My First Job

My first job was until 2011 also the one where I had been for the longest. I went for several interviews with various shops over the summer between 5th and 6th year - Sainsbury's knocked me back and my first interview with The Link was also knocked back, but then I had a second interview and I was hired as a backroom staff member; essentially, I earned a lot less and no commission compared to the sales colleagues, which was fine.

Oh yeah, remember The Link? No? Well they used to sell mobile phones! I loved it. Turns out, there is no adverts on Youtube, which probably means that it never existed., eh?

Working in the shop chronicled some of my favourite times; it was the first time I had a drink, went to a club on expenses, worked night shift, and essentially had the most fun. It is probably the most fun I've ever had - I still have two of my closest friends from those days.

Also, in the end I started to make money! After earning £165 a month I later ended up earning a lot more thanks to commission and various other incentives that looking back I actually feel bad about exploiting. A lot of my friends are surprised when they find that I used to sell phones and when I think about it so am I - I have never been ruthless enough to shove shit phones at people who didn't want them or need them.

Oh, I can't talk about The Link without mentioning my assistant managers. I only had two main managers during my time there but an almost endless stream of assistant managers. Some of which were cool but a few... were infamous. I can't name them here for fear of slander or them finding it (the internet is less anonymous than it used to be) but for the few that do know, being called bingo was one major episode.

My favourite story from the Link days though starts with a damaged phone. A customer came in with a Motorola V220 that wasn't working. Normal procedure would have us go down stairs and check the phone to make sure they weren't trying to send something back that was not failed. We used to had out phones as most customer's phones had to go back to our repair team to get diagnosed. So, I go down stairs and find my manager mopping the floor. I had this habit of throwing phones up and down in my hand, probably a nervous tick. But anyway, but I was standing talking to my manager about the customer's situation. I remember a bit about this, but I think it was because the time between them buying it and the time for quick returns was basically up the day before. As we chatted, I threw the phone up and missed it, and it fell straight into a bucket of soapy water.

I actually had doubled over in laughter, with my manager falling over wiping tears from his face. We had to compose ourselves quickly, and I plain faced took a brand new phone to the customer and swapped it all out. So for them, it was amazing customer service - for me, it was a major moment of fun.

So yeah, loved working there and was very sad to leave. But I had to.

Now, if you want to read more funny stories, have a look at my Rock Steady series, the reason I started blogging.