I’ve had a variety of jobs throughout my life, as I’m sure many people have as well. I know, I’m such a millennial. My first job was at McDonalds. I had just turned 15 and didn’t plan on getting a job, but I went with my mom to drop my brother off to complete the McDonald’s application and a short time later he came out with a uniform and a schedule. I figured I’d give it a try as well and ended the day as a McDonald’s employee with a starting pay rate of $5.15. My first few weeks were full of cleaning the lobby, including the bathrooms. My goal was to move up to the cashier position, with the hopes of one day being a part of the elite drive thru crew.
I quickly noticed that I spent more time in the lobby than anyone else. One day, when my boss had asked a few other co-workers to clean the restrooms and was ignored completely, she came to me. She apologized and said she felt bad continuing to ask me to do the grunt work, but I was the only one that actually did it when she asked and she knew it would get done. Yes, I did think about just doing a crappy job, but I’m also a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to what others think about me and my work ethics, so like the glutton for punishment I am, I actually took it as a compliment and cleaned harder. What is wrong with me?!
I stayed at McDonalds for three years, although I did try to quit at least 3 times. I think at least 2 of those times, I begged my mom to quit for me because I didn’t want to let anyone down. So my mom quit for me. #awkward.
Before my mom quit for me, I was promoted to cashier and then realized the trick to staying employed is making yourself the most valuable employee. Show up to work. Learn all the things. Be respectful. Do what you say you are going to do. Follow directions. Immediately. Stay until your work is complete. Offer to stay late. Have open availability. Help out wherever you can. Note. These behaviors could turn you into a future workaholic. But that’s something you can deal with later in life. Before I ended my employment at McDonalds, I spent many a night running the drive-thru as well as managing the grill area. I took a lot of pride in being able to handle a lot of responsibility on my own.
For about 6 months during my senior year of high school, I worked as a bank teller. A good friend of mine was getting a job because her mom worked there and offered to help me get a job too. I thought that was way more glamorous then McDonalds, so I submitted an application right away (and asked my mom to turn in my notice at my current job) and headed off to the world of banking. I tossed my McDonald’s uniform aside and filled my wardrobe with business suits and heels. Okay, I actually had one pair of black pants that I wore every day and flats, because heels were never going to happen. I really enjoyed the job, minus the fact that I suck at math and all things numbers. When my drawer kept coming up short, causing everyone to have to stay until the issue was found, I knew I wasn’t cut out to be a bank teller. The final straw was my drawer was short over $1000. Everyone knew it was just an input error, but we had to find it and because it was a closing shift, all employees had to wait until everyone was done to lock up and leave together in a group (safety in numbers people!). It took over an hour and I felt horrible. The next day I came in and gave my two week notice (on my own!) and hurried back to McDonald’s, the land of my people, who welcomed me back with open arms. I envisioned myself moving up the ranks, opening my own store, and living the life of luxury with my McDonalds money.
But then I decided to graduate high school, go to college, and pursue a different path. So I asked my mom to quit for me one more time as I headed off to embark on my new adventures.