Things I Learned From A Job I Wasn’t Interested In Doing

SURPRISE. I actually didn’t love my job as much as I pretended I did.

Yes. It’s true. I didn’t love my job.

(And that’s just proof social media isn’t always real life.)

I know that might seem like a complete shock to some people because I’ve definitely made it look like I really enjoyed my job. While there were definitely some perks of my job (I mean HELLO EVERYONE LOVES FREE PEOPLE), there was just an uneasy feeling that I couldn’t shake.

So, we might as well just jump right into it: I’ve officially moved on from my career at Free People, and recently began a new one at another women’s brand (which you know and love)! This was actually a long time coming, but I wanted to share a few lessons I learned over the last 15 months.

I realized where my passion actually was.

This was the main lesson I learned, and I learned it very early on. Although I was technically a Merchandiser, I wasn’t doing any merchandising. When I was at Perry Ellis, I was a true Merchandiser and very much enjoyed that aspect of the business. When I was hired at Free People, I knew the job would be a little different, but didn’t realize HOW different it actually was. Instead of focusing on product, their version of merchandising was focusing on numbers.

I quickly realized that product is where my true passion lies. I’m really not all that great with numbers, and at Free People I felt like I touched the product too late. There was no way to react to a trim I didn’t think would do well or a fit that didn’t really suit our wholesale accounts. This was just one of the main reasons why I knew I needed to begin my job search.

I needed a different environment.

I’m going to keep this as professional as I possibly can: The working environment was just NOT for me. There were definitely red flags that I should have paid more attention to when I was interviewing, but nonetheless, I put myself in this situation. Aside from not doing anything that I truly wanted to do, I was in an environment that turned me into an extremely negative person. I wasn’t excited to get up and go to work like I used to be. I was angry for not being able to make an impact on the company. Over time I realized my skills weren’t being utilized at all. I was an associate doing entry level work, and I knew I could be doing so much more for my career.

I knew I needed to get out of there as soon as I could.

I’m grateful for what I learned.

On the flip side, I’m very grateful that I had this opportunity to learn a different side of the business. As I was job searching, I noticed more and more companies were looking for candidates with both product and analytic experience. Although I wasn’t doing what I truly wanted to be doing, it definitely was very helpful to get 15 months of analytic experience under my belt. In my new role, it’s about 70% product based and 30% analytic based. This is actually perfect. It’s promising to know that now I can use my analytic skills to help suggest new opportunities for the business!

Overall, I’m thankful for 15 tough months because it lead me to this next chapter in my life. I’m excited to begin this step in the right direction of my career. Can’t wait for what’s coming next!

photos by allie provost

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