5 reasons why everyone needs to work as waiter, re...

5 reasons why everyone needs to work as waiter, receptionist, and cleaner

Today, while out and about, I heard a man talking to a receptionist about the position of an appliance that had been newly installed in his kitchen. He was moaning about the lack of space now left as the bulky thing took up a lot of room.

The receptionist said it was the only space they had and it couldn’t be moved. The man said why not move it to the other side. The receptionist explained if that happened, the cleaners wouldn’t be able to do their job.

He said:

They’re just cleaners. That’s their problem.

before smiling at me as if I was going to agree with his quick wit and HILARIOUS take on the situation. The receptionist said it just wasn’t possible. He again said he didn’t care if it made their job harder, after all,

They are paid pennies because their job isn’t the most taxing of careers


I stood there aghast at the arrogance of this man. Literally speechless (I wasn’t speaking but if I HAD been speaking I’d have had to be speechless). He had to be in his late forties. He was wrinkled from years spent sunning himself on the continent. How do I know he spent years on the continent? Because his wife loves golf even though she’s not very good at it, she tries bless her, and as such demands a four week sojourn in Spain every six months.

He has no idea morons like him make the world a bad place, and again tried to impress(!!!) to astonished receptionist with tales of how his five bed place in Berkshire (what a hunt) needs new carpets fitting, and can she source the same supplier to the Middletons as it would keep ‘her indoors’ happy.

As someone who’s worked as a receptionist, barisa, and a cleaner, there was no way I was going to agree with a badly-tanned man who had such disrespect for the people who work these jobs. If it was up to me you’d be made to spend a week as a cleaner, a week as a waiter, and a week as a receptionist before you could finish school

So, why is a job as a cleaner, receptionist, or waitress something everyone needs to experience?

why everyone should be a cleaner, waiter or receptionist

1. You’d learn to respect people

Being a cleaner, waiter, or receptionist – to some – isn’t considered a real job. Can you believe that? Working shifts on your feet the entire day isn’t considered a real job. Not. A. Real. Job. Let it sink in that a few people actually have this mindset, and until they’ve actually worked in one of those jobs, they’ll never change that opinion. Because all cleaners are as invisible as the wind or indeed unicorns.

2. There’s nothing more humbling than having to clean someone else’s toilet

Skid marks and all.

3. Using charm or sophistication doesn’t mean a damn thing

Unlike a role in sales, marketing, or PR, when your entire job is to wash mugs in a coffee shop, it doesn’t matter how much you can sweet-talk anyone. Your job requires you to turn up, and work. Nothing more, nothing less, and no cutting corners.

4. You’d appreciate the work that goes on behind the scenes

Such as the effort put into the seemingly effortless task of being greeted as you walk in the office every morning, not knowing the receptionist has been up at 5am to get into the office for 7:30 to make sure she could greet you with a cheerful smile.

5. The entire world would change

People wouldn’t scream at a receptionist when THEY THEMSELVES forget their access card at home and just so happen to work in a bank and therefore have to wait in a queue of visitors and others who have forgotten their passes to be security checked and issued a temp pass. People wouldn’t make fun of servers when they accidentally smash a glass or get an order wrong. Houses wouldn’t be designed in glass EVER or with crevices only a small robotic cockroach with an e-cloth tied to each tiny foot could reach.

The world would change if everyone was made to work in the service industry at least once. I guarantee it.

  • Great post! I have worked as a waitress and a bartender in the past, and I hated the way people treated me! I was asked SO many times ‘so what else do you do?’ or ‘What do you want to do in the future?’ like waitressing couldn’t possibly be what I wanted to do with my life (it wasn’t, but that’s not the point- If I want to be a waiter my whole damn life that’s nobody business) People can be really patronising and rude about it!

    I could always tell which customers had never worked in a service industry before by the way they speak to the waiters!!

    Emily xx

  • So many yesses – these jobs teach you respect and to value what you earn.

  • Yes, completely agree with this. While I can’t speak on being a cleaner or receptionist, my years in the hospitality game has certainly impacted on the way I work now, in business. You can spot people who have worked in hotels/restaurants/bars a mile away by the way they deal with people and situations – they’re the ones quietly getting the job done and paying attention to the little things other people tend to overlook.

  • Good god yes. Those kind of jobs teach you so much about life and the universe and the kind of person you absolutely don’t want to be. I completely agree that if more people experienced those kind of service jobs the world would be a brighter, shinier place. And maybe a cleaner one!

  • Siobhan Rothwell

    All the yes to this post. Having worked as a waitress, in a cinema, on box office, and at a theatre, I agree with this so much. Never again will I get annoyed by a waiter getting something muddled up, or get angry when I’m the one with wrong tickets, or leave rubbish lying on a cinema floor, because I know the hassle the public can give you for just doing your job


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