Teens have a bit of a catch 22 when it comes to finding a job because oftentimes they do not have prior work experience to get them in the door. They want to earn their own money and get real experience, but how can you find the right mix? There are many opportunities to assist your teen with acquiring more real world skills if you know where to look. Here are a few ideas to help you both.
Childcare or Mentoring
If your teen enjoys taking care of children and has a nurturing heart, this might be a good job for them. Have them nanny or baby-sit for kids in your neighborhood, or offer tutoring services for the subject they excel in. Not to mention, there are programs like Big Brother Big Sister who appreciate people who can master children mentoring skills. Your teen will need to be very responsible, patient, and reliable.
Depending on where you live, yard maintenance might include mowing the lawn, spraying for weeds, or cleaning up after pets. Additionally, your teen could shovel snow from driveways during the winter. Some people do not have the time or are physically unable to maintain their yard. Your teen can make good money if they build up their clientele and consistently do a quality job. Your teen should have good attention to detail and be reliable. Use this work to get into other labor jobs and show they have experience following direction and doing things on their own.
A retail job will provide your teen the opportunity to interact with the public. They might restock shelves, create displays, inventory merchandise, or operate a cash register. This type of job is in high demand during the holiday season, so it shouldn't be too difficult for your teen to find a retail job during this busy time of year. Oftentimes, there is a store discount for employees, which might be beneficial if your teen works at a place where they like to shop. Your teen should be sociable and a good team player to work in this environment.
Food service is another job where your teen will interact with others and develop their social skills that will come in handy on all types of jobs. They will also be required to work as a team with the other restaurant workers. Restaurant staff has the opportunity to earn tips, which can make this job very profitable for a teen. They could work as a host or hostess, busboy or busgirl, wait staff, or even a cook. Your teen should be willing to follow instructions, work on a team and have good people skills.
Overall, if your teen needs to get more real work experience, then there are opportunities available if you know where to look. They will need to demonstrate character traits such as responsibility, reliability, and dedication. Real world work experience will provide the stepping-stones for future jobs and careers.