Picture of a tree standing against the breeze
Chris Campbell // FLICKR

As a Street Sense vendor I have many new and unexpected experiences when I’m selling the paper. I learn more about the public and our society every day and every time I sell a copy.

I’ve created meaningful relationships with my customers and a good working relationship with my colleague, another vendor who sells in the same area as me. I learned by his example to treat everyone around me with respect and to let rejection pass over me.

Sometimes people will give you strange looks, like they don’t know why I’m approaching them. Other times I might say “have a nice day,” only to have the person I greeted give me a nasty or aggressive look. That used to get to me. But now I let it go, and more than once people have come back stopped and come back to chat with me. Or they remember me the next time.

It’s feels good to slowly build those relationships with positive communication, a good attitude, and respect in our community. I’ve worked every kind of sales job you can think of: door-to-door, telemarketing, sidewalk vending… but this unique.

Some people don’t understand the paper either. This is a job, one that I’m grateful to get up and go to every day. So it is my goal to help all customers understand we are here to make a positive change in life for both ourselves and our world. Every time someone buys a paper it motivates and encourages me to take another step forward in life.