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Haleth's avatar

How long should I stay at this job?

Asked by Haleth (19566points) November 11th, 2013

My job right now is a retail manager/ wine buyer. The work is challenging and engaging, and I want to build a career in the wine industry. I was hired to work Tuesday- Saturday, nights, which is pretty normal for retail management.

Six months in I got stuck with a six-day work week. The local liquor laws changed so that we could be open on Sundays, and I ended up with the Sunday shift. The staff is tiny, and the other manager also works six days, so there’s nobody else right now who can do it. (We have two part-timers who are college students, and one full-time employee who doesn’t speak much English. Still, I’m working on training.)

I’ve been here a year and a half. There’s a HUGE development being built near us, which will be done in a year. Once it’s finished, we’re expecting a big influx of customers. My boss says he’ll consider creating a 3rd key position once business picks up in a year.

I dropped out of college and worked all sorts of crappy customer service jobs before ending up here. This is the first position of real responsibility I’ve had in the wine business. It’s important for me to do well here because it will be the cornerstone of my resumé for the next few years.

A lot of people in my position go on to work for wholesalers or importers, where they build great careers. It seems like a great next step for me. You don’t need a college degree, just wine knowledge and several years of experience.

My original plan was to stay here several years and then look for a job like that. But the six-day week is really messing up my quality of life. It would be ok if one of those days were a weekend, or if I worked days sometimes, because then I could at least see friends and family. And I don’t actually know if I can go back to a five-day work week in a year.

OTOH, professional wine jobs are hard to find. Most of my previous jobs have only been for a year or two. If I leave now it will look like I’m job hopping, and I’ll probably have to make a lateral move instead of the step forward I’m hoping for.

So, what should I do? I’ve been on the lookout for jobs for the last few months, but I’m also trying to make the best of the current one. Should I tough it out for at least another year? (I could, and I don’t mind paying my dues and working hard to get ahead. But this seems a little beyond that.) If not, how soon can I leave without hurting my career chances?

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8 Answers

picante's avatar

If I’ve interpreted your text correctly, you’re appreciative of the position and its potential except for the extended work week. Work-life balance is incredibly important; so only you can determine which carries the greater weight at this point in time.

Is there any chance you could discuss with the boss the possibility of bringing on another part-timer to allow you more time off, explaining to him/her how deeply you value your long-term experience there?

In brief, I’d say wait it out and try your hand at crafting a better schedule for yourself. Good luck!

JLeslie's avatar

The six days and every Sunday is completely unreasonable in my opinion. Only you know how long you can keep doing it for, but it sounds like you are getting towards the end of putting up with it.

Will you give up some money to hire a third key holder? Maybe if you pose that to your boss he will consider it. I assume you work for a salary and don’t get overtime pay.

I was thrilled to find part time management jobs, they are so rare. I bet there is someone out there who would want the job. You could only schedule them when there is also a knowledgable sales person. That way it does not have to be someone who comes with strong experience in the wine business, they just need retail management experience and have references that they are trustworthy.

I would look for another job if your boss won’t entertain some sort of a solution. Working you 6 days a week unending demonstrates he doesn’t care how hard he works his employees. Maybe he can work all those hours, but most people can’t. I am not even talking about wanting to have time to smell the flowers, I mean physically and eventually mentally I find it to be abusive.

CWOTUS's avatar

Assuming you have no special employment contract with your employer that includes a “non-compete” clause, why not consider starting your own business in the industry?

Before she started her food cart business in Wisconsin three-and-a-half years ago, my daughter was working as an assistant manager at a pub near Madison. She talked with her boss there and let him know that she was going to be getting into her food cart “as much as possible” in the spring of 2010. That was pretty much the equivalent of giving her notice there, but because of the good relationships that she had built up, they told her she could always come back if her startup faltered or failed, and in fact she rented their kitchen space (since the food cart rules in Madison require food preparation in a “commercial or equivalent kitchen” which she didn’t yet have) in their off hours for her cart business.

Maybe your own plans haven’t included “your own business”, but if I were starting over again and had the energy that you obviously have, I would think of nothing else. So start making plans in that direction, maintain your excellent reputation where you are – including not working your business while he’s paying you to work his! – and use your current job as a springboard to a career that you control totally.

JamesHarrison's avatar

I think you should have to wait there & learn new things. Its better to learn there anything as compare to change your job.

Jonesn4burgers's avatar

Getting experience from more than one source is a good thing. You have done that. What you need to do now is build stability. Now is the time for that. If you feel that staying will evolve, improve, go forward, then you should stick with that direction. Six day weeks are hard sometimes, but it sounds like it will become wort the doing.
I worked a factory job with ten hour shifts and three day weekends. I was in the Navy, where I put in five weeks without a day off, fourteen hour days, I got one day off and went right in to three more weeks no days off. I did a 24 hour shift once with one thirty minute break for lunch, no other breaks. All this was doing a highly physical job. (I was ONE TOUGH CHICK!) There are all sorts of scenarios out there. All have their plusses and minuses. The plusses are getting increasingly difficult to find. Develope loyalty and trust between you and your employer. That will go a long way. Try this to see if it will help. Open a special bank account. Call it your sixth day treasure. Every week, deposite $20. into it. When you get to work five day weeks again, that account should have enough in it to get a special reward for yourself. As the account grows, you might find yourself feeling so greedy, you won’t care about that sixth day anymore. You’ll just be excited about watching that balance grow.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I’d say stick it out. Really. That’s how you end up being Somebody, because you’re willing to go above and beyond…....

mazingerz88's avatar

What a coincidence. Logged in to ask a question about staying in my job and saw this. What I can say is I got it worse than you. Been working part-time for two years hoping to get a full-time position but it’s not happening and my supposed superior is “insane”.

You know what you want and you are, for real, getting closer to getting it. It’s not gonna be forever anyway so I suggest hang on to it. If your friends and family are fine and will be fine while you prioritize this career move, that’s a great practical and logical choice.

LuckyGuy's avatar

So, @Haleth, what did you decide to do? How did it work out for you?
An update would be helpful. :-)

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