The service industry is tough. Turning on a smile, dealing with upset customers, answering customer questions... keeping people happy is difficult. I actually enjoy meeting new people and believe that I learn something every day from the ones that I work for and around. But, sometimes the customer doesn't want to be a customer. That's right, you are being solicited.
When was the last time you went to a convenience store and told the clerk that their life is heading in the wrong direction? This seems to be happening more and more in what some call 'viral marketing.' Sure, there are companies out there that actively pursue employees as if they were a sale. I'd mention some names but I'd like to cut the lawsuits down to a minimum.
The last few days at work have been solicitation hell. I can't actually count on my fingers and toes how many times I've dealt with this. This one unnamed company is in our building holding sales conferences (I worry that what they are doing is trying to meet people on the street and ask catch them off guard.) As an employee serving a customer, you are pretty much trapped in conversation with them. The conversation usually makes a turn at "So, how long have you been working here." A simple and easy question but you know the follow-up of "How do you like it?" is just awaiting whatever response you have. Now you are trapped. No one likes to work. Everyone wants to be paid more. Everyone would love to have better days off (like football Sundays.) Any way you answer the question you will be given a card, asked for a card, be told about how you can make money in your spare time (I have spare time? Really? Someone drug test this person!) or how something can change your life. I'm devising a plan for the next couple days to combat the scenario without endangering the job but I wonder how often you've felt cornered in the same way?