My Bitter-sweet Banking Experience

Working in the bank can be hectic and fun too. I worked as a teller and Customer Service Officer for seven years, though as a Contract staff, that meant that my salary was meager and I was not entitled to some benefits (bonuses, allowances) and privileges like loans, abroad trainings, worst of all promotions, But what am I to do? I needed the job because then I was schooling part time, I had my family and sibling to support. Frankly, the banking job was better than most jobs around.

I reported to work every morning by 6.50 am, Monday to Friday, in order not to miss office prayers and sometimes morning meetings. I did my best to avoid coming to work late, to avoid been queried. Once I was given a query for coming late, I replied the mail shivering all over, I hated the experience.

There are other issues that made me sweat inside out even when the Air condition was blowing ice cold; it was having streams of Customers waiting impatiently to take or dump their money with you and there is no network. You are smiling sheepishly to the Customers (showing Customer empathy), peeping at your computer system to see if the Network is up and then pouring out endless apologies to the Customers. It does not end there, at that point we are expected to use our discretion to attend to some Customers we are familiar with their account transactions and pay them; backed by a Supervisors signature. It was so tiring.

I yearned for weekends, Public holidays because for me, It was a time I visited the Saloon or went to the grocery store and Market to buy home items, most importantly it was a time I enjoyed with my family and friends so much and I hated when I would have to attend trainings or Workshop which was Compulsory on these distinctive days.

As a banker I was seen as a very comfortable person and so annoyingly most friends and family members are endeared to bug me for one assistance or the other and sometimes when I try to be nice I ended up sharing almost all my salary, then I had friends who were teachers with large bank accounts because their family thinks that as teachers they were paid peanuts. What a humor!

SWEET/MEMORABLE EXPERIENCES
I remember many experiences in the midst of the bitter ones that made my years as a Banker worthwhile. I loved putting smiles on the faces of the customer coming to deposit or withdraw money from the bank; it earned the post of a Senior Teller and opened up opportunity for me to work in the Customer Service Department.

Without doubt, my banking job experience helped me to develop and practice good corporate ethics of Communication, Professionalism, dressing and association. These ethics have made me distinct, unique and acceptable wherever I find myself and especially in my Present job as a School teacher and a Micro Management Consultant and Trainer.

I loved the Salary consistency and timeliness; though it was not much but the Credit alerts were great comforts. The payment day involved transfers to various dependant accounts, settling some debts, buying specials (chicken and beef barbeque with drinks or other gift items) for my family. It was g-o-o-d, when no deduction resulting from shortages, punishment, contributions, or loan repayment was made to my account.

At present I enjoy my teaching and consulting jobs the most, because it gives me room to positively touch people’s lives during my class teaching or Management trainings. I enjoy my weekends and School holidays with leisure and peace.

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Euphemia Nkechi Nwodo (Mrs.) is a consultant with the Institute of Business Advisers in areas of business incorporation and management, student and teacher professionalism, Human Recourses planning and Management. She is also a freelance writer on topics related to business/career advice, literature genres, education and family management, which is published on her website and her social media. Euphemia, is an Associate member of the Institute of Business Advisers. She possesses a Post Graduate Diploma in Education from the Federal College of Education, Kano State. Euphemia is based in Kano State, Nigeria