In today's society, it is likely that individuals make both minor and major moves within their career. Over the years, I have learned that despite how minuscule or unimportant a job may seem, most of the time it encompasses some sort of skill that will be transferable in the future. leading you to new opportunities and ultimately increasing your earning potential. My name is Sylvester Gittens and for my first blog I would like to share with you experiences from my first position working as a teenager in White Castle and how I still, to this day, make use of the skills I acquired within that job.
I thought working at this job would be an amazing experience due to its portrayal within the movie Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle. Turns out that I couldn’t have been more wrong! I smelled like onions, the customers were extremely rude, and after eating the food the burgers made me run to the bathroom faster than Usain Bolt. I told myself I could never work in fast food again! Unfortunately, I could not quit my job at the time because I needed the paycheck. However, when the urgency to get out kicked in, I went home and for the first time ever I wrote down my goals.
My older brother always gave me lectures about being great and instilled in me that failure wasn’t an option. One day, I finally started to internalize his words and started surfing the Internet for self development articles.I came across an article that would change the outlook of my experiences. The topic of the article was Transferable Skills, and it promoted finding the transferable skills from every situation. It took me about a week to find the transferable skills from working at White Castle.
1. Customer service: I learned how to deal with rude customers and to never let my emotions get the best of me.
2. Building relationships: Our staff and client base was very multicultural in terms of age, culture, and gender.
3. Managing money: I taught myself to save and plan how I would use my check.
4. Leveraging resources: I learned to ask for help and use the people around me.
5. Trial and error: I learned that is was ok to fail as long as I learned from my mistakes.
6. Work smart: I always found easier ways to complete tasks more effectively.
I applied this same concept of transferable skills to school and soon earned admission into a community college. I asked my big brother for advice (use of resources) and he informed me that I could eventually transfer to a University. I got accepted into the University at Buffalo, who originally rejected me when I applied in high school. The rest was history. I graduated with a degree in Business Administration with concentrations in Marketing and Information Technology. I had an interview with Google (I beat out 3k applicants for the interview!); I didn’t get the job but it gave me confidence for my next interview at Ingram Micro. I have been with Ingram Micro for over three years now and was promoted four times. Additionally, I started my first business, Elevated Progression.
I learn from each experience and write down each and every transferable skill that I add to my tool set! I challenge you to do the same. Share your story below!
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