A $7/hour Job and Its Lessons

How to Stand out on the saturated market place

Anna Simpson

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Photo by Franck V. on Unsplash

I used to stand under a scorching hot South Florida sun for about 7–8 hours a day. Yes, there was an umbrella, but it was still unbearable.

Being a hostess in a restaurant in Miami Beach was one of the toughest jobs I’ve ever had.

It wasn’t just physically and emotionally draining, I was constantly full of fear and worry.

There was so much pressure on me from the management and the entire stuff.

You see, my job wasn’t just meet and greet people that came to the restaurant. My job was to persuade the strolling tourists to dine in the restaurant.

The restaurant was located on Ocean Drive, right on the beach with a beautiful ocean view. The location was perfect and it was always busy with people.

The only problem was: there were about 50–60 other restaurants on that 1,3 miles long street. The competition was horrendous.

All those poor tourists were constantly bombarded by special offers at every step. By the time they reached the restaurant I worked at ( which was kind of in the middle of the street), they were quite annoyed at such aggressive advertising.

I did my very best, using all my charm, positive energy, and a beautiful smile. But there is so much you can do to get people’s attention within seconds.

The worst part was: I was making $7 an hour, which would make about $200 — $250 a week. For Miami, it was impossible to survive.

I didn’t last more than 2 months there.

What I learned from that experience is that the problem was not the competition. The problem was “being like everyone else”

That restaurant was just like everyone else: American/Italian cuisine, 2 for 1 drinks, dinner specials.

The management and marketing team didn’t do anything to make that restaurant stand out, by even simple tweaks.

I was blaming myself for doing a bad job, but the problem wasn’t me or my selling and communications skills.

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Anna Simpson

Helping people discover, articulate, and monetise their messages and stories, so they can get paid for who they are. www.anna-simpson.com/book