1. Attending to customers.
2. General cleaning of the office.
3. Preparing invoice and keeping records.
4. Sorting and tagging of newly arrived laundries.
5. Inspecting the already washed laundries (I check for stains and tears on the customers clothes).
6. I ensure that the customers get their clothes at the stipulated time on the receipt.
We were five workers at the laundry, Mr Lawrence (General manager), Mr Prince and Mr Ricky (Pressing department), Mr Owolabi (washing department), and myself. They were all grown up men, and I was only eighteen. While working at the laundry, I developed a lot of skills particularly speaking skills, and majority of the customers do tell me some important things that could help change my life. During my leisure, I love listening to the radio presenters, whenever an entrepreneur was speaking, I do pen down some of the things they say, and I make my findings. I was literarily gathering information about the world of business while working as a receptionist.
After a month my first salary was cut short. I was paid 15,000(NGN) rather than the 25,000 we had agreed on during the interview. I was told I would get my balance later. Which did came but very late. I worked form 8am to 6pm or even till 7pm, that's if a customer brings laundries during my closing period, I had to wait behind to sort and tag so it could be processed overnight. Any clothes or laundries which I did not sort and tag wouldn't be processed and that would be delay the delivery date. The General manager likes me, he was my best tutor in the laundry, we spoke about different topics, politics, education, finance, economy, and lots more. I got to know the names of the laundry equipment and washing chemicals through him.
During my third month at Makleys laundry, my daily records was becoming low. We were no longer making profits like we used to, and some old customers were owing. It was my responsibility to call and check on each customer, particularly the debtors. So I began calling one after the other, then I called a woman, I can't remember her name, and she insulted me, my boss and everyone at the laundry firm. I felt bad, very bad because her debts were more than 50,000. She was on a monthly plan, and she kept on bringing laundries without paying her monthly dues. I told my boss about the incident and she instructed us not to deliver any of the lady's wears. Days later the lady paid all her debts and cane to get all her laundries. Her eyes were red, she was angry, I was mute, I allowed the general manager to calm her down but he couldn't convince her to stay. So we lost one of our old customers.
Few weeks later, something terrible hit us. The state government had sent us a mail saying the laundry firm should close down. The manager held a meeting with all the staff, he told us the firm was owing taxes, he said it's a huge amount and he doesn't think our boss could pay up. He said he thinks the business would close down sooner than expected so as to avoid being dragged to court.
Everything sounded like gibberish to me, the laundry firm has been operating for more than five years at the same location. And they didn't have issues like this. It seems someone has blackmailed us. Someone had reported to the state government. The following week everyone was asked to leave the laundry firm. We were all sacked but we were given half payment of our salaries. The incident was a saddening one because majority of the workers became jobless and hopeless.
Haven gathered knowledge of business from the laundry firm, I decided to go into business. I and my friend ventured into interior design, we specialized on floor and wall design. We named our business fabstein designs. We started online, I created a facebook, instagram and twitter account for the business though the first few months were dry nothing came but with consistency we hit a jack pot.
After working tirelessly, designing homes, taking pictures and shirt videos at the same time, then we post to our social media pages. So the jackpot came, we were hired to train youths in three different cities in Cameroon on epoxy design. Epoxy design is a trending floor finishing design, and getting people to adopt it was always tricky. So we prepared for our trip to Cameroon.
To be continued....
Watch out for part 3!