A typical day we were all putting out fires while understaffed and being constantly interrupted. You had to be able to switch gears quickly, cover for others in a pinch, and deal with the high turnover rate. There were some that came to work with the best intentions, but were not able to devote what was needed to this sort of work. While they moved on to less stressful jobs, those of us that stayed were definitely a team!
I learned early on to own your mistakes instead of trying to pass the buck. People tend to get over it a lot quicker with an "Oops! My mistake- let me fix that" than they will a reply-all finger pointing attempt at not letting the blame land on your lap. So taking ownership was a huge valuable lesson. I also learned not to take on the emotions of those who were upset or angry. I learned you have to be able to laugh to keep from crying some days! I learned how to not get sucked into drama.
The hardest part of the job was pulling the weight for those that weren't pulling nearly any of their own. But you did it because they didn't suffer from it, the consumers did. Just like any place, you got some good workers, then you had some that were there for a paycheck. (Those didn't last too long!)
The best part of the job was feeling like I had a purpose, was valued by others, and enjoying those I worked with.
Management (the ones who stayed, and the good ones) really made a difference in why I stayed as long as I did. They took a lot of grief from those that worked in the field assuming they didn't care, but in reality those in the field had no idea how tough it was for many of the Managers having to operate with one hand tied behind their back due to forces beyond their control.
All in all, I loved my time there, and have learned so much that I can now use to apply at my next job.