Saturday, June 28, 2008

My life - working in a gift shop company

It was June 2007 when I started working in a well known gift shop company as an Area Manager. I thought that job was Gods gift to me after working in a American research company for 2 years. I never wanted to leave my job with that company however, I don't have a choice but to move out for financial reason.

To date, Its almost 7 months since I left the gift shop company, I thought I was able to move on after all the trauma I was been. I was not able to find job for 3 months after they decided to end my contract for simple reasons. Though, a co-worker tried to help me to find a job in a cosmetic company and was offered a work as an Executive Assistant and all of a sudden the company decided not to pursue with there offer for no reason at all. See how unprofessional they are.

Why were I traumatized working in the gift shop company. Oh well, I was part of the opening team. I'm one of the first batch to be hired. I was there when the company needs our help for the smooth transition. I gave all my strength and dedication to my work. As an Area Manager to their 4 branches I know I did my best for the betterment of the company. I know that they were expecting a lot from me because of my past experiences in retail business.

I thought I'm doing well at work. The VP would always look for me when they need urgent presentation about the store. Would ask for my assistance to monitor the other branches. The President itself would lend me some books to help me finish the presentation for them. Suddenly after 3 months I received a call from the VP to report to the Head Office first thing in the morning to discuss something. I thought I was terminated cause that time there was a rumor that they terminated the Admin Manager. So I already had the idea that if they dont like the employee they can easily terminate you.

Went to the Head Office, though I was really worried The VP broke the news. I will be transferred to the Head Office to handle the consignment department as an Operation Assistant. I gladly accepted the offer since I thought they had a better plan for my career. I did not asked for their reason why am I being transferred to the office because I trust them that they are professional people.

My staff was so happy for me about the news however, I had the feeling that I was demoted. From AM to OA. With God beside me I did not entertain bad vibes and accepted this new path as a challenge for me to prove them I can handle the task. About 2 weeks in the office they are unsure what responsibility they will entrust me since the Consignment Department of the Old owner of the gift shop company has not turned over all the necessary information to us yet.

When the Operation Manager reported to work, I am under her. Our first assignment was to make a Company Policy. I was able to finish the 80% of the policy before the deadline. However, unexpected situation happened to me about my family and was not able to report to work for 5 days. I did inform them and I said my apologies to them. I know this would affect my evaluation and accepted it if that would affect my evaluation. Since I know I do still have 2 months to prove to them that I can eliminate tardiness and absences.

First Evaluation - I passed it! with 90% grade. VP evaluated me. The only comment I got from the VP was I need to be superior
even though if my staff are older than me. Thats it. Im so glad about my evaluation.

After a week, It was like hell working in the Head Office . I felt demoralized professionally. They have been commenting about my grooming, the way I talked over the phone. They are making gossips about me. Office politics! Gosh! I never been into that kind of politics! This is a hard-core politics. Im not sure who are the true people in the office whom I can trust. Until the day, a manager approached me and warned me about it. She told me that they are planning to terminate me for the reason that I was making gossip about my boss the OM. The OM told my colleuges that I said that "She is a stupid OM and I am more capable in doing her job." I never said that. God knows I never said that. and the rest of the issue are just branch of a tree. To pull my evaluation down.

In 2 months, I felt every discimination at work. The VP would introduce me to there client as the person in charge in Consigment department but when the OM would set a meeting with the client they cant even introduced me nor asked me to join the meeting. I cant spread my wings.. they are already giving me the limitation to handle the task. During those time I approched the VP to give my point of view, though it was really hard for me to talk to her because I also felt a big wall between us. Since the OM and the VP would have a briefing every morning. And in that case I dont have any idea what the OM is telling about me. Its like the VP does not want me to be close to her. But I understand, she's the VP and im only just her staff. Right? Petty issues becoming big issue. Its like i tried not to do things that would affect my credibility but something is there to ruin everything.

Until the 2nd evaluation approaches and only 3 days left before they regularized me. The moment of truth suddenly broke the news. The company decided to end my contract. I failed the evaluation. Reasons: Poor Grooming, Does not want to listen to superior, Cant meet deadlines, Inconsistent and chatting.

Poor Grooming - Admittedly, I am not a good dresser. However, the company allows employee to wear jeans or shorts or t-shirts or daring blouses during weekdays and weekends. I never wore shorts nor t-shirts nor daring blouses at work. I remember I wore "tokong" pants because it was raining hard that day. And also a co-worker was regularly wearing short shorts why is it that its unfair to me?

Does not want to listen to superior / Cant meet deadlines - Instructions are coming from the OM. I regularly update her with the task she entrust me and would ask her to check my work. When I submit my report to the VP the VP would be very dissapointed because I was not able to make the report perfect, because thats not the instruction she gave to the OM. Now, is that flaws? Since OM and I is a one team I have to accept the fact that its also my fault.

Chatting - Yeah. Im chatting but not most of the time or consumed all business hours for chatting. I usually chat with my co-worker or with the HR since the phone line are always busy and they cant get through the lines to inform me of important messages. Now if HR is legal to chat why is it not implement it across all department to banned chatting. Since HR and Operations are working hand in hand.

Why am I still ranting? I do still feel the pain and the trauma. Now im happy with my present work I hope everyone would pray for me to help me surpassed all the stress I went from my past experience and get over this trauma. ANd in time I would be able to forgive the gift shop company and let the bitterness in my heart die. As to the board and directors of the Gift Shop company I pray I would forgive you for showing me the unprofessional manners and non Christian behavior.