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How Working in Retail Helped Build My Confidence

When I first started in the workforce I was pretty young, maybe 15. Some people start younger, but my first job was a paper route. I worked in that job for about a year and then decided it was time to move up in the workforce.

I applied for many part-time positions while I was still in high school, and I felt so hopeless and annoyed that I couldn’t land a position. Eventually, I went into my local grocery store and spoke to an employee about applying. I introduced myself to the manager and a few days later, they asked me to come in, and I had got the job! I was so nervous, but I was also really excited to be making my own money.

Now that I look back at when I started at the grocery store, I realize that it helped me become more social. I was forced to interact with every individual that I served. I know this may seem like an easy task, but I was young, and it was intimidating! I became more confident in myself and my capabilities by doing my job without much assistance.

I feel a lot more confident and less nervous when talking to customers, or just people in general. I have now started my second job in retail, and I feel certain going into the position that I will succeed because I have had similar experiences. I am excited about my new position because although it is a retail position, this job is at a clothing store instead of a grocery store.

It is important to note that even though retail jobs can be fun, they can be super tiring and often customers aren’t the nicest. Another way to build my self-confidence was by not letting customer outbursts affect how I was feeling. At the end of the day, I am there to provide a service and the customer is not thinking about how that will affect me.

Finally, working in retail has taught me to speak up for myself. When I need help or I am unsure of something, I know it is okay to ask for guidance.

Looking back, I feel grateful for my experiences in my retail jobs, and I think everyone, no matter how old they are, should have this experience on their resume!

Kristyn Cole

Wilfrid Laurier '23

Kristyn is an outgoing and determined student who loves to take photos, listen to music, and hang out with friends. In her free time, she enjoys watching movies, and occasionally going shopping! Kris loves chocolate-covered strawberries and huskies. She joined Wilfrid Laurier's Her Campus in the Fall 2020 Semester to pursue her passion for writing.
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