Tag Archives: job

It’s not a job, it’s a career.

ImageA little over 6 weeks ago I became a Starbucks employee.  I am going through their RMT (Retail Management Training) program and I am loving every minute of it. So far, I have completed Barista, Shift Supervisor, and Assistant Manager training.  

My manager and I devised a schedule that would allow me to work on the floor with the partners majority of the time.  She encouraged me to ask questions, talk with the partners about their experiences with the company and customers. What do they love, is there anything they think we could improve on, etc.  I was able to create an environment that encouraged open conversation and welcomed suggestions between my fellow partners and myself.  

The ability to converse openly with one another is crucial to a productive, and positive environment. This style of management and education is one that I will bring with me wherever I go, and encourage others to do.  We learn so much from one another and are able to improve everyday operations by talking openly.  

Six weeks later

Six week later, I was launched as an Assistant Manger and placed in a new store. This week was my first week and it has been a “hit the ground with your feet running” time.  I love it.  Every day I enter the store I know that today I am going to learn something new, work with people who are truly amazing and love what I do.  The key here my friends is passion.  

When customers ask me what I plan to do with my life, or when do I finish school? I respond with a huge smile saying this is what I want to do, and that I will be pursing a graduate degree in a few years with the help of my company.  

Love what you do

I wanted to work for an amazing company who has a passion for it’s partners, customers and the communities that surround it, and I have been fortunate enough to find one.  When I look into the future I see myself still working for Starbucks.  I may not still be an assistant manager but I know that this is my career and my passion.  Why on earth would I let it go?

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What Color is Your Parachute??

Have you ever heard of this book? My boss suggested I read it, he read it over 20 years ago as well as my father.

During our amazing meeting he said the best way to learn about yourself is to do a self exploration. This book helped him figure out what exactly he wanted and lead him to the job he has now. He told me to read the book, take it seriously, and figure out what exactly I want to do. Then take what I learn and apply it to my current job.

He told me that I need to love what I do, so figure it out and then do it. Of course he meant figure it out and then apply it to what I do now. By applying it to my current job I will find a drive that is natural and not forced. The drive that everyone hopes to find when they begin their career. Few end up finding it and settle.

Do I really want to settle for something because it is comfortable and let my fear overcome by ambitions?

No. So don’t settle.

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Learning from the Instigator

I work a 9:30-6:00 job Monday through Friday and on Wednesdays and Thursdays I show up at my second job to work from 8-11.  My second job is working for a gym as a check in rep for the front desk.  I spend a portion of my time checking people in and running the register, and when it’s slow I spend my time reading.  I love to read, most of the books I read are fiction because I don’t think there is anything like getting lost in a book. 

During my 3-6 hours a week I read and talk with gym members.  Every night I find myself talking to at least one interesting character.  Last week one of the members I always talk with and share books with was talking about his job and how his company tries to control what their employees do.  They track the web usage and block most communication platforms (twitter, blogs, gmail, etc.).  Management is afraid that someone may leak confidential company information.  This particular gentleman is an instigator; he loves to make people question why they do something if he thinks they are wrong.  When the boss explained his reasoning behind providing employees with cell phones that don’t have text messaging a light bulb wend off in his head.

Boss: We don’t have text messaging to be an option in the plans because we don’t want anyone sending text messages out that may contain confidential information.

Instigator:  Well that just sounds stupid, what keeps them from taking out their own personal cell phone and using that?  Also who would be stupid enough to use a corporate cell phone to leak information when all calls and messages are being tracked? 

Boss: Silence

 As technology progresses and becomes more common why do some people try to fight it?  I understand that some companies need to protect themselves and their customers but there needs to be a line.  If you are that afraid that someone will leak the information then why did you hire them in the first place?  You should be able to trust your employees or at least trust the management staff you hire to find the right person.  I understand that there is always that one person who ruins everything, but should everyone be micromanaged because of that?

 *why do companies micromanage?

*Does blocking content really do anything

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Is Social Media the next Customer Service?

As we progress through this age of technology fads dissipate and trends turn into the everyday way of life. Current trends that have become our social norm are facebook and linkedin. The unlucky fad ended up being Myspace which in fact was one of the original Social Media known as first to market. They didn’t approach the social network like facebook making it exclusive then slowly lowering the walls, Myspace was for everyone; children, parents, marketers and sales people. Everyone had a reason to join; to socialize with friends, see what is going on in your grandchildren’s lives or sell a product.

Now Myspace is fading away and Facebook is now the ruler of the social networking phenomenon and linkedin follows close behind. These trend setters have progressed past second to market, past trial and error to a thriving business. As companies join the rest of the world in Web 2.0 they are integrating their marketing campaigns into the social networking market. They watch for trends, study their target market and begin to learn about who they sell too on a more personal level.

Consumers have been involved with social networking for a couple years now and it is becoming apart of our every day lives. I don’t exclude myself from these because what I am doing right now (blogging) is an example of adapting to change and rolling with it. Now that we have established our own personal identities via the internet we are starting to branch out. One method that has been slowly increasing is communicating with your favorite brands in some shape or form. We connect by simply liking their facebook page or writing a review on a website about a product or our recent experience. We are web 2.0.

