Everyday Heroes - Retail Staff
In the strange new normal in which we find ourselves, studying, socialising and the simple act of leaving the house has become very different.
For many, long commutes to school or work have become a short walk from the bed or down the hall to a makeshift desk. Our usual way of dressing might have also changed dramatically, in a world where our social interactions are played out on screen from the shoulders up.
For all of us in this time of lockdown, a trip to the shops has become something momentous to break up the week.
But what about those staffing the supermarkets, post offices, petrol stations and essential retail outlets we continue to rely on during social lockdown?
If the change of circumstances has been strange for those of us able to stay at home, what about those still putting on uniforms and travelling on eerily quiet bus or train journeys to work in shops now dotted by yellow tape and separated by plastic screens?
Throughout this time, retail staff continue their jobs providing us with the essential products we need, and doing it with courage and resilience.
Many retail staff across Ireland have come through Further Education and Training courses, and though it’s hard to imagine that any training might have prepared them for the current circumstances they find themselves working in, the skills and knowledge gained through Retail Skills and Retail Studies courses has equipped them to adapt to anything.
Working in busy, fast-faced jobs, retail staff are well prepared to deliver essential services and supplies in new and exceptional conditions, and to do so with a calming, welcoming smile.
For many customers who live alone, the short encounter with a cashier or retail assistants and managers has become even more important than in their pre-Covid 19 worlds. Even from behind face masks and plastic screens, retail staff are maintaining a sense of positive, calming normality in a very different time.
Regardless of the way the world tosses and turns, we still need bread and milk, or to be pointed in the right direction to find flour for our 147th batch of banana bread. The retail workers we turn to at these times are still there, happy to help, providing the practical assistance we need to see us through, often when we are at our most stressed or anxious.
As with many of our Essential Workers, their roles may have been undervalued in the past, but we doubt anyone could fail to appreciate the efforts of these Everyday Heroes now.
If you’ve been considering a career path in the retail sector, check out the wide range of courses available through Further Education and Training.
Head to fetchcourses.ie and search ‘retail’ to begin your journey.