This week, I decided I was going to learn something new. For no pressing reason, I shadowed a friend of mine who works as a bartender so that I could try to get an idea of the basics and how to make a few classic drinks.
I figured it would be good information to have if I ever wanted to get an evening job tending bar. Aside from learning what makes a martini “dirty” and the ingredients of Manhattan, I learned the importance of remembering a customer by name and creating an experience for them rather than just pouring a drink.
Young people tend to set their sights exclusively on the perfect internship or job that will impress their desired employer. And if you can make that happen, that’s awesome. You should strive for that.
Unfortunately, there’s lots of competition. *insert Dwight Schrute “We need a new plague” meme* If you put all your eggs in one basket and apply to only the internships in your exact niche, you might spend the summer doing nothing at all. And that’s perfectly okay, too. There’s no shame in returning home and working as a lifeguard or a line cook, as long as you take the lessons you learn and apply them to your future.
When I was 14-or-so, my first job was filling nail holes in new construction homes that my best friend’s dad built. My friend and I would spend hours rubbing putty into microscopic holes until our thumbs were raw. It sucked and we hated doing it, but I won’t forget what it taught me.
It taught me attention to detail. When I have a closing, and I do a final walk through of the home with my buyer, I notice every imperfection. I notice those unfilled nail holes, a chip in the paint, a scratch on the floor. I notice and I request perfection, making me better able to do my job and give my client the very best.
Working as a waitress has taught me great customer service. Working as a computer lab monitor taught me about many software programs. Working as an assistant coach taught me how to lead effectively. Working as a leasing agent taught me to overcome objections. Working as a tutor taught me how to train others. Working in a bridal store (for like, a month) taught me how to handle clients’ emotions. What do any of these jobs have to do with real estate? Nothing, really. But I can talk about each and every lesson I’ve taken away from these odd jobs and explain that I am able moldable, I possess a wide range of knowledge and I am not scared to try any new challenge.