I was hired. I was elated. More than anything else, I was in disbelief. At 16, a multi-million dollar company believed enough in me to pay a rather high wage in exchange for my value as a non-experienced worker.
Believe it or not, when I was hired in at Taco Bell in 2009 that was my outlook. Atypical among fast food workers, it was my belief that Taco Bell was over-paying me (at $6.55 an hour) to work for them, so I tried my damnedest not to disappoint.
Three years later, I moved on from my first job and into the serving industry. I learned quickly that Applebee’s and IHOP allowed me to use their brand. It was my job to make my own money. Any good server will tell you that only an entrepreneurial approach will drive excellent service. Building “regulars” and getting that always appreciated “massive” tip or two each night requires the right outlook if one desires continuity. You must understand every table is a new employer, another job opportunity.
Now, after years of the food and service industry, I’ve been given my greatest opportunity and responsibility yet, as a Business Development Consultant for the quickly growing Advantage Media Group. I lack a degree of any kind, even though the company requires a degree of its applicants. I’m permitted this opportunity for a few reasons.
I’m a participant in Praxis, a program with a bold vision that shares the conviction that a degree is not always necessary to be a competing professional. Praxis has partnered me with AMG for 10 months. After scrutinizing interviews and applications, the Advantage CEO determined that, degree or not, I possess the “Maturity, intelligence and professionalism,” to be an employee. I am now a part of his ambitious vision to grow the company in excess of one hundred percent this year.
I’m flattered that someone who has invested their life, capital, and vision into a business has confidence enough to pay me for the value they believe I’ll add to the company. I believe it is a direct result of my attitude, behavior, and approach to life. I accept that there is no task beneath or above me. From scrubbing bathrooms, assembling tacos, getting six extra ranch dressings (each on different trips for one table), to prospecting CEOs and entrepreneurs for a growing business, it’s my pleasure and will continue to be.
Perhaps controversially, I don’t believe anyone is “stuck” in a job they hate. No one has a job that “under-pays” them. You are hired and paid for the perceived value you add to the business. If you think you’ll be hired for a job because you “need” it, or that you are entitled to a wage, you’re gonna have a bad time.
I always come back to the Ayn Rand quote, “There is no such thing as a lousy job, only lousy men who don’t care to do it.”