A new career more than likely means starting at the bottom. Especially when you are working towards your dream job. Anything worthwhile takes time that includes your dream job too. Nowhere is that more apparent than among the stars. Madonna may be grossing in the millions now but back in the late 70’s it is unlikely her first and only paycheque from Dunkin Donuts grossed any more than $50.00.
For your career to take off you may have to do a few jobs first. It may have been difficult for the Manager of the McDonalds, Pink worked at, to imagine his employee as the pop mega star that she is today. Pink, however, probably dreamed of singing to the sea of people during dinner rush, as she rang a Big Mac meal into the cash register and held the mic in her hands to sing out dinner orders to the kitchen staff.
It is not unusual to see little girls playing grocery store or restaurant. They announce suddenly that when they grow up they want to work at Dairy Queen. What eight year old could resist the idea of free ice cream and pushing all those buttons like the cashier? It is unlikely though, that when Gwen Stefani was making banana splits she thought this was the end of the road for her. Stefani, like many entertainers, still had bills to pay. Even being a rock star was a stepping stone (pun intended) to be the fashion guru of the millennium.
Starting small, entry level or minimum wage can be a humbling experience. Ask Brad Pitt when he was clucking away in his chicken suit for El Pollo Loco if he felt like the sexiest man alive. Liken to Eva Mendes selling hot dogs on a sticks probably did not provide her very many advancement opportunities.
Ideally you start in the industry for which you would like to work. Doctors have been nurses to put themselves through medical school. Hugh Jackman worked as a clown for hire for birthday parties, it may not have been acting but it was entertaining.
Of course there are those jobs that regardless of the effort we put into it, we are just not cut out for it. Johnny Depp confesses he was the world’s worse pen salesman and Jennifer Aniston lasted one day as a telemarketer. Of course you may not want to put all your eggs in one basket by training in a completely different field just in case. Nicole Kidman could always go back to massage therapy should she ever tire of acting. Let’s hope not.
Four years of business school does not equal immediate entrance to the Chief Executive Officer’s office. University is great place to learn theory and comprehend various schools of thought. However, theory does not always translate neatly into application. Entry level jobs teach you about the business, about the culture of the workplace, and your place in it. Knowledge is power. Therefore, regardless if it’s a job to pay the rent, remember it as an opportunity to being that much closer to your dream job.