She’s worked in almost every section of Riverdale Woolworths, but now Barb Taylor has packed her bags.
Ms Taylor has retired from the store after 42 years of service.
Her dedication to the company was celebrated on Friday with a farewell morning tea, attended not only by the staff she’s worked alongside but her family.
The beginning of Ms Taylor’s career was not quite the typical job application.
“I’ll be truthful I worked at Coles for six years,” she said.
“I had my daughter and I wanted to work part time until she went to school. Coles wanted me full time and I couldn’t go back to full time so I walked across the road here and said to Graham Marr who was the manager at the time ‘do you have any part time work going at the moment?’, he said ‘you start tomorrow’ and that was it. I never really had an interview or anything, he just said ‘you start tomorrow’.”
I walked across the road here and said to Graham Marr who was the manager at the time ‘do you have any part time work going at the moment?’, He said: ‘you start tomorrow’...
Her time at Woolworths began in 1975 in parcel picking. But Ms Taylor said at this point she had almost done everything.
“I was casual and then I worked up to ruining the parcel picking, then I moved up to check outs. I’ve done the meat department, I’ve done fridge and freezer, I ran variety, I was in the bakery, I’ve been checkout supervisor. Then I became the staff trainer which was inducting all the staff, and it wasn’t just here it was Wellington when they opened their store, Delroy Park, Orana Mall and Riverdale,” she said.
“I’ve never worked in produce, or in the office but other than that I’ve pretty much done it all.”
Ms Taylor said her plan was only to work at the store until her daughter finished school. But she had her daughter finished school 25 years ago and it was only now the employee had decided to call it a day.
It was the friendships she had built with the other staff and the customers Ms Taylor said she would miss the most.
The retiree said she would be busy in the next couple of weeks because she had just moved house, but after that she would have to “have a think” about what she would do with her time.