My 18 year old son is applying for a job at a restaurant near his college and has a tentative appointment to meet with the hiring manager this Sunday. While he has experience as a server from a few years ago, he has spent the past two summers as a lifeguard. On the surface, lifeguarding may not count towards wait staff experience but it does carry a number of valuable transferable skills such as leadership, communication, responsibility and tenacity.
As he goes off to apply to the restaurant this week-end, I wanted to remind him of a couple of job search tips. Here they are in no particular order.
1. See if the company has an on-line presence and read up on the company. If the company has a position description or a “Working with Us” tab, read the details.
2. Dress appropriately.
3. Bring the names and phone numbers of his previous supervisors and the dates of employment.
4. Bring the names and phone numbers of at least two references.
5. Bring his school schedule.
6. Go alone. If someone begs to come along, have them wait in the car.
7. Ask for the manager by name. “My name is ___. I’d like to speak with (name of hiring manager) please.”
8. Bring a pen.
9. Bring a calendar or use your phone’s scheduling feature.
10. Speak clearly and politely yet show your personality. Be prepared to answer questions about your past jobs.
If your child is ready to take on a part time position, please share these tips with them. There are a number of online sites that provide job descriptions of the various types of jobs that teens (or really anyone) may want to pursue. A good one is My Job Apps.