CAREER ADVICE: The Desi HR Guy on the value of part-time jobs for students

Published: November 8, 2012

Part-time jobs may pay minimum wage but you can’t put a price on the skills you will develop.

Some students may not have structured work experience programs in their high schools but part-time jobs can provide similar benefits. I don’t know why some parents and students believe working part-time in high school will be unmanageable and have an adverse impact on academic performance.

Some excuses I have heard in the past include “he is our only son,” “Our daughter might start dating if she works,” “What will my friends, family, and neighbours think?” and the ever popular, “They have their whole lives to work and they should focus on school now.”

I believe that a part-time job will actually improve academic performance in most cases but let’s look at some other benefits. Almost any interview question one is going to be asked in a job interview is available online with the appropriate response(s). Hiring managers I consulted with also confirmed that young adults with limited experience start to sound the same after a few interviews. So how do young people make themselves stand out from the crowd?

When I review resumes of young adults who had jobs in high school, I notice that they stand out miles apart from the ones who did not as they:
• Are more confident in their interviews
• Are mature compared to their peers
• Understand the value of money and hard work
• Have above average time management and communication skills
• Have some depth on their resumes and provide real examples to tough interview questions

I once interviewed a high school student and noticed he had worked at McDonald’s. I asked him to provide me with examples of how he dealt with difficult customers in the past. His responses were unique and thought provoking. He described one sunny weekend in the summer when several of his co-workers called in “sick,” leaving his shift short staffed. To make matters worse it was unusually busy. He mentioned that it was challenging as he got yelled at regularly by impatient customers. Throughout the day he smiled and apologized to customers for the wait times and order errors, even though many customers kept changing their orders at the last minute. This was just one of the reasons why I hired this student.

Dealing with difficult and demanding customers (internal and/or external) is a fact of life in most professions; it could be the difference between succeeding or failing in a job. These skills can also be applied in successfully dealing with issues in one’s personal life. Anyone who has children or in-laws knows the true definition of demanding and difficult.

I would highly recommend parents of high school students to encourage their sons and daughters to apply for part-time positions at companies which help to build develop and enhance skills such as customer service, conflict management and multi-tasking. This includes but is not limited to McDonald’s, Tim Hortons, Starbucks, and Wal-Mart. Students also begin to learn how to manage their finances, be punctual, and a host of other important skills that will help them not only in their careers but also in life.

Pavi Toor is a Human Resources Manager and operates the site www.careersafterschool.com. He can be reached at pavi@careersafterschool.com

Tags: , , ,




Featured

football-100year journey

B.C.’s South Asian pioneer Ranjit Mattu mentored many football stars

SPECIAL TO VANCOUVER DESI Even as a child, Ranjit Mattu knew he had game. From his first play on the field of Mount Pleasant Elementary,…
Continue Reading »

pioneers

Dharm Singh Gill changed the way Sikhs were regarded for wearing turbans at work

SPECIAL TO VANCOUVER DESI Little did Dharm Singh Gill realize that an act of heroism would change the way Sikhs were regarded for wearing their…
Continue Reading »

Jacqui Feldman shows off a recovering Sugar, her 13-year-old poodle that Terra Nova vet Dr. Javaid Chaudhry, rear, helped save after operating to remove a tumour. Feldman, who is battling cancer herself, fell on hard times and couldn’t afford to pay the $3,000-plus for Sugar’s procedure.  Alan Campbell/Richmond News

Richmond veterinarian steps up to save cancer sufferer’s dying dog

ALAN CAMPBELL RICHMOND NEWS Richmond’s Jacqui Feldman, who’s suffering from terminal cancer, is crediting a local veterinarian with saving her life. It was a few weeks ago…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

A look at Alberta Premier Rachel Notley’s first cabinet

THE CANADIAN PRESS EDMONTON — A look at Alberta’s NDP cabinet sworn in Sunday: Rachel Notley (Edmonton Strathcona) Premier, minister of intergovernmental affairs. Notley, 51,…
Continue Reading »

Japan-Canada trade talks stalled with no meetings in sight

By Mike Blanchfield THE CANADIAN PRESS OTTAWA — Trade talks have stalled between Canada and Japan — one of the Harper government’s priority countries for…
Continue Reading »

football-100year journey

B.C.’s South Asian pioneer Ranjit Mattu mentored many football stars

SPECIAL TO VANCOUVER DESI Even as a child, Ranjit Mattu knew he had game. From his first play on the field of Mount Pleasant Elementary,…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

weight-loss

Do we need to exercise more or eat less?

JILL BARKER MONTREAL GAZETTE A battle is waging in the scientific journals between several prominent health and fitness experts. In one corner are physicians Aseem Malhotra,…
Continue Reading »

exam scores

Identical twins’ mark sheets almost as identical and the story of a courageous young achiever

HINDUSTAN TIMES AND VANCOUVER DESI They are identical twins and, interestingly, even their mark sheets look almost the same. Ranchi twins Aporupa and Anorupa Chattopadhyay …
Continue Reading »

India-pharma-under scanner

U.S. lawsuit puts generic drug imports from India under scanner

IANS Washington – A U.S. class action lawsuit accusing India’s Ranbaxy of large-scale deception on its generic drug applications puts a question mark on drug…
Continue Reading »

100 year journey

Apart from the overwhelming cold, Sucha Singh Bagri has fond memories of his first few days in B.C.

SPECIAL TO VANCOUVER DESI Sucha Singh Bagri arrived in Canada with his father Harnam Singh Bagri on Feb 2, 1935, on the Empress of Russia,…
Continue Reading »

swimsuits

Who wants to be a Princess? Beauty pageant contestants undergo rigorous training

VANCOUVER DESI Divas aspiring to become Indian Princesses are undergoing rigorous training before the grand finale of the beauty pageant in Mumbai. Indian princess pageant 2015 ◄…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Items of clothing are displayed in room 331 of the Martinez Hotel, where Parisian fashion house Elie Saab provides sartorial services to celebrities attending the 68th international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Thursday, May 21, 2015. During the Cannes Film Festival, room 331 is radically transformed into a red carpet emergency room - where celebrities like Naomi Watts and Nicole Kidman can rush to if they pop out of a dress, or a zipper breaks. Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP

‘Nip slips’ and broken zippers: Red carpet Emergency Room for Cannes wardrobe malfunctions always full of drama

THOMAS ADAMSON THE ASSOCIATED PRESS CANNES, France – For most of the year, room 331 of the Martinez Hotel is just your run-of-the mill luxury…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood

Bollywood beauty Aishwarya Rai doesn’t leave her daughter alone even for a night

HINDUSTAN TIMES Apart from walking the red carpet at Cannes Film Festival, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan is also screening footage from her upcoming film, Jazbaa. The first…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood

Photos: Aishwarya Rai an absolute stunner at Cannes 2015 (updated)

VANCOUVER DESI Former beauty queen Aishwarya Rai Bachchan has been a Cannes regular for over a decade now. But this year marks her comeback to the…
Continue Reading »