A warning- This is going to be a really honest account of my time in Florida. Without adding too many details and naming the company for which I worked, because you already know.
Yes, I did leave my job.
No, it was not an easy decision.
Yes, I am okay.
Yes, it was the right thing to do.
No, I don’t regret it. The only regret I honestly have is staying there and sticking it out for as long as I did.
Things aren’t what they were when I did my first internship back in 2015. Maybe I just got the short end of the stick and got stuck in a not so great location [which I did] or maybe it’s just like this everywhere now [which it seems like]. Management is horrible, there is little to no communication, and the standards of the company are just not up to where they used to be. But, maybe it wasn’t just me who got unlucky. I met people in many different aspects of the company, many different jobs, and no one seemed to be happy.
The company doesn’t care about their employees. If you miss four days of work in a row no one even notices or contacts you to see if you are still breathing. They will force extend you so you are working from mid afternoon until strange hours into the early morning and you won’t know they did this until you show up for your shift. They will leave you in a freezer all day and make you complete tasks you aren’t comfortable completing. They will forget to give you your break so you just worked eight hours without water, the bathroom, or a chance to sit down. And quite frankly, if you have school work, tough luck because they don’t care. So much for being called a “college program”.
I just felt like I was looked down upon by everyone there, guests and coworkers included. There would be days at work where people literally said to me “Do you know how to do anything?” “Why do you always look like a dear in headlights?”. But if I asked those same people the best way to complete a task, they of course didn’t have the time to explain it.
Guests would literally be impressed that I spelled their name right. “Oh, she must’ve gone to university, she knows how to spell”, one guest said to his wife right in front of me after taking their order. Um, yeah. I have a college degree. I left work every day feeling mentally, emotionally, and physically defeated. I knew I was worth so much more than what this company was using me and abusing me for.
To my friends who are about to start their programs in the fall, I wish you the best of luck and may you get better locations and better management than I did. To my friends continuing their program right now, keep fighting to find and create the magic. And to everyone who tried to make my time there worthwhile- my roommates, Kenny, Emily, Ryan, my Thailand girls, Madison, Avery, the culinary crew, Nina, and my friends in the dish room, I sincerely thank you for all of the laughs and the smiles that you tried to bring to my life. (If I forgot anyone I am so sorry. Just know that each positive interaction I had kept me there for another minute longer and if it weren’t for that I wouldn’t have made it as far as I did) I’m sorry that I didn’t get to say goodbye to some of you but truth be told I didn’t know my last day would be my last.
I learned a lot this time around. How to stay calm, cool, and collected when people insult you right to your face, how to problem solve on the spot because you have no other choice but to do it yourself, how to be willing to do every single job and help other people out, how to communicate with people who don’t know how to communicate. And most importantly I learned that it’s true when they say you can’t go back again and that sometimes quitting something doesn’t mean you’re “giving up” it just means you are doing what is best for you.
Just as a side note- If you have questions for me, please feel free to ask me privately before making your own assumptions.