Companies follow complaints, ideas, suggestions, and most of all our positive reviews. They track our moves and chart them. By allowing to make ourselves more transparent companies are able to learn more about us, what we like, what we want, our hopes, our goals, and even our geographic location. I am not saying they are pin pointing the location of your home but they know where in the world you are. We are marketing them by word of mouth, well in this case what we type and where we post. To make sure they maintain or improve their brands they connect with us. We are now hearing from these marketers through a tweet or facebook message and if we really push their buttons possibly through a personal response.

Social Media is becoming the next Customer Service. There is not question that it may take a little while, but it is the most direct contact companies can have with their consumers why not take full advantage of it?

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Is your friend the new Cover Letter?

I have been fortunate enough to attend a great college and meet amazing people. During my years in school, I like many others have found certain topics challenging; accounting, finance, and calculus. In a previous post I mentioned how grades determine if you get your resume looked at or an interview scheduled but with this post I will talk about the “New Resume.”

A person once told me, “Kelsey you will not get a job based on your resume, your grades aren’t good enough. You need to focus on what you have to offer and what you know, yourself.” At the time it felt like a blow to my stomach, my grades for my major averaged out to above a 3.5 but my math courses impacted my overall GPA severely therefore dropping it to a 2.9. Which in recent graduate terms means you have been “shunned”.

It later occurred to me that that piece of advice was actually great true. You can't rely on a piece of paper that you submit via email to get you an interview because there are thousands of people doing the same thing. It is like picking out your beach umbrella from all the others on the beach when your on the boardwalk. (It’s summer time and I know many can agree that when it’s a busy weekend at the shore, it’s not so easy finding where your umbrella is located by simply looking at the patterns). Luckily you see a familiar face or familiar object and now you know where to go. That familiar face or object is your connection.
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From a business stand point that connection means everything. It gets you to the right place by showing you a direct path. It is now about reaching out, connecting with your friends and family and asking for help. When you reach out to people you are not as close with it is known as networking. You have to put yourself out there, reach out to familiar faces or people you haven’t met. Create that introduction and be honest but not selfish. Remember our society is all about the give and take. Don’t be selfish and just look out for yourself keep and open mind and be there for others.

I know from experience that when you meet new people and they offer to help you in any way possible to get towards your dream job you feel a sense of relief. It can be difficult doing things on your own and when you get that little boost from someone else it helps a lot.

Now hold onto that feeling of relief, that feeling of everything is falling into place and use that next time you see someone looking for help. If you can do something, then don’t be afraid to offer your help.

Your friend, your peer, and your network are all your Cover Letters. They help you get that foot in the door, that scheduled interview and that personal interaction. Your resume is no longer what separates you from others it is merely your cover letter. Whom ever is interviewing you has an idea about the kind of person you are through your friend, your peer or your network. Your Resume is just a review of who you are, what you can do, and how you can help the company.
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The Price We Pay For the “Good Life”


Generations evolve and with each generation there is a shift in education. When my parents were my age college was not necessarily a norm. Compared to the percentage today college attendance was lower back then. Not many people had the option to further their education, therefore their education norm was finishing high school. For one of my parents the goal was to finish high school, get a job, move out and make a living for yourself. Where as the norm for the other was go to high school, get into a great university, graduate in four years, get a good job and make something of yourself. A lot has change over a few years, our though processes have progressed at a rate which not a lot of people can afford. When I entered high school there was no questioning that college was the next step. My mentality for college was the same as past generations for completing high school.

After four years of college, I have a degree in marketing and now have a full time job. The cost of education from my school is around a quarter of a million dollars for four years. The goal is to pay off college loans after graduation once you get a job. Over the years college debt has increased due to the cost of a college education increasing, while the job market has decreased due to econometric downturn. As you can tell this does cause a problem.

Throughout my four years at college, I have learned more than I thought possible. I understand business, philosophy, and the idea of thinking outside the box and approaching topics with an open mind. Despite the challenges that have arose throughout my four years I am proud of myself. But with this education and pride comes responsibilities, responsibilities that come every month once you get a job.

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Culture Shock…


This past week I traveled to Rome, Italy where I walked the streets, observed the culture and gained insight about the business industry (focusing on marketing). From my personal perspective, the way to make it is to learn the culture.  Immerse yourself or always be considered an outsider. Culture is an interesting thing; you can either adapt to it when the time comes or just observe from a distance.

Roaming the streets is the best way to get a feel for the culture of the city.  Going to the market and observing the sales that take place and noticing how when you have two vendors why a person picks one over the other.  It is all about relationships and creating that recognition with one another.

When walking the market there were two produce stands next to one another selling the same product at different prices.  The two produce sellers were shouting out their prices and what they had, one was sell for a lower price. An elderly woman walked up looked at both stands and noted who was working and instantly recognized one of the sellers. Guess which stand she chose?  Shopping at the market for produce and fresh fish everyday is not unusual, the food is fresh (in American termonolgy organic).  But having a relationship with the person selling the product influences our decision.  In this case the elderly woman chose the person she knew despite the price difference.  Note that in the States we go for the cheaper prices example Walmart’s everyday low price vs. the local produce seller, if Walmart is cheaper most likely you will buy there.

Relationships help us pick and choose what we want to buy, what we want to do, and who we want to see.  There aren’t billboards lining up on the street advertising price cuts or digital advertisements running on a building for a new car.  The goal is work to live not to live to work.  Money is just a possession not who you are, your family and your relationships created over the years are what helps define who you are. 

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