Sunday, October 14, 2007

Pros and Cons of a Second Job

As I've mentioned before, I work a second job in a retail store. Some days I hate it, some days I only dislike it, some days I actually enjoy it. Since I love making pros and cons lists, I made one for my second job.

  • The pay is lousy. While I make above minimum wage, it still doesn't add up to that much at the end of the week.
  • There's temptation to buy. Ever want something really bad, but resist buying it so you can meet your financial goals? I walk by items I want every time I'm in the store.
  • Dealing with customers. Don't get me wrong, I love helping people pick out merchandise. Kind of like shopping without me actually spending money. But there are a few witchy customers that can really get to me.
  • Scheduling. If I need a day off, I have to ask for it 2 weeks in advance. Kills all spontaneity.
  • It takes up time. Not just a little time. I work at the second job 24 hours a week. I work 2 nights during the week, Saturdays and Sundays. All my housework, errands, and any social activities are planned around my hours at the store.
  • Employee discount. I get a neat 25% off everything in the store. I don’t buy a lot, but every now and then there are items I legitimately need (shower curtain liners, anyone?), so it’s nice to save some dough. Plus, about half of all gifts I’ve given this past year were from my store.
  • Access to the Deals. Every now and then, we mark some items WAY down. Whether it’s discontinued bedding or display glassware, we sell some things at unadvertised low prices. I’ve snagged replacement dishes for my sister and some sheets for my mom for a fraction of their actual cost. Not to mention I know what’s on sale before it’s on sale – even for Black Friday.
  • Friends. I’ve been working there for just over a year and have met a bunch of people. They help the time pass in the store and we socialize outside of work as well. Good people make everything better.
  • It keeps me busy. Not that I would sit around doing nothing otherwise, but working all the time has its advantages. I’m sure I would go out more and spend more money if I had the free time to do so. Working every day of the week naturally keeps that in check.
  • Pay down debt. This is the number one reason I have a second job. Even though the pay isn’t all that great, every little bit helps. The $650 I make working the second job in a month is $650 less on my credit card balance and $650 less that I am paying interest on. At the end of the day, it’s the paycheck that keeps me going.

At the end of the day, the pros still outweigh the cons. I'm pretty sure that once the credit card debt is gone, that will change. My number one reason for working a second job is to pay off the credit card debt, and I don't know if any other incentive will be able to overcome the pitfalls of the second job.


Green Panda said...

I wish you well on the credit card debt. Just don't get burned out by the second job.

JvW said...

That's the tricky part :)

Shawn Watson said...

I definitely understand your rationale for the second job. I wish more people were as responsible to clean up their debt. I think having a set stop date in mind helps with the motivation

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