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Edition 122 – A Career or a Job?!

In Edition 109 of Growth (28th February, 2018), I relayed the story of our youngest son, Fraser, and his success at picking up two casual positions in the hospitality industry, simply by knocking on doors and asking.

He settled into one of the positions he was awarded. He learned some new skills and enjoyed working alongside a bunch of new people.

However, there was something he was uncomfortable about.

You see, in the hospitality industry, the work is mainly casual. So, whilst he was enjoying what he was learning, he wasn’t doing enough earning. He was working, at best, 24 hours per week. That wasn’t enough work for him to be able to save for the car that he had his eye on.

Fraser was starting to come to the realisation that he needed to figure out – did he want a job, or did he want a career?

The job paid well – when the hours were there. It paid even better on weekends, when penalty rates gave him an inflated return – great for him, but hardly profitable for the family business he worked inside of. However, he quickly realised that casual work wasn’t going to get him to his ultimate goal – to buy his first home.

By chance, at the time he was starting to mull this all over, he had an enquiry out of the blue. He’d applied for a traineeship in mid January 2018 that he heard nothing about until April. He was contacted by the traineeship provider, attended an interview and was put forward for two positions. In mid April, he was awarded an Administration Traineeship with a local building company.

Each day he comes home now, he’s busting with enthusiasm. The work he’s been doing – the building projects that he’s become a part of – the new people he is meeting – the skills that he is picking up. You can see that he can see that he is building the pathway towards the future he wants to create for himself.

As parents of our children, I see it is our role to help steer them on the right track and offer them wise counsel when they have “fork in the road” moments. That applies even when the counsel is not considered that wise by the recipient, nor the timing right for them.

Similarly, as employers and owners of family businesses, our role is often more than to merely give an employee a job. Inside a family business, as owners and managers, we are seen as the people to look up to.

We are the mentors they often need not just in their work life, but in other parts of their life.

We are the ones that set the example by our words, but moreso by our actions.

We are also the ones for whom ten minutes of time, or some sage advice, will resonate with that person for the remainder of their lifetime, just like our mentors did when we were young.

I would suggest that over my years of being in business, I employed more than 100 people in various roles. Some of them became my business partners. Others went on to establish their own businesses. Others still came in empty handed in terms of skills and left to the next role not only with our blessing, but with our satisfaction that we had played a part in the development of someone into something better, more knowledgeable and more valuable.

For all of them, it was my belief that if I helped them to develop, it was not only good for them, but also good for business and good for me personally.

For all of them, it was about helping them work out whether they wanted a career or a job – and there is a marked difference between the two.

This Week’s Tip

“What are you doing, for the those around you, to help them consider what their journey in life will look like – and then helping them make those first steps?”