Saturday, June 06, 2009

an explanation

Yes, I got a job. And no, it's not a teaching job despite that degree I have. I wanted something way easier than teaching. I wanted a job that I could leave at the end of the day. I wanted something fun. I wasn't sure what I wanted to do exactly. I wasn't really looking quite yet, but after inquiring about positions at Panera Bread they wanted to hire me on the spot. I figured they saw someone who wasn't a teenager and that was probably pretty rare. I decided I could try it out and see what I thought. I honestly didn't know what to expect. The last real job I had was working at a preschool in 1995. What do I think? I LOVE it. Currently I'm just an associate. All that means is that I work the cash register, help customers in the bakery, and walk the dining room. I do not make sandwiches, salads or any of the other food Panera Bread serves. I am completely customer service. I am good at customer service. I remember names and faces easily. And not to build myself up, but the customers love me. I talk to them. I ask them questions. I remember. Totally right up my personality alley.

A couple of weeks ago my general manager asked me to take a walk with her. I hadn't done anything wrong so I knew I wasn't in trouble. She said she wanted to know if I was interested in the catering coordinator position. It's a management position with benefits. The current catering coordinator is heading to school in the fall so they were looking for someone who could replace her. I told her that it sounded great but that I needed to talk to Brian first. We talked and decided it would be a good thing. On Monday I start training for that position. Basically all the catering our store does would go through me. I will learn food prep for individuals and for a group. I will be the person taking the orders and delivering them. I'm looking forward to it! I will be losing some of my face time with the regular customers, but I will be gaining a whole new set of clientele.

But the best part of all...I don't have to wear a hat or tuck in my shirt. Ah...


Jason, as himself said...

Wow! That's cool. Good for you! You'll have to keep us posted.

Joy said...

That's great Natalie. I know you will do great.
I love P.B.


Joe @ IrrationalDad said...

That's great... Nothing like getting promoted in less than 3 months! Congratulations.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations! Sounds like a lot of fun. I've been working at home for so long now.....it has it's benefits, I know, but I really miss the interaction with other people.

Enjoy every minute of this : )

Amy said...

Sounds like fun! It's awesome that you got promoted so quickly- does that mean you won't have to work such early mornings? I'm glad to hear you're enjoying it!

Oh, and I passed the Panera in the Woodlands today and thought of you! I wanted to go in for a cinnamon crunch bagel, but the parking there is disastrous.

Amazing Greis said...

Congrats again! So happy for you and know that you'll do GREAT in this new position!!!

Mamadallama said...

Wow! So fast! In my last position I remember trying to get it through the younger people's heads that they will not be promoted if they can't/won't do well in the job they currently hold (including being on time). Their excuses were many, but often included the phrase 'too boring.' And you just proved my point.

I know what you mean about getting a job you can leave at day's end. Walk out the door and leave it all behind until the next time you walk in the door. I'm sure you'll love the new catering position, too. It certainly sounds like fun. Enjoy!

Sra said...

Catering is a great business to get into. Have fun!

Unknown said...

That is so awesome! i LOVE panera

SP said...

Congratulations on your new job! There is something well and truly awesome about a job that you can enjoy but leave at the "office" when you are done.

C.J. Koster said...

Congrats on the new gig!

Domestic Goddess said...

Good for you! I will be looking also, in the fall.

I think it would be a great job! And, I LOVE PANERA!!!

Natalie said...

jason - thanks! i'm sure i'll have much to say!

joy - it is yummy. at least it won't be hard to sell!

joe - i know. it was the 4th day of my 4th week when they told me about it. crazy!

glummum - thanks! i had no idea i needed the people interaction as much as i did! i am so glad i got a job!

amy - nope...still 7am, but i guess that's better than 6am! i'm sure there will be some early days though. the cinnamon crunch is my favorite of the sweet bagels!

amazing greis - thanks!

mamadallama - thanks bunches! my daughter is going to start working there as well. hopefully she will be a pleasant teenager. if not i'll know!

sra - i think it will be fun!

georgie - it is so yummy! the new summer corn chowder...to die for!

sp - thanks! i totally agree! and no noses to wipe...that just makes it for me!

cj - thanks!

domestic goddess - it is fun. i know that it doesn't take much skill to do this job, but i don't care. i love it!

Anonymous said...

OK, I am totally going to beg my parents to go to Panera Bread. I haven't actually ever been there, can you believe it? We are definitely going.

Amy @ Dear Mazzy said...

Oh dear, I would be SO fat if I worked there. I'm sure they are thrilled to have you & it sounds like fun. I don't think I could do the early mornings, though. :-)

Lisa said...

You'd be great in either position - up front or behind the scenes. At your next promotion, you should look into the international department and opening up chains in, oh, I don't know...places where you know foreigners who miss cinnamon crunch bagels.

~m said...

How fun! And no pre-schoolers, at least not ones you have to take care of! Woohoo! :)

Natalie said...

supersmartkooger - i know! i can't believe you guys haven't been in yet! erica started work today. come see us!

amy - i must say i have eaten my share of bagels. thankfully i am not craving one everyday like i was at first. most days i can pass it up now.

mike and lisa - thanks! i know what you mean about missing the bagels. they are yummy!

~m - i must admit that i totally talk to the preschoolers. they love me! it's in my blood i guess.

the planet of janet said...


you go, miss panera!

Natalie said...

janet - thanks! so far i am loving it!

Anonymous said...

I'm the Catering Coordinator for my store in PA, we just had a BIG meeting at the Corporate Building in Warren, OH.

I am curious to know how much you get paid, we have a "raise freeze" at the moment and several shift managers have told me to ask for a raise reguardless.

Honestly, I would think given a promotion, which I hate to say it Via Catering is a BIG BIG BIG part of the store and how it does in sales, yet I get paid JACK CRAP(50 cents above min. wage). Total joke, I even told my GM whom LOVES me she said after I asked her I hope to move up further on the chain, she replied "it's a possibility but you have to show our DM and Corporate you are 'Covelli Material'".

In case no one hasn't noticed, Panera Stores have about 90% female staff. Doesn't seem like EOE to me!