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#1 Posted by sirkibble2 (58 posts) -

So, I just started a new job at The UPS Store. A friend of mine who works above the store knows the manager very well since he always has to go down there to mail and ship stuff. So, as a guy in need of a job, my friend and their entire business (I know everyone there) put in a good word for me. The manager interviewed me but she was hesitant to take me on because I didn't have retail experience or packaging experience. But she decided to take me on anyway because she lost three employees in 3 months - one was stealing - and the Christmas season is approaching so she needed someone to help.

I just finished my eighth day and I'm ready to call it quits. I'm know I'm capable of doing the job but it's taking me a very long time to learn everything and she's giving me hell. My boss has been doing this for 15 years and is a micro-managing nut. I don't have room to breathe. I totally understand that she needs to guide me but she steps in on everything. I was putting a package against a wall to create space and I moved another box momentarily cause it was in my way and she questioned why I didn't put the boxes against the wall first. I should've finished doing that first. Super nitpicky. And she says she used to be worse.

It's hard to learn in that environment because you try to do something but she throws her 15 years of experience at me and tells me how to do something her way. I don't have a chance to get the concept in my head cause I'm thinking about doing that actual task right and doing it exactly the way she does it.

And there's so much detail and nuance it's given me mad respect for anyone in the postal and parcel business. How to pack things, what to pack them with, what a specific package is, etc.

We've all shipped and mailed stuff. We go into a store with an item, tell someone we want it shipped to some place, then they process it and we're out the door. Never knew certain packages actually had different designations beyond envelope and parcel. It's just so much to take in and it's making me doubt my ability to do the job.

Most days I've come home mentally and emotionally drained from my boss's excessive badgering and all the information I'm trying to take in. I hate the job but I don't have any clearly open opportunities. So, I'm stuck for now.

Anyone else work at a place like this? Was it hard for you to understand?

Definitely felt good to vent this a bit. If you read all of it, kudos to you and I should give you cookies for reading it. Didn't expect it to be this long.

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#2 Posted by CornBREDX (7364 posts) -

I can tell you're young and from your own words inexperienced.

You have to look at these things sometimes from the managers perspective. She has had several employees who were punks (fairly recently) and this has probably colored her perspective of new employees. You've only been working there eight days- she doesn't even know you yet.

Instead of getting upset about the way she micro manages you, learn from her experience at the job as well as getting to know her as a person. If she's cool she'll figure out who you are and in time (could be a few months, and that's ok) she will leave you alone to do the job she pays you for. You have to earn that trust.

If she seems to continue to breath down your neck even when you prove yourself then you should respectfully confront her about it and let her know you need space to do the job she wants you to do. There's nothing wrong with doing this and will even show good initiative if shes a good manager. If she gets mad at you for this then she may not be the best qualified manager and you should look for another job.

Managers are people too. It's hard to remember that sometimes because they are superiors. Usually (not always, granted, but you shouldn't assume that), though, they are superiors for a reason and it helps to show them respect. She hasn't earned much in her life, but she's the manager of a UPS store and she clearly takes that seriously. I can respect that, but that's all I really know about her from your story.

As for your "doubting your ability to do the job" again you've only done it for 8 days. Don't quit now. Giving up on something as menial as the UPS store would not look good for you in the long run. I'm not saying this is a job you should stick with forever, but every job you do is a stepping stone and should not be taken for granted. Especially these days when jobs are hard to come by for a lot of people. Give the job the respect it deserves and life should reward you for that. That isn't wishful thinking- working hard does pay off no matter what job you do.

Stick with it.

Just some life advice. Hope it helps in some way.

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#3 Posted by sirkibble2 (58 posts) -

@cornbredx: I've actually thought about all that already, so your words are right on the money and I appreciate that. I was venting in my post. It's been a taxing eight days. I'm at a place where I could quit but I'm not going to. I have a family to take care of and like I said, I'm stuck. ;) And to be fair to her, she is nice. She really is. It's just when it comes to matters of the store, she becomes a totally different person. Rightfully so. It's her baby.

Either way, the advice is good and even though I'm young (28 to be exact), I have thought about it so it's just good confirmation for me to keep going.

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#4 Posted by GetWoody (8 posts) -

I work at one right now, but it's a chill environment, so I guess it's not really comparable. I will say, however, that it gets easier. Stress is one of the biggest deterrents when it comes to a new job, so just find a way to relax and not focus on being perfect with what you do.

And 28's not young brotha. You should probably think about breeding soon.

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#5 Posted by SSully (5631 posts) -

Yup! It was my first job in high school. Honestly it just sounds like your boss is kind of a dick. It really is a lot to take in at once, especially around this time when it is literally going to be getting busier by the day. By the time Christmas rolls around that place is going to be a mad house every single day.

With that said it's actually a super easy job once you learn all the details. After the Christmas season(and the return spree that follows) is over the place actually becomes really chill. I actually got into reading because of that job. There would be downtime of 30+ minutes on somedays so I just started reading books.

