Dear Kid:

Today you asked me for a job.  From the look of your shoulders as you walked out,  I suspect you've been turned down before, and maybe you believe by now that kids out of high school can't find work.

But, I hired a teenager today. You saw him. He was the one you passed who had a big smile on his face, and a necktie. What was so special about him?  Not experience, neither of you had any.  It was his attitude that put him on the payroll instead of you. Attitude, son. A-T-T-I-T-U-D-E.  He wanted a job badly enough to put on a nice shirt, get a haircut, and look in the phone book to find out what this company makes.  He did his best to impress me.  That's where he edged you out.

You see, kid, many of the people who hire other people aren't "with" a lot of things. We have some Stone-Age ideas about who owes whom a living. Maybe that makes us prehistoric, but there's nothing wrong with the checks we sign, and if you want one you'd better tune us in.  Your first questions were: "What are the hours?", "How many vacations would I get?", and "How much do you pay?"  I knew when you asked those questions that you weren't going to get a job here.

Ever hear of "empathy?"  It's the trick of seeing the other fellow's side of things.  I couldn't have cared less that you needed "some steady cash."  How you pay your car payment and insurance is your problem, and the bank's. What I needed was someone who'd go out in the plant, keep his eyes open, and work for me like he'd work for himself.  If you have even the vaguest idea of what I'm trying to say, let it show the next time you ask for a job.  You'll be head and shoulders over the rest.

Look kid:  The only time jobs grew on trees was while most of our country's manpower was wearing G. I.'s and pulling K. P. For all the rest of history you've had to get a job like you get a girl: "Case" the situation, wear a clean shirt, and try to appear reasonably willing.

Maybe jobs aren't as plentiful right now, but a lot of us can remember when master craftsmen walked the streets. By comparison you don't know the meaning of "scarce."

You may not believe it, but all around you employers are looking for young men smart enough to go after a job in the old-fashioned way.  When they find a fellow like that, they can't wait to unload some of their worries on him.

For both our sakes, get eager, will you?  Good luck!