Monday, September 11, 2006

My Short-Lived Career

Well, remember that job I was so happy to get? Yeah, it only lasted three days. And, if the truth be told, my happiness about the job only lasted a few hours into the job.

The position was at the Public Guardian's Office. Nice people. Great people, in fact. But the job? Not a good fit for me.

The temp that was leaving trained me on my first day. Of course, in four hours she couldn't show me everything, but she tried to show me some of the important things I would know.

My boss was in meetings all day, so he was not able to sit down with me like he had hoped.

The job itself was mostly legal filing. Every Guardian Case Manager keeps their clients' files in their office, along with an accordion file full of all the legal documents that need to go in those files. And, that's the temp's job: to visit each office, ask if it's a good time to do filing, and then sit in the office and do just that.

On the second day, the temp that trained me had given me some easy financial filing to do to get my feet wet. In the four hours I was there, I pretty much finished the filing.

During the last hour of my work day (the 1-2 p.m. hour), I was to watch the phones for the receptionist, who took her lunch during that time. There is absolutely nothing else for me to do during that time, but sit and watch the phones for an hour. During that particular hour, the most the phone rang was five times. So, that means I spent most of the hour staring at the phone and watching the clock.

On Friday, my third day, the receptionist was on vacation, so my boss (who still was in meetings and had not been able to sit down with me to give me the lay of the land) said that while she was on vacation, I would be manning the phone. I asked if there was anything I could be doing to keep busy while at the reception desk. He said unfortunately not; the only thing he had for me was phone coverage.

I sat down, and waited for the phone to ring.

And waited.

And waited.

After about thirty minutes, I found a magazine at the desk, and started to read. Finally the phone rang. I transferred the call, and went back to my magazine. In an hour, I had finished the magazine.

I took out a book I had brought with me and started to read. About two hours into my day, my boss came out of his meeting (which was still going on) and said to me "You know, I don't go for the book reading thing at work. I think we need to find you something to do." He then directed me to get G. to cover the phones, and sent me back upstairs to do filing. That's when I knew I wasn't going to return.

I spent most of the day filing, and finished the particular project I was working on. I still had 15 minutes to go before leaving. Then I remembered that the other temp had told me on Fridays she empties the recycle bins, so I did that until it was time to go.

At 2 p.m., I looked around for someone to sign my time card. One of the accounting ladies said she could sign it, so I got my card signed, cleaned up the desk I had been at, and left.

I got one block away when I remembered that I had left the book I was reading at the office. I would've just left it there, but it was a library book, so I went back. (The drama in going back has to do with the fact that the doors to the Public Guardian's office are locked, so I would have to ring a bell and get someone to let me in.)

I parked, walked up to the door, and before I could ring the bell my boss answered the door. He had seen me approaching. He apologized for not being able to spend any time with me that week, and said that next week looked just as bad.

He said he promised that the job would get better in time, but until he could spend time with me, I'd have to do simple things, which he knew was boring but at the same time, needed.

I nodded, said something pleasant in return, grabbed my book and left. I didn't tell him I wasn't coming back, because according to the temp agency's handbook, all my dealings were to take place directly with my recruiter.

I drove directly to the temp agency, walked in, and went up to my recruiter. I told her that I wanted to hand in my time card in person as I wanted to let her know that I didn't want to go back there next week. I told her that while everyone at the Public Guardian's office was nice, I did not want to spend next week answering a phone that rarely rings, while just sitting at a desk without anything else to do.

She didn't look surprised.

She asked if I was still interested in part-time work, and I said yes. She shook my hand and thanked me for coming in, and then I was on my way.

When I returned from the Bay Area last night, I checked the local job boards and saw that "my" job was posted on Saturday. I felt slightly guilty, because I had prayed for a job, done magic for a job, got a job, and then gave it up.

Why the guilt when I know this wasn't the right job for me? I have no idea...all I know is that I'm back to the drawing board and a quickly deflating wallet.

1 comment:

Jedi said...

Something will come up :)