When I was about 14 years old my Dad decided it was time for me to get a real job and do some good old fashioned manual labor outside of Youth Haven. So I embarked on a three year journey of working for an electrician and then as a hod carrier making mortar and grout for a masonry company. In these jobs I quickly learned about doing what the boss said, being punctual, and working in less than ideal situations. As I got older I took vocational classes on working in a more business like environment, doing job interviews and what not. Then came the days of working at the Solheim Center at Moody where I had to learn more and more about being professional as I worked with the NBA and other organizations like Kraft foods and US soccer.
Even though each of these jobs that I had in my teen years and early twenties taught me a lot about being a good professional employee, I think even before that my parents instilled in me a good work ethic and I just knew to be respectful.
I know as this blog goes along it may seem like I am getting ready to become a whiny old man complaining about today’s youth, yet as I have been working more and more with kids I have become more and more discouraged about their lack of a work ethic. When they show up late for work and you question them about it, and rather than accepting responsibility and not doing it again, they smart off and act like I am wrong for daring to question them, and then they repeatedly do it again and again. Having to repeat how a job should be done over and over, discussing proper work attire, how to answer the phone respectfully, that you don’t smart back when given an assignment. Also, just not following through when you give your word or commit to doing something.
Like I said, not wanting to write a blog here to whine, but to challenge people as a parents, role models, educators, and etc…to really challenge our kids to develop both a strong work ethic and respect for authority. It’s not that they are being force to compromise who they are as a person, it’s just respecting the job and others enough to grow as humans, learn and advance in life. And even more importantly, that our Christian students realize how their work ethic and respect of adults impacts their personal testimony. Please challenge and pray for our youth today…