Tuesday, February 17, 2009

My first job was at Hooters

Do you remember your first job? Do you remember how you got it? I was asking myself these questions today. Reminiscing about my first job (let me clarify, my father was a small business owner so I was working for him sans pay at the age of 6) I’m talking about when I cut the cord & sought work outside the family punching in & actually earning a check for my time. Here’s my journey & what I learned.
The Process: I spent the better part of my afternoons riding through Louisville in my friends civic (the job search was a package deal). Based on the above criteria we started with the usual suspects Kroger (teenage boys are supposed to stock shelves right?) Books-a-Million (teenage boys are supposed to stock shelves right?) Target (teenage boys are supposed to stock shelves right?) We were focusing on jobs we thought we were qualified for & that’s what you are supposed to do at 14 be the stock boy. We were pigeonholed in this one function this one menial task that all 14 year olds are supposed to do.

Well one Thursday as we left the Books-a-Million parking lot I had an epiphany, “Why not Hooters” I shouted. This startled my friend who was in no mood; he was on a serious job search. So I grabbed the steering wheel & forced him into the Hooters parking lot. We didn’t have a plan for Hooters we had a plan for stocking shelves. Never the less we just went with it. I walked through the door & asked to speak to the manager. After a few minutes of talking it turned out that they just happened to have two openings in the kitchen & we had just filled them. Holy $%*! we were going to work with Hooters girls.

So what did I learn from this process:
There is not one position you are supposed to do: We were so focused on what we thought we were supposed to do that we lost focus on what we could do.

Take a chance: What’s the worst that’s could happen; we get shut down at Hooters. Yep that’s about it that was the worst that could happen. However the potential upside was well worth the potential rejection.

Take action: Sometimes you just have to act, even if you don’t have a well-crafted plan. You take the chance & act on it.

FYI my first assignment at Hooters was to shuck oysters at the Derby Bikini Contest & it beat the hell out of stocking shelves.

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