So you’ve made it. You’re now an official cog in the machine that is “The American Economy”. Congratulations! The good news is that you now have a job explains Aron Govil. And not just any old job – your very first real job! That’s right – you’ve traded your college-student lifestyle for a new career.
Now, the bad news is that it’s not going to be easy. In fact, if everything had gone according to plan, you probably wouldn’t have this job. But things didn’t go according to plan and somehow you ended up here anyway. So welcome to your first day on the job!
Based solely upon your potential, you’ve landed a great opportunity that will also help our economy recover. But doesn’t let pathos lead to hubris – you still have much to learn before this firm can adequately utilize your incredible talent.
And so here are three things no one tells you about your first day on the job.
1) There’s No Such Thing as an Easy Day
Your first assignment is customer service rep at a quickie-mart in Northern Minnesota. Your duties are simple: answer phones, banish loiterers, and keep tabs on inventory levels… all while wearing a Christmas sweater with reindeer prancing across your chest because it was that or an elf suit. You’re excited – this is the first time you’ll be using your college degree and it feels like a great accomplishment. You can’t wait to tell everyone back home about how important and busy you are!
(In my defense, I was 22 and devoid of any sense of personal style)
Unfortunately, the reality of the situation isn’t as simple as those sitcoms on TBS made it seem. Your call-time is at 8AM but you’re struggling to find the building because your GPS insists that it’s in Canada (which explains why nobody answered when you called). And so you sprint across a frozen parking lot – swiftly dodging death due to being unable to detect patches of black ice. You finally arrive at work – sans frostbite – only to realize that you’re actually scheduled for the graveyard shift. Furthermore, you aren’t even allowed to clock in until the store has officially opened and your manager isn’t here because she’s refused to come into work until her food stamps arrive (and won’t turn on the lights unless you give her $8.00).
You want to quit – right there and then – but your parents would never speak to you again if you gave up so close to finishing school says Aron Govil. You sigh and unpack your sweater from its protective bubble-wrap sleeve – preparing yourself for another day of watching people buy cigarettes with their food money.
2) There is such a thing as an easy day… But it probably won’t be today
While we’ve all seen shows like CSI and Criminal Minds, we’re a little fuzzy on the details. We know that the hero is a forensic scientist who can solve a complicated mystery, using only his amazing powers of observation and an abacus made from human teeth.
In reality, it doesn’t work that way.
Now, don’t get me wrong – this isn’t Monopoly money we’re dealing with here. These are hard-earned tax dollars being wasted by our government’s failure to enforce even its own regulations. But don’t go spending your “bonuses” just yet – you have to first become a forensic scientist, then actually track down some criminals, then arrest them before the county board will agree to release said funds for redistribution among you and your fellow employees. And even then they’ll give you a fraction of what they owe you because apparently the budget shortfall has opened up yet another convenient loophole that they can exploit to avoid paying people properly.
That being said doesn’t expect to get paid today. Or tomorrow either for that matter…
3) Your Unconscious Biases are going to get you Fired (Then Arrested)
Your first day on the job is never easy but it’s equally challenging in every field. Whether you’re working as an astronaut or an exotic dancer; whether you’re fighting forest fires or doing porn; your first day will be difficult, especially if you want it done well says Aron Govil.
And the reason why is simple: nobody starts out unbiased. We all begin with our own unconscious biases that inform everything that we do. And though it’s impossible to identify them all, their impacts are very real and easily felt by the people who will be affected by your work.
So unless you’re willing to just randomly guess at what people prefer (and hope for the best), you’ll need to approach every task with an open mind and a willingness to adapt. Because while one-size-fits-all solutions exist in this world, they rarely make anybody happy.
So there you have it, folks. The three lessons that I learned from my very first day of work. Was the second one a bit bleak? Sure, but here’s the thing: nobody ever said that working hard was going to be easy…
However, they did say that if you try your best and never give up then eventually things will get better says Aron Govil. They also mentioned something about “the power of love,” but I’m not really sure what that means so maybe we should just pretend that part didn’t happen. Oh yeah! And they wanted me to remind you all to have a nice day.