Solving Problems; Working With Many Different Kinds of People and How This Can Cause Issues

Though working at Trader Joe’s is quite a positive experience overall, there are observations that I have made about things that could be improved. The operational issues that occur are mostly due to the ways that people struggle to work with others at times. This is something that is a natural product of having many people of all different ages, backgrounds, and experience levels working together. There can at times be tensions between different Crew Members, especially as tensions over coronavirus also rise. There are age gaps between the younger members, and the older ones, and that is mainly something that I needed to navigate, treating my older coworkers as coworkers while still maintaining some level of respect towards me, as to not see me only as a young child. There are remedial strategies in place, such as being able to talk to a Mate, or Captain about the issue on hand in order to have them address it later. However there has recently been issues surrounding the civil unrest surrounding the Black Lives Matter protests and people discussing such topics at work. The company has come to the conclusion to try and limit such conversation, however if one wishes to wear a pin supporting the BLM movement they are freely able to do so. Overall, it has been interesting to see the ways that outside events effect the work relationships that workers have with one another. There is certainly a work persona that is presented to others, that when such deep political issues come into the workplace, can disrupt these personas. You are able to see more of people’s personalities and perspectives, and whether those align with yours or not. There is not much to be done by the company to remedy these issues, as they are already doing what they can by releasing statements about the issues (recognizing them), and providing mediation support when needed. Another issue that I see is that this job can be very labor intensive and there should be more breaks scheduled into the day, especially after certain tasks. For example, there are days when I am assigned to clean up the carts in the parking lot. Although it is nice to get outside, on the days where it is 85 degrees or hotter, those shifts can be brutal. This is not even mentioning those who are older than me who must do this physical labor. We are able to take microbreaks whenever we so choose but I believe it would be beneficial to give workers after those tough shifts a ten minute break or so before they go onto their next task.

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