Yours truly’s first ever job
..is one that lasts three days, makes your legs all aching and wobbly, throat all sore and dry, and freaking exhausted.
Seriously man. What a way to get experience for a (first) job.
But despite all that, it was fun and a great experience needless to say.
For the past three days, I had been working at the 2008 PIKOM PC Fair at the Permata Carpark exhibition hall that ran from 4-6th April. I was attached to PC Image, a name synonymous with PC fairs here in Kuching. Seriously, if you’ve been to PC fairs in Kuching, you’d know how PC Image dominates Kuching’s PC business scene.
This PC fair alone PC Image occupied over 30 booths scattered over two halls. And that’s easily the largest space occupied by any PC shop in Kuching.
Even customers get bored of seeing that logo at every corner. There’s one instance when a customer asked me what our shop is. On which I would proudly reply, ‘We’re PC Image, Wisma Saberkas, Sec-’ When they will interrupt, ‘Oh! Oh yes, second floor, I know! I bought my (insert PC peripheral here) there!’
After which, they would not fail to add, ‘Wah, PC Image again ar? You guys are everywhere lah.’
For three days, I was confined in this booth, trying to sell PC peripherals such as mice, keyboards, headsets, earphones and wireless mp3 players.
Its obviously not my first time in a PC fair. I’m always a loyal PC fair goer, but never before I’ve been to one as a salesperson.
Well that’s the fun part. =)
What makes working in a PC fair so interesting is that you meet all sorts of people. Its where you meet your English language lecturer and actually get to speak Mandarin to him/her/it. Its where you get to tease our favourite cute teacher Ms. Chong into buying a headset.
Its where you get to meet that hot chick working at your favourite chicken rice stall you frequent. Its where you meet long lost primary school friends. Its where you find out how true those gossips are about new couples when you actually get to see them walking together.
Seriously man, its like your life story walking past you. =D All in your circle of friends converging in one place.
And being a salesperson in a PC fair, a learnt a damn lot. I learnt that there are those who ask a ton of questions about something they’re interested in, only to walk away empty handed. I learnt that there are people who just blatantly ignore you promoting something they’re looking at, only to talk to you when they actually want to purchase something.
I learnt that there are those who just want their privacy browsing through the displays, without you babbling over how many aeons the warranty is valid for. I learnt that to turn a potential customer into a potential buyer, you must not let room for more than 20 seconds of silence.
In short, you just talk, talk, talk and talk.
But unfortunately, that is what I suck at. I am a total sucker in convincing people. By breaching that 20 second silence barrier, you’re widening the gap between you and your customer which dries up your customer’s initial interest. That is how most of my customers end up — walking away. =P
But of course, over the course of three days, I managed to sharpen my amateurish promoting skills to woo a few buyers. Such as buyers of these colourful mouses (mice?) you see above.
They come in five colours and were a huge hit among lovebirds strolling the booths. You get the occasional couple staring up in fascination at them, with the girl usually pestering/hinting heavily/ordering their other half for one.
Its that satisfaction of seeing the smiles on their faces when you entertain (read: promote) them on which colours they should choose etc. More so the satisfaction when you see them in delight when you hand them their newly purchased goods. =)
Last day of PC fair — clearing up stock.
Its also amazing to see the effort involved in organising a single PC fair. Every time I visit a PC fair I’d just browse through everything without much thought. In reality, its a nightmare when it comes to stock management. We’re talking about moving and transporting hundreds of boxes of stock and equipment here. Its mind boggling I tell you.
By the way, have you ever seen how the exhibition hall looks like on the last day?
PC fair — the aftermath.
Looks as if The Hulk’s been through here. =)
Well of course, a huge part of the fun in working in a PC fair is of course your colleagues. Yeah, they may be fearsome competitors in wooing customers in the race to get commissions but most of the time they’re there as great buddies.
I can’t imagine working in a PC fair without them. =P
All under one booth. The guys from left, me, Darren, Ah Yeong (our group leader) and Timothy. And the gals from left, Ah Ning and Wendy.
Gee, thanks guys. Without you, I’d earn so much more! No, seriously. =P Wahaha.