In the small towns in the mid 90s, there was no concept or any opportunity of summer jobs; so I couldn’t do any summer job after my 10th or 12th exams. But deep in my heart I wanted to be independent, wanted to earn. My parents were middle-class parents supporting a big family, so I didn’t feel like asking them money for my “extravagant desires.” Also, I wanted to contribute monetarily.
I got a job offer in the final year of my M.Sc. As I had no desire to do Ph.D or didn’t have enough resources to study abroad, I grabbed the opportunity. It was my first step towards earning and being independent.
I remember riding in my two-wheeler for my first job and feeling like a “free bird.” I still remember the date, June 22, 1999. My first job was of a quality analyst in a small diagnostic firm and my salary was only 2000/- but for me it was the beginning of my “job life.”
I remember my two immediate bosses were females who for some reason never allocated “important” work to me and the other new entrants. That was the first encounter of mine with office politics. I saw how people were sweet on face and manipulative behind your back.
But why should I just list out the negatives? My first job gave immense confidence to me. It taught me to talk to people, face people, handle appreciation and criticism. I still remember how elated I was when I received my first paycheck. That was my first earning. I got gifts for my parents and siblings and I remember how happy and proud they were!
My mother being a mother took out a small amount from that little salary every month and saved it as she knew that I would spend each and every penny. I didn’t feel guilty buying that “little expensive” lipstick or dress, felt so happy buying gifts with my own money.
The firsts in life are always special. The first job was a learning experience, not just the job skills but also the facts of life, different people, bosses..