Over spring break, when most people were on the beach or skiing in the mountains, I was cleaning caked-on mold from the drains in my store to keep it from flooding more than it already was. As I sat there, poking down the drain with my hands, I took a second and asked myself “Why am I doing this and not the plumbers?” Needless to say, I put in my two weeks notice later that week.
Although it probably should’ve been, cleaning the mold and listening to my employees make jokes about the ‘hurricane’ in the store wasn’t my last straw. It was the constant stress and overworking, the mold was simply the tipping point. Here are the other 5 reasons I quit my job as a fast food manager:
- I Was Tired Of Being Yelled At
I am a people pleaser so, I love working fast food, serving people, and being busy. I love it so much that I worked two fast-food jobs this semester. But I absolutely despise the fact that a lot of customers do not treat you like you’re human. I have been called racial slurs, had drinks thrown at me, had my life threatened over BREAD, and called the cops an insane amount of times. What made me the maddest at the end of the day was the idea that the “customers are always right.”
I am more than happy to help find solutions or offer a way to help the customer, but verbal altercations are a different story. Plus, being forced to de-escalate a customer who just threw something at you isn’t exactly the easiest thing to do when you’re covered in Pepsi.
What would make a bad situation worse was the follow-ups with corporate. It felt like the customer always got the last word, and it was extremely dehumanizing. I know that there are terrible customers at every job, but I truly feel like my previous job allowed me to be yelled at and belittled constantly. The worst part was that they always followed it up with how I could improve.
- I Was Extremely Underpaid
As I mentioned, while I was managing at one fast food company, I was also working at another fast food company on my campus. My on-campus job paid me more to be a regular employee than my off-campus job paid me to be a manager. When I asked for a raise, I was only offered 50 cents after being there for over a year and a half. For comparison, my on-campus job had given me two raises in a matter of 6 months.
- I Was Never Actually Trained
Not to brag, but I felt like I was a pretty good manager. I significantly improved numbers, I kept reviews up to standard, I hardly wrote people up, I always passed inspection, and I was pretty well-liked. But the issue is, I was never trained. I was just thrown into it. A lot of my first weeks managing were spent figuring out what to do because there was no one who stepped up to train me. I think it allowed me to become very independent, but running an entire store should’ve never been self-taught.
- I Had The Worst Hours
I would work every Saturday from 8 a.m. to midnight (16 hours) as the only manager on duty. When I mentioned to my higher-up that I was exhausted, she responded with how she “never gets a day off.” As insane as it was, I let this go and continued working. I should’ve realized how rude and inconsiderate that was but, I’m a broke college student who needed the money.
Later, I had a conversation with her about my availability during this coming summer break. She told me that my request to open the store was “unfair” to her and other employees. I told her that I would be looking at other options if she wouldn’t be willing to accommodate my hours. She thought I was bluffing, so she waved me off.
- I Did My Job And Everyone Else’s
I enjoy being busy and I hate standing still and sitting in one position. I think that’s why I enjoyed being a manager and dealt with everything for so long. But there is a fine line between being busy and being overworked. I did a lot of things that were not in my pay range like hiring and interviewing higher-ups, training my higher-ups, plumbing, managing at other stores, and so much more. The truth is, I probably would do it again for a different company, but being told I was only worthy of a 50-cent raise after everything I had done for the company was my last straw. So I quit and she finally realized I wasn’t bluffing.
A lot of people would probably tell me that I should’ve sucked it up and that any raise is a good raise. But being overworked like that, especially as a full-time student with another job, was exhausting. I loved being a manager but that specific company wasn’t a good fit for me. The hardest part of quitting was the lack of familiarity. But trust me, I can get over that after everything I’ve been through.
If you’re in the same situation, and you were looking for a sign, here it is! No one should treat you this way. Your mental health is worth so much more than any job out there. I’m not saying to quit your job tomorrow morning and flip off your boss on the way out but, am saying to put yourself first. Understand that weighing your options and looking for better opportunities is not a bad thing, even if it hurts a little at first.