November 2016, Part II
More Than Just Good Deals. The Wall Street Journal recently profiled workers at a New York City J.C. Penney who chose to take advantage of the incentives offered to work on Thanksgiving and Black Friday. According to the store manager, Vickey Chernyak, J.C. Penney heavily focuses on worker morale during the holiday season. Some of the key incentives that the store offers include double pay, raffling off gift cards to employees every hour the store is open, and an additional 10 percent discount on top of the usual employee discount for purchases in the week leading up to Thanksgiving. The store also provides other incentives for employees, including a full Thanksgiving dinner and dessert later at night. Krystina Gago, who has worked the early shift on Thanksgiving day for three years, stated, “The associates I work with are like family to me because I spend more time with them than my own family. We do sacrifice, but it is rewarding.”
Training And Education For A Lasting Career. In a recent piece about free culinary arts training offered by the Salvation Army, Sacha Pfeiffer of The Boston Globe sheds light on the demand for jobs and the long-term career opportunities available in the restaurant industry. Recent graduate Ishana Strazzero-Wild, who is beginning a cooking job at Mario Batali’s food emporium, Eataly, explained: “It’s an industry you can enter without having to worry about the job market.” Echoing this sentiment, Robert Luz, chief executive of the Massachusetts Restaurant Association, said: “The beauty of our industry is if people have a really good attitude and want to learn, they can go from the dish room to the boardroom and everywhere in between. I’ve seen an incredible number of people grow their career from line cook to assistant kitchen manager to kitchen manager to chef and beyond, so it’s the road to middle income for a lot of people.”
Service In Military Builds Foundation For Service Sector Career. This November, Path Forward has recognized our veterans and the employment opportunities available to them in the service sector after returning home. Peter J. Mihajlov, Founding Partner of Parasole Restaurant Holdings, Inc. and veteran infantry officer in the United States Army from 1962-1965, recently penned an op-ed for the Huffington Post about how the military prepared him for a 39-year career in the restaurant industry. “Serving in the military was the foundation for my success,” he wrote. “It taught me discipline and decisiveness. It taught me loyalty and dedication above all else and it gave me the confidence and leadership skills to have a successful, rewarding career in an industry that welcomes veterans and values our skills the skills that come with serving our country.”
First Jobs: A Starting Point To A Better Future. On November 17, Bill Thorne, Senior Vice President for Communications and Public Affairs at the National Retail Federation, penned a Medium op-ed emphasizing how important first jobs are over the course of one’s life. He goes into detail about how the service sector provides more entry level jobs than any other industry, and how these jobs provide workers with vital skills and knowledge to help them thrive in the workplace. Thorne wrote, “Most people remember their first job, and not just for the extra dollars it put in their pockets. We remember it because for many of us it was the time when we began to develop a sense of professional responsibility and workplace habits that would serve us throughout our working lives.”
A Career Worth Working For. Earlier this month, the National Retail Federation continued their #RetailAcrossAmerica series in Utah, with a video entitled “My Retail Career.” In the video, several people discuss the rewarding nature of the initial retail jobs they took, and their success working up to the managerial or corporate level. To see the full video, click here.
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