that after you make a mistake you adamantly stand behind your mistake until your boss forgets this issue entirely. Not that you were right, but something more important is bound to come up and you’ll have to deal with far less dire repercussions. Works well so long as you stop your tomfoolery and fix your mistake quietly. How am I supposed to know the ins and outs of operation if no one tells me anything. Forgiveness > Permission. Albeit all this could be for not and you'll go to your desk on day and this will be there:
- If you have an extremely mundane job its VERY important to keep a lighthearted mindset with talking with people on the phone. Joking around with people and flirting with older women at other distributing companies is not only a great way to pass time but raises morale.
- Along those same lines, when solicitors ring, do your best to entertain them for as long as possible. Odds are they need the experience, and convincing someone you’re the Executive Quality Management Director can lead to and extremely entertaining conversation.
- Sometimes those co-workers you can’t stand just need someone to talk to. If you’ll take the time listening to their analysis of how they invented the fishing rod or encouraged Hyundai to make some sports car a 4 door or how good Frank Zappa is or their knowledge of the composition of a meteorite you’ll come to realize that they really weren’t worth wasting your time on in the first place. They’ll get fired. Just hang in there.