Mr. Noodle

Mr. Noodle
Mr. Noodle

Monday, August 26, 2013

My time running a night club comes to an end

I have been managing a night club for the past five months, and my original arrangement with the owner was that I would do this for the summer and then decide from there. I decided on August 16 that I had about six weeks left in me and then I need to be doing something else.

This has definitely been one of my more interesting jobs. I had a lot of really solid management skills from past experience:
- in my younger days I received management training when I was working in fast food
- when my mum had a cappuccino shop on northern Vancouver Island and had no previous food service experience, I was able to help her with that side of things
- at the hospital I worked at I took what was originally a chaotic environment and managed to streamline processes and make things efficient
- I managed to get my Master's project completed and thesis written
- I led an extra-curricular club when I was in university that met every two weeks and put together one or two events every semester that were much like putting together a theatrical play

My current job has allowed me to use all my skills in managing data, logistics, events, money, and people. Turns out, I love managing data. I keep stats on just about everything. Logistics are fun because I am challenged to envision what things we will need, from more seating, to who will be my sound guy when my regular sound guy is performing and my back up sound guy is in another country. I have *always* loved planning events, anyone who knows me knows I love to throw parties. Managing money (so much as I have responsibility for) in this case is really quite easy, but I have particularly paid attention to what kinds of bands will bring in the cash - and if they don't, we don't book them again. But it has been managing people here that has brought me the most satisfaction. When I started it was just me and my sound guy. I have since been able to hire two more bartenders (one who has become my right hand, I rely heavily on her). I had a bouncer for a couple of months, then he got hired at a new restaurant, and I have since had to hire two more because we are getting so busy that we need crowd management. Then there is the managing of bands, customers, vendors, media, colleagues and other sundry people I deal with. I really enjoy that for the most part, even when I have to play the bouncer myself (which is a bit stressful, I admit). I have learned really a lot in this job and I definitely feel like my management muscles have been flexed.

But I can't sustain this pace. I'm working six days a week and three of those are late nights, which absolutely messes with my sleep schedule for the rest of the week, so I am finding that I am always tired. My weekends are also entirely taken over with work which is often the only time I would normally get to spend time with my husband, from whom I was separated for 20 months having had to wait for immigration, so I would like to have my weekends back too. Also I still have my student loan debt to consider, so I need to be paying that off as soon as I can so we can one day start thinking about buying property...

I am looking to return to health care research, academic administration or management. I have applied for everything I am interested in/qualified for at East Carolina University (about 30 miles from here) and so far have only heard back from one posting, who will be doing interviews in September. Fingers crossed I am in a new position in my field by the end of September, as my last day at the Red Room will be September 21st. If I can't find something in my field before then, I'll find another temporary job - a day job - until I do.

I must say I am very proud of what we have accomplished at the club in these past five months. I appreciate all my staff do and say so every day. We have really gelled as a family and it feels good to know that if something goes sideways on a crazy busy night, there are 20 people standing beside me who have my back. I hope my replacement finds enjoyment in this work as I have, but is more adaptable to the schedule than me - I'm nearing 40 and am ready for a regular schedule.

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