Monday, November 25, 2013

Making a Change

Recently, I started getting a vibe from the owner of the shop where I work, a "things aren't quite right" type of vibe.  The manager of the Ka'anapali shop also started seeming more distant, and occasionally openly discouraging. I suggested some changes, modernization type things, to processes that would make the shops run more efficiently and better enhance the flow of information from the owner downward. "Leave her alone and let her run her own business," she told me. "She doesn't need your help."

I sensed my time with the galleries might be a bit shorter than I would hope. When the owner presented me with a spreadsheet showing my average sales per shift, and another with numbers I would be expected to hit, unachievable numbers based on the shifts I'm allowed to work, the writing on the wall became clearer. I needed a new job soon.

Luckily for me, a new outlet mall opens next month. This means that dozens of retail shops are hiring. People leave their current jobs for new opportunities, opening up even more positions I might be able to land in. I had The Hubby polish up the resume, I fired up craigslist, and I started applying for jobs.

I started receiving calls within an hour! It seemed I no sooner had hit submit on the final app I intended to complete that day than my phone rang from that very company. By noon the next morning, I fielded four phone calls and agreed to three interviews. I would need only one.

On the morning of my birthday, I piloted the Jeep over to the Cannery Mall for an interview at a small table outside the Starbucks. Being dressed appropriately, a small step above business casual, I found myself surprised when I shook the hand of a kid nearly half my age clad in board shorts, a striped t-shirt, and a newsie hat. I suppose I hid my surprise well as the interview seemed to end favorably.

Two days later, I accepted an offer from the kid - probably shouldn't call him that since he's my boss, but he really is young enough I could be his mother - I interviewed with and scheduled my orientation. I cancelled all of the other interviews I had scheduled. This job feels right. I told The Hubby I'd be working at The Gap and he mentioned an article he had read just the day before citing The Gap as being 9th on a list of ten best companies to work for.

I carpooled with the GM and one of his assistant managers to orientation, held at the Old Navy store on the other side of the island. I was quite thankful for the car ride. Orientation started at 8am and the earliest I could get there by bus would be 8:15. Bus? Yes, bus. The Jeep was out of commission that day.

Both the carpool - well, more like the conversations had during the drive - and orientation reinforced my feelings about taking the new job. I believe I will really enjoy working for The Kid, and for the company. I'm excited.

At orientation, I learned I would need to be 100% available during the week prior to the mall opening. Holding a Grand Opening on Dec 6 means a ton of work needs completed and the entire staff needs to be available for set up every day. They need so much help that week that even The Hubby will be working for them for a week!

The availability issue left me with choices that needed to be made. In the end, I decided that trying to juggle my schedule at the gallery to enable me to work what is needed at The Gap, and then trying to juggle two jobs on a longer term basis, would simply be too difficult for me. I tendered my resignation upon arriving at the gallery this morning.

I parted ways with the gallery on amicable terms - both sides knew the fit wasn't there - and they asked me to not work my remaining shifts this week so, in a sense, I'm unemployed for a week. Just a little tweak to my Maui adventure, one that might find me riding in The Jeep to Hana later this week!

After that, time to get knee deep in cargo shorts and polo shirts :)