- On a summer morning, Kaisu Talvinen puts on her white jacket and makes her way to her job where she gives visitors tours on the mysterious world of Bonk machines. The summer job as a museum guide has given me courage and made me more confident around people.
“My big sister saw an announcement on Facebook where they were looking for summer guides with language skills for the Bonk Centre. She tipped off Tuija, the person in charge of Bonk, that I had a strong command of English and might be interested in the position. We had a few calls back and forth, and I got the job. This is already my third summer here.
A Bonk guide’s work entails customer service and facility maintenance. We open and close the place, take in customers, collect entry fees and perform guided museum tours. At first, especially the guided tours made me a bit nervous. Of course, I had read the story for the tour and memorised it pretty well, but what made me nervous was how to fluently express it.
Nowadays, I have managed to commit all of it to memory. I have gained more confidence, and now I even have the courage to improvise a little while I’m doing the tour. I have formed a routine for the Finnish tours, but since there are fewer tours in English, they always make me slightly nervous.
I think that a good Bonk guide is kind, has solid language skills and knows the tour texts but isn’t afraid of minor slip-ups. If you dwell on your mistakes, that may affect the remainder of the tour and cause unnecessary stress. You should remember that the museum visitors are only people who make human errors just like you do, so there’s no need to take small mistakes too seriously. A competent guide will also get by with all sorts of people and handle social situations without being afraid of putting themselves out there.
Above all else, I’d say that the work has boosted my confidence. In the past, I used to be a bit shy and would get nervous in front of people. Nowadays, even school presentations aren’t nearly as nerve-wracking as they used to be.”
The article series showcases summer jobs in Uusikaupunki along with the people in these jobs.