Current Position: Bushel, CEO
First Job: Crew Member, Dairy Queen
1. I learned about timeliness.
In order to be “on time”, I needed to physically be at the punch card station every time I worked. That was a great lesson I learned in how important it was to show up and be accountable.
2. I learned how to work with a huge variety of people.
From my coworkers with highly varying skills of communication and ability, to angry or incompetent people trying to make orders at the drive-through, I had to work with them all.
3. I learned basic money skills.
Lots of people still paid cash then, so counting change and using the till was a big deal. I learned how important checks were and that they could bounce. Yes, people bought ice cream with paper checks.I don’t remember seeing a lot of credit cards back then.
4. I learned how great ice cream is.
I love ice cream, and I ate enough for an entire lifetime when I was there.
5. I learned how having a boss felt.
You were never truly in control of what would happen the next day at work or if you had a job. It may be part of the reason I started my own business. I didn’t enjoy that feeling.
6. I learned professional communication.
When you work at the till, with a boss, or at the drive-through window, clear communication is really important. I think it improved my communication skills really early on.
7. I learned how to be accountable.
I had to make sure we followed through accurately on orders, cleaned the dishes and bathrooms, and made sure everything was ready for the next shift. That consistent set of tasks that needed to be completed helped me understand how accountability worked early in my life.
8. I learned why having a driver’s license mattered.
I got myself to work each day because in North Dakota you could have your permit at 13 and license at 14. So keeping that license was pretty important to keep a job!
9. I learned the value of money and time.
I got paid hourly, had opportunities for raises and learned the value of working and the value of money. Then I went and spent it on cars.
10. I learned that business can create value and wealth.
I watched the Dairy Queen owner work hard to make this restaurant make money for their family. They did well, and I learned early that a business is one way to create long-term wealth and value.