It is the day upon which the peak prom-shopping season typically begins at Prom-tastic, your average North American formal dress salon. As per usual, everything is white/beige/taupe and pristine, ready to receive the day’s incoming prom-goers-to-be. One member of staff has just turned on the sound system, which begins to play the most current – yet tired – pop hits.
The store’s manager, Angela, preps the sales consultants after reviewing the scheduled appointments for the day.
“Alright everyone, just remember, we’re helping these teens get ready for one of the top-three most special days of their lives. They take it seriously, so we take it seriously. There may be a lot of eye-rolling on their part, but not on yours. Please remember to make note of the number of meltdowns that occur per appointment, on whose behalf they occur, and what the cause was.”
At this reminder, the Prom-tastic staff collectively groans.
“This may seem tedious, but we’re hoping that one day we’ll be able to improve the success rate and tone of our consultations. And most importantly, remember that life gives you L-E-M-O-N-S ladies! Love it, Experience it, Match it, Own it, and Nothing else will be necessary, so Smile.”
Getting through a single prom season’s worth of appointments is always like running a marathon, if marathons gave everyone headaches, dark bags under their eyes, and the 70% likelihood of developing an ulcer. In short, being a sales consultant at a salon like Prom-tastic is one of the most stressful retail jobs a person could get, but someone has to do it. The pay is commissioned and fair for the most part, and the typical peak season lasts only three months, but it always requires a great deal of stamina and hopefully-stable mental health to even have a chance of making it through until things wind down in early June. In short, it is not a job for the faint-hearted.
Soon to come on SAY YES TO THE DRESS: “BUT IT’S MY PROM!” EDITION, the consultants meet their clients of the day – who discuss their prom plans, dates or lack thereof – and negotiate the dynamics of the entourages that accompany them.