Thank you for continuing to the second half of this blog!
When I decided that the fast food industry was no longer for me, I looked around local places and ended up finding a grocery store chain. I heard about that job from others who had worked there in the past and decided to apply. I also spoke with my neighbor who worked there and asked her if I could use her as a reference. She gave a me a few tips on how to apply as well. The application was online, but she told me that after I applied, I should call and speak to the manager on the status of the application. This lets them know that out of all of the people who filed an online application, you were the one that is the most interested; it makes you stand out. They reviewed my application and set up an interview with me. During the interview they asked me about my prior experience at the restaurant, simple questions about how I would handle different situations, and told me about the job in general.
My prior experience as a cashier came in handy later on because after 3 months of working there, I was promoted from a bagger to a cashier.
Continuing the list of things I learned:
4. Networking helps. The fact that the manager at the restaurant recognized me help a great deal. Also, because I knew that my neighbor worked at the grocery store, I was able to use her as a reference and she gave me a few tips on applying. (I later found out they didn’t contact her, meaning I got the job on my own :), I was quite proud).
5. After going through one application process or interview, the second time around is less nerve-wrecking. At first, it was intimidating to talk with managers and higher-ups, but after some practice and experience, it gets easier; after all, the are just normal people looking for some people to hire.
6. To get hired, you have to appeal to the employer. If they don’t like you, neither will the customers. They want to see that you are not a slob and that you are presentable and friendly.
7. Don’t quit your job until you have another one lined up. When I wanted to leave the restaurant, I made sure that I had another job before I quit. When looking for your first job or your next, just keep your eyes open around town to see any “Help Wanted” or “Now Hiring” signs. Don’t forget to speak to a manager, not an employee, when inquiring about a position. Also, try to leave on good terms; when I quit working at the restaurant, my manager told me that if I ever wanted to come back, I could.
8. The application process for my first job went smoothly, almost too smoothly. It was my first application ever, and I got hired. As I found out when looking for a second job, I applied to department stores and clothing stores, and then I finally found my grocery store. It wasn’t my first choice, but I loved that fact that it was more hours and higher pay than the restaurant.
Hopefully my experiences and tips will help you find and get that job. If you have any questions or need any advice, please comment!