It was the month of May in the late ’90s when I had first expressed my desire to my father of doing a summer job for a month or two. I had just given my SSC exams and I thought that it would be a great ride especially if I get in a company through my father’s reference.
My father was a hugely respected man as well as had strong business connections. At first, he did not take me seriously, however, upon my insistence he said…” I will see what I can do”.
On Sunday, he announced that I need to start going to an office based in Fort market near CST from Monday. I was on cloud 9 not only to learn that I was soon to start work but also the heavenliest fact that I would be working in South Mumbai.
I was in deep love (and I continue to be) with South Mumbai as my father used to take me to his office during my earlier vacation days.
We used to have GREAT FUN!!!! Throughout the day.
Take the local train, get a privilege to stand near the window,
Get down at Churchgate station…wow!!!
Have a thick mango milkshake at the famous KhauGalli.
Reach his office, Get a PC for self to play games, Call up friends from his cabin.
Visit places like Flora Fountain, Gateway &Colaba.
Watch Jackie Chan’s movie at Regal cinema, Shop at the fashion street.
And of course….Lunch at a Chinese restaurant. So, you can imagine…it was Jingle All the way!!!
However, now that I started working, the picture was completely different.
I was given a second class railway pass to travel, expected to walk through the oval maidan to reach Fort instead of hiring a taxi and best of all be on time… always.
The office was a very tiny space (10 x10) and that too with just one computer which the MD was using. Needless to say, there was no chance wherein I could use it to play games on it.
My job involved mainly to handle bank transactions such us filling up cheques, withdrawing cash ( I once handled 5 lakhs in cash)and tele co-ordination with the shipping companies’ agents.
Many a time, I would also travel a lot within Mumbai and up to NhavaShevaBunder to meet the clients too.
So as you may have analyzed by now, I was doing an office assistant job.
One day, when a client had walked in, I was also asked to offer him a glass of water as well as escort him to his car on his way back. This got me upset and that is when I spoke to my father.
I told him that I had thought that through your reference, I would be working in a swanky office, with a great cafeteria, have people reporting to me and also get a PC to myself to play games.
My Father smiled and said…” That is exactly what I am preparing you for”
In future, when you will work in a swanky office with a state-of-the-art cafeteria, you should not forget that the person reporting to you is also a human who comes to work by dangling himself in the train, does not have the luxury of hiring a taxi and also ends up doing all odd jobs which are actually very important.
Moreover, now that you are gaining this experience, you will always have an upper hand while dealing in bank transactions, offering superior customer service and managing the important assets of the company…
So friends… experience and hard work can never be discounted.