Climbing the store ladder, literally and figuratively

I’ve put two weeks in at the paint department.

I’m learning a lot at the store.

I have to be good at climbing the ladder.

For stocking, they keep big things up high. Early on, my boss told me to deal with garbage cans.

With wheels for easier toting.

With wheels for easier toting. We may even have purchased our’s at the store before I worked there.

The store sells a good variety, from humongous to very large to plenty big.

I had to take some down to restock the supply on the floor, and make sure those still up top were in safe order. You know, so a stack will not topple over onto a customer’s noggin’.

Some things up high can be brought up and down with the store’s big ladders. Others should be maneuvered using the automated lift. While I was working part-time at register in front end, I made sure I became licensed to work on the automated lift because front end keeps its beverages stored on a top rack. My boss in paint was thrilled that I was certified for these ups and downs. And after one trip on the ladder, I knew the garbage pails were in the category that needed the automated lift. And yet I still managed a nice welt on one arm from hauling a stack over the restraining wire.

My second week, I also met what I’ll call the store’s scheduling ladder. I started with a shift that took me to closing time, noon to 9 p.m., and then up the figurative rungs I went, I told myself as I thought about it. The next day it was 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. And that was followed by several opening shifts, 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. I made it. The gradual sweep was better than an open-to-close or close-to-open, as my part-time at front end tells me, though I assume there are those back-to-backs in my paint future.

Do you have a regular work schedule, or does it jump around? Which do you prefer, a steady schedule, or a variety of work hours? What are your favorite hours to work, and why?

43 thoughts on “Climbing the store ladder, literally and figuratively

    • When I was up on it yesterday, Scott, to tape close the top of a broom box so it complied with top-stock safety code, I looked out over the expanse of the store and realized just how high I was. Some of the little boy in me came out!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I love my 10PM – 7AM Friday through Tuesday night schedule that I’ve had for 18 years now. And I get so much PTO from my long tenure that I can take a four day weekend every month…. if anyone other than me would call having Tuesday-Friday off any sort of a weekend!


  2. I like steady hours MBM. Though, that doesn’t mean not flexible. I don’t mind working over or starting early if needed either. ๐Ÿ™‚ I don’t like it when folks have to work super late, then get up early for the next shift. It’s not good for people. Who creates that stuff any way???


  3. Hello from sunny Puerto Rico, mi amigo! Stopping by to say hi and see what you are up to. I think it speaks to your character that no matter what job you are doing, you do it with integrity and while giving it your very best! That is very admirable, Mr. B. Good for you for paying your dues and climbing up that ladder (but please be careful with the metal type!) I have a little story I wrote about my trip and my mother on my blog you can find – to see what I am up to. I’ve got one more week in paradise and hopefully by the time I return (in April) Spring would have really sprung! ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚


  4. hard work, good workouts, good for you, mark. i’m sure you’ll feel it but your health will benefit. those are long shifts – as for my sched, i’ts pretty set, early morning until late afternoon and i’m happy with that. there have been times in my life when i had kids, school, work, more work and a little sleep. i so appreciate a more friendly schedule )


  5. I loved your post, Mark. A Day in the Life. The ladders must provide a real workout–something I could use a bit more of, for sure. Not sure which chain you’re working for, or even if it’s a chain, but one thing I notice about Home Depot, Loews, Orchard Supply Hardware (California chain) etc. is that the staff seems to be well-trained, not just in where to find things or how to use them but in how to deal with people as well. I’ve never ever met an impolite person in a hardware store. And there are so many other places in business and in life where you do. So every time I have to visit such a store, I’m secretly happy for the respite ๐Ÿ˜‰


    • Yes, I work in one of the above, Joe. And my managers, right to the top Store Manager, stress, every day, how the customer comes first, first, first. I like that atmosphere very much.


  6. You don’t have town-provided totes where you live? Here they’re mandatory to help alleviate rat problems (although it doesn’t seem to make any difference with my next-door neighbor, who prefers the rat-infested ghetto chic atmosphere).

    Be careful on those ladders!


  7. Mark you have the best attitude — wish I could hire you.

    My nominal hours are 9:30-6:30. But with Wi-Fi, we’re never off duty. I work evenings, weekends and vacations routinely. But I don’t do ladders!


  8. Oh wow, sounds like you’re getting a lot of exercise if nothing else. Be careful though. I work from 8:30 to 2:30…great mom hours. I don’t like working evenings though. I feel like you spend your whole day thinking about going to work and then when you come home the day is over. I’d rather have it done with and have some time to relax.


  9. WoooHooo! Certified on the lifts already – nicely done Mark. When I supervised in a warehouse, the more versatile an employee the more and better work they got. Personally I took every course offered by any employer. Bumps and bruises – yeah marks of valor , ha! used to be anyway – these days everyone makes a big deal over every nick and scrape. I don’t really disagree with that because sometimes employees will hide injuries that come back later but still some days I thought it was a bit overkill. I had a paper cut on one finger, got a band-aid and had to fill out a government Workers Compensation form. sigh. And of course, the form in the first aid kit has to be completed as well – indicating the removal of the band-aid. And, as a manager, I’ve suffered through Labor Canada audits and they bloody well check the number of band aids and cross reference the first aid kit form with the Workers Comp forms. Sigh.

    Anyway, shifts. Whenever I was new i’d take whatever shifts I could get partly to please the boss and partly to get training on each shift – many of which have different tasks. Even after I had been there for a while, i would do whatever the boss needed to make it easier for him/her. That said, with all else equal, I was a night person who naturally slept from 3am to 11am, so I would take shifts accordingly. As I have aged, it seems that i have become a morning person – needing less sleep and usually up at about 5 or 6 am.

    i hope all is going well at work Mark – I bet you are an excellent employee – smart and willing and easily trainable. Be safe.


  10. I work a 24-hour shift, have a day off, then two 8-hour shifts at a different job, then do it all over again to infinity. Or for at least 7 more years anyway…


  11. The nine-hour shifts sounds really long Mark. Especially 6am starts! Well done on making it through. As for me, 9:15 to 5:30 works pretty well, four days a week! Happy Easter ๐Ÿ’


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