GUEST COMMENTARY: My first job was working in fast food
August 6, 2017 The First Job Series is provided by the Youth Employment Council of the Northwest Indiana Workforce Board. The Youth Employment Council continues to urge employers to take a chance on a young person by providing them ...   Read More »
The First Job Series is provided by the Youth Employment Council of the Northwest Indiana Workforce Board. The Youth Employment Council continues to urge employers to take a chance on a young person by providing them with a first-time work experience.
Dr. Michael P. Livovich is an educational consultant in Northwest Indiana.
Q: What was your first job?
Livovich: I flipped burgers and poured frosty mugs of root beer at the Portage A & W drive in. The year was 1967 and I made a whopping 90 cents an hour. I worked two days after school and the weekends.
Q: What did you do with your earnings?
Livovich: My goal was to buy my first car so I put most of it in the bank.
Q: What did you like about the job?
Livovich: I was proud to have been hired. I also liked cooking.
Q: What did you not like about the work?
Livovich: Cooking on a hot, summer day was grueling; plus, I was constantly getting grease burns. The first thing I did when I got home was to take a shower. I also had a boss who was constantly yelling at me.
Q: What did you learn from this first job?
Livovich: This job taught me that I did not like working in a hot kitchen in the summer, and that I felt more comfortable working in a place where I could provide customer service.
Q: What advice do you have for a young about to begin their first job?
Livovich: Dress and groom appropriately; arrive at least five minutes early and be ready to work; arrive earlier if you have questions about what is expected of you; do your job better each and every day; take no breaks unless they are prescribed; if you smoke, do not sneak away to smoke unless it is on your break; stop smoking, it’s expensive and not good for you;
never talk back to your employer. If your boss speaks to you, maintain eye contact; ask questions if you are unclear about what has been said. If you work in a fast food restaurant, never take food from your employer if a meal is not provided. Always pay for what you eat and ask for a receipt; never quit your job without giving proper notice. And before you leave, shake the hand of your boss and thank them for the opportunity to have worked for them.
Q: What advice do you have for employers that hire youth?
Livovich: A mistake some employers commit is expecting kids to know what to do and how they should behave in the workplace. Many simply do not know workplace expectations, so we have to teach them. All kids today are not taught at home the importance of a strong work ethic. In order to grow great employees, we have to do the teaching. If a bond of trust and respect is developed, the employee will always pay it forward. Maybe they will come back to you as a young adult and ask for more advice and help. This brings great honor to the employer.
Valparaiso School Corporation is a READY NWI Education Team member.
View article in The Northwest Indiana Times.
© Copyright 2017, The Northwest Indiana Times
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