My advice is to just try and relax. It sounds like this might be one of your first jobs. That is a scary thing. Just know this isn't going to make or break you. Try to listen to your boss and prove that you aren't one of those assholes that is going to steal from her.

Also don't quit that job for a food industry job. I somehow convinced myself senior year that I didn't need that job anymore and quit. Ended up working at an Applebee's(FUCK THAT PLACE) and as a bus boy in a stadium club of a Baseball park(Less shitty, but still pretty awful compared to UPS).

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#6 Posted by EndlessMike (549 posts) -

Just be glad you're not in the factory.

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#7 Edited by Belegorm (1848 posts) -

I haven't, but as someone who started a new job 4 months ago with very little prior experience, I really, really sucked ass at the job for the first 2-3 months or so. Even now I work at it slower than everyone else. Just remember that your manager is attempting to hold together a whole bunch of moving parts and really wants you to become a well-oiled piece of the machine asap. Sounds kind of sucky and pragmatic but that's pretty much the way it is.

My advice is stick with it and attempt to do as good a job as you can. In 1-2 years, if it still isn't working out, then by all means look for a different job. Especially if the learning curve takes years to get good at it, you should be nervous if you're not planning on spending a lifetime doing it.

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#8 Posted by whitegreyblack (1953 posts) -

Heh, I used to work at one of those up here in Canada back when it was a Mail Boxes Etc. Though I was the graphic designer on staff and was hired primarily to do design and printing, I also did my share of all the tasks in the business from opening and closing the store, sorting mail for box-holders, packing items, and shipping (With any one of 4-5 different carriers! And, back when it was all done with hand-written way-bills!). I also assisted in training new staff, and oversaw some great and not-so-great employees.

Though it might feel overwhelming, micro-management of your tasks and abilities is an absolute requirement at this stage. There is a lot to learn, and the nature of the business means that slip-ups by staff can cost the business not only time, but also money and credibility - not to mention the loss or destruction of a customer's precious items. It will feel like you have an owl peering over your shoulder right now - because that is exactly what you need at this stage, and how you will best be taught the ropes and have your mistakes pointed out and corrected before they become bigger mistakes (or worse yet, a bad habit).

I'd say do not give up yet. You really need to give it at least 3 months before you will just have the base level of understanding of all the nuances and a bit of experience under your belt. You do need to stay pretty on-point at this stage on taking instruction, learning systems, and working on efficiency.

Having a really good boss is really key here. If your boss continues to micro-manage you after 3-6 months, it means a) they are and will always be a micro-manager; or b) perhaps you are still having difficulty in a certain area or still need work on your efficiency and problem-solving. After several months you will be able to see where you can make strides to improve and make the job easier on yourself (that's the efficiency I keep mentioning) or if it is just not a good fit for you.

I hope this is helpful.

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#9 Posted by Sergio (3625 posts) -

Nope, but I did work for UPS at one time loading the containers used for planes.

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#10 Posted by sirkibble2 (58 posts) -

@whitegreyblack: It's funny you mention the essential micro-managing cause I do know it has to happen. But there are times when it's overkill and it's those moments that bother me. But when I'm at the register and she's over me making sure I'm doing it right and she's intersecting stuff, she should be doing that.

@belegorm: You're absolutely right. I'm sticking with it. I know I'll get it in time.

@ssully: It's not my first job at all. Just my first job in retail and shipping and with a very intense boss. I used to work at a smoothie joint in college and that was a madhouse but my managermade learning so smooth for me. It actually brought out the best in me. Granted, there are more details with this UPS job but principles still apply.

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#11 Edited by Yesiamaduck (2545 posts) -

Most new jobs are tough the first month or so, you might be doing something which may seem fairly rumornial, but everything from lack of muscle memory and down to constantly learning about the companies standard procedure and processes make a job way harder. It'll click eventually, you may still not like it and call it quits, but it's a feeling you're probablygoing to need to get used to, second guessing yourself every step of the job is the biggest hurdle to overcome once you've got a grasp on things you'll find everything else will come to you more naturally.

I used to work for anc in the UK, got bought out by Fed ex, and it got to the point where I was blindly throwing things into the correct cages, when I started it couldn't have been further from the truth.

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#12 Edited by Sanity (2207 posts) -

All jobs suck at first, i started a job at a plumbing and heating company last year with almost no experience and let me tell yea that was stressful as hell, my advice is this: do what they tell yea and dont stress out a ton, remember that your going to make mistakes no matter what and im sure your boss will understand within reason, its part of learning. Just stay calm and work hard, if you do that your work will show for its self and hopefully your manager will start to lay off you a bit. Good luck to yea.

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#13 Posted by sirkibble2 (58 posts) -

@sanity: Your name is so appropriate.

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#14 Edited by SSully (5631 posts) -

@sirkibble2: Well it sounds like your boss might just be a pain in the ass. If I would you I would stick it out for a bit longer. If she continues to make the place tough to work at then maybe start looking for somewhere else to work.