Recently a couple of Target employees in North Carolina garnered national attention when they helped a teen in the store. The young man came in looking for a clip on tie to wear to a job interview. Target didn’t have any clip on ties. Instead of brushing him aside, the Target employees helped him find a regular tie and then taught him how to tie it. If you haven’t already come across this story on social media, you can read it here.
A few things we can learn from these two employees:
1.They see beyond the surface need, for a clip on tie, and realize they can do something more to help. Cathy Scott and Dennis Roberts, chose to go a little further for a customer. Dennis Roberts, one of the two employees, helped him learn how to tie a tie, then gave the teen some pointers for the interview.
2. They helped with "soft skills." Because of the "plugged in" nature of our culture, many of our youth and young adults don't have the necessary soft skills they need for the workforce. Dennis and Cathy gave pointers on handshakes and eye contact. Simple things that are so important in the job force. And for this generation of students, they are not givens. Many of them need to be taught these necessary skills, and the importance of them.
3. Encouragement = Empowerment. This scene in Target ends with the young man being cheered on by his new found Target friends as he goes to his job interview. From what the young man says later, it appears that these few moments gave him courage for the upcoming interview. Not only was he well dressed, he was empowered by the support of others.
Not every student has hovering helicopter parents. Many of the students in our communities have little or no support at home. Encourage them as they interview for jobs, apply for classes and finish the semester. Your words may be just what they need to have the courage move ahead.