Life Experience, Marketing, Work

Mind your own business.

My job isn’t a tricky one, it’s not complicated, but it’s not pointless. For those who are super interested, I have the responsibility of maintaining Aesthetic Response’s social media accounts. I’ve been writing tweet streams, posting facts on facebook, writing blogs and updating their website. I’ve also got the pleasure of liaising between various members of the Aesthetic Business Network in regards to filming their events and workshops across the country. Just last week I was in Birmingham and last month, London.

I don’t get paid much, no, that’s a fact. But it’s an internship. They’re not supposed to be paid, but here I am, able to afford my rent for the house that I live in with my friends. But the money isn’t the deciding factor in why I took this job. I’ve been waiting for over a year to get something in marketing; every time I’ve tried, I’ve been let down for ‘lack of experience’. This job is giving me the experience that I need to move on. We live in a world where you can’t just walk into a job straight out of school. You have to shine and be different, while at the same time willing to become a person with no identity, consumed by the company that you work for.

I have another job – it’s part time and it’s stressful and absolutely nothing like the marketing one. It’s at Ness in York city centre and I sell people clothes. I stand in the shop, wearing either my kilt or my stag dress and I convince people that they really need this coat that they can probably live without. It helps me get by. It gives me money for food, money for bills.

I’m working really hard right now and, honestly, I’m drowning. But I don’t care if you don’t agree with my life choices at the moment. Some of the decisions I have made in the last year have been really, really difficult and some I have regretted. I’m not arseing around, not bothering with finding a proper job. I’m trying to support myself so I can live away from home and maybe, just maybe find a career that I actually want to do.

[End of rant]

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Life Experience, Misc.

Feeling Pants is Normal

I’ve been reasonably quiet recently and that’s not because I’m having a whale of a time being awesome and adventurous; I’m currently in the middle of working through a 6 day week.

I’ve never experienced exhaustion like this before. It’s strange because I feel like I shouldn’t be tired. The most hours that I work a day are 6 and work is only a fifteen minute walk away (unlike when I worked at school and travelled 40 minutes each way),  yet I’m really, really struggling to function and stay alert. I’ve put it down to the fact that I’m not necessarily in a job that I want. It’s hard working towards goals that you don’t want, that you never saw yourself doing. It’s always difficult after graduating from university – you’re filled with so much ambition and think that with a degree everything is going to fall into place and your ideal career is just waiting for you. It isn’t. It works out for some people, but for most, like me, it hasn’t so far. That could be why I feel so pants lately. Who knows.

What I need is to chug a Starbucks (conveniently next door) and push on. Something good better happen soon before I give up!

Peace out.

Life Experience, Work, World

My Job Application to the World

Dear World,

I am Brittany Lee Holmes, a 22 year old Film and Television graduate from Yorkshire. I’m currently working as a sales assistant at two different places – a boutique store in the centre of York and the biggest and best railway museum in the country. This isn’t, however, what I want, understandably. My ultimate goal is to be a writer – fictional, journalistic, factual, anything, whether it’s under my own self-employment or within a company. I have a passion for the written word and feel that because it comes to me naturally, I could be successful with it.

My jobs at the moment are to earn money and gain experience in sales because marketing is an area that I have looked at. I have experience in customer service; making people happy and helping them in any way possible. I can handle cash accurately – something that seems to be becoming outdated and old fashioned now that cards and contactless payments are accessible to mostly everyone. Both of my jobs are on the front line, meeting people that are but strangers to me and dealing with some negativity. This is making me a stronger person. After being a meek teenager in high school and sixth form, working at the forefront of these businesses has made me blossom into a confident 22 year old who isn’t afraid of what people have to say to me, regarding the company that I am working for. The nature of my work means that I encounter complaints and unhappy customers, but after many experiences of this, I have developed a hard shell against it and adopted the mindset that it’s not me personally that they can be angry at. I am the face of the company for that few hours every week and nothing they can say will affect me.

My confidence is booming and after working in a high school for a year, I have perfected my poker face and a tone of voice that can send teenagers packing in an instant. I have learned how to command a room, how to grab the attention of disinterested 12 year olds and how to laugh off immature insults like they were little drops of rain. Not only has my time working in a high school given me a much needed confidence boost, it has also shown me what it’s like to work in a big, bustling environment. The job was varied and often I was expected to undertake tasks for which I’d had no training and I achieved things at that school that I never would have imagined I could achieve. I made a lot of friends at the school from all different departments – teachers, receptionists, health professionals, dinner ladies, principals and it’s really given me an insight into how everything runs and how educational establishments function. The reason I undertook this position was to get a taster of what it was like to work in a school because I’d been considering going into teaching. As it happens, I don’t want to be a teacher (yet) but I count it as a significant part of my life that gave me lots of valuable experience and skills I never knew I could have.

