I’ve been MIA from my little blog because my life has been pretty mundane lately…work, then home; home then back home. Because of my work schedule, I don’t get to do much socializing because I’m either at work when everyone else is off from work or vice verse; or when I do get free time I’m exhausted and still have to run errands, clean, send out resumes (and re-write the time-consuming cover letter for each position), etc. I’m somewhat boring with my life; a lot frustrated by the job search process which is, ‘it’s not what you know, but who you know’; and a little bit depressed by how mundane my day-to-day life has become.
I am currently still working in the retail business, which I love but don’t see a real future in because it seems that the “powers that be” will not allow me to promote to the corporate side of the industry based on my education and previous management experience; rather that I must climb through the ranks of retail, which I’m not willing to do. My only alternative is to go back to higher education, which I was completely burned out on and do not look forward to returning to. But, what other options do I have?
Working in this industry is a love/hate cycle for me. I love the job because it is so full of energy and fun and basically, I’m meeting new, interesting people every day. The downside is seeing the full effect of greed first hand in commissioned sales and knowing that some customers are going into debt for material things. But working in the industry (high-end retail) and seeing a perspective of life that I was never exposed to before, really has me pondering the question, how much do looks matter, really?
We all understand that we live in a superficial world and it would be extremely naive to say that looks don’t matter. And, to a certain extent, we all understand that being materialistic is wrong. However, I now understand, in a way that I never could before, just how much the “look of success” really does matter. People judge us not only by race and gender and make certain judgments, but putting those variables aside I am starting to believe that what matters most is how successful you are perceived to be, regardless of the aforementioned variables.
I was reading an article recently that spoke to this very issue. The article discussed how people in perceived “successful industries” must look the part in order to continue to gain clients and keep their business. One of the examples given was a high-end real estate broker renting luxury cars to transport his wealthy clients to home viewings. The justification was that you can’t gain or keep high-end clientele if you don’t look like you are having success in your field; i.e. the ability to buy expensive professional clothing, luxury cars, expensive brief cases, etc.
Working in this industry and talking to a lot of the customers about why they are shopping/buying certain items has really been eye-opening. Additionally, I see salespeople break their necks to high tale it to the customer who “looks like she has money to spend.”
What has been your experience in this regard? What are your observations?