I’m applying to the world, appealing to anyone who should read this blog, in the hope that someone, somewhere will read my words and learn a little about my story. I’m not on the look out for someone to give me a wonderful job (as amazing as that would be) but I want this blogging community to know that yes, I’m working somewhere I wouldn’t necessarily choose and no, I’ve not yet given up hope. I’m writing everyday; I will never give up that dream. I shelved the ambition to be a film director a couple of years ago, but being a writer is something that I can really see myself doing and being successful through it.

So, world, hear me. Hear what my little voice has to say and accept me, take me, find me a place in this cut-throat business and let me be useful. Let me speak to the world and let me be who I am. I’m not a sales assistant, I’m not a teaching assistant, I am a writer, I am Brittany Lee Holmes.

Life Experience

Retail Experience

I have a fairly diverse range of experience on my CV but I’ve always been lacking in retail experience. Until now.

I’ve started working at a small boutique store in the centre of York, on one of its most popular and oldy-worldy streets (not The Shambles) and that means the shop reflects the bricks on which it stands.

I seem to be doing alright. It’s pretty much exactly what I expected it to be except that working in a small shop is *kinda boring*. Even though the street it’s on is a reasonably busy street, full of tourists, crammed with shoppers – it’s a difficult one to navigate if you’re on a mission – the shop can be pretty quiet for long periods of time. And when that happens, time stands still and I suddenly feel under an awful lot of pressure to look like the best shop assistant evar. No. I don’t want to bad mouth, I don’t want to complain. I’m still in the phase of comparing it to my last job at the school and that’s a no-no. The jobs are 100% completely different to each other. I just….

I don’t feel challenged.

I don’t feel like my brain is being pushed, I don’t feel like my creativity is reaching its limit and I’m scared that I’m going to lose my drive. I’m not stimulated, I’m not motivated. You’ll notice I’ve started lacking in writing on my blog and I’m often finding myself sitting at home and staring into space when I’ve finished work or even on a day off.

I’m grateful for the extra dosh it’s giving me. And I’m grateful for the experience that I didn’t have before that I can now place on my CV. I just know more than ever now that I need to move on and kickstart my career. It’s time.

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Current feeling
Life Experience

Summer time gladness

Yesterday I got my first glimmer of financial hope in a long time. I got paid! It was barely a week’s worth of pay because I’ve started my new job only just but I’m £75 less in debt than I was on Friday.

There you have it. I don’t feel like I’m gonna choke under a mounting pile of debt now and I might actually be able to treat myself to the odd Starbucks on the way home from work without feeling guilty. Life is looking up, things are getting better and now all I need to do is find myself a career that’s going to set me up for life.

Peace out x

Life Experience

Not to rant but…

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Not only do I earn my money by working at the high school of my teenage years, but I also have a job at the one and only National Railway Museum in York which I have during the school holidays. It’s great actually, having a second job – gives me some extra dollar and it’s a really nice place to work. Makes me quite proud of the fact that I actually work at a National museum, one that people from all over the world come to visit.

There is one thing though. One thing that I can’t really shake about it. As I stand there at the front of the queue, with the best smile I can muster (and believe me, I have a pretty sweet smile) some people seem to greet me with the intention of being nasty. The questions that I’m asked about money and the queue and why are we even waiting here if we’re not paying? If you’d let me explain, dear visitor, you would find out that you’re waiting so that you can be added to the numbers of the museum. Can’t just waltz in like you own the place, I’m afraid.

I’m not trying to say that every person that walks through is horrible because that’s just not true. There are infinite amounts of lovely people that come through the doors and have a chat with me, treating me like the human that I am. It’s just that I’ve always taken things to heart and no matter how many times people tell me not to, it still works like that, which basically means that every mean person actually really hurts my feelings. Every time I’m questioned about the running of the museum, like it’s my fault; every time I’m told it’s not good enough that there’s a massive queue – even though it’s half term…… – it spoils my day that little bit more and makes me not really want to be at work, which just isn’t nice.

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I just don’t understand how you can visit somewhere that’s totally free to get in and begin your day with the mindset of anger and hatred and think it’s okay, because it’s not. I’m not bothered if you’ve had a bad morning or whatever but at 10am during half term (the busiest time of the year don’tcha know) it’s not fair to be so nasty. It’s not fair on anybody, especially not your kids.

This post started out really positively about working at the museum, but thinking about it has brought the cruelty of people to the forefront of my mind. Like, I can deal with difficult kids at school, you can tell them straight that they’re being inappropriate but with adults, it’s not exactly the same. You’ve got to bow down to them and let them treat you like a piece of poo.

Basically, I’m pretty sure any person working in a customer facing role will feel exactly the same about people and understand where I’m coming from and hopefully somebody out there reading this in a bad mood might think twice about what they say to the person behind the counter…just a thought…

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