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by Vault Careers | November 16, 2011


Next week is Thanksgiving, but as you spend time with family reflecting on what you are thankful for, businesses are putting the finishing touches – not on their turkey feast – but on another Black Friday.  The anticipated and often-times most stressful time of the year – the official holiday shopping season - begins with a bang as stores from as little as the mom & pop shops no one really knows to such giants as Macy’s, Best Buy and Toys R Us open their doors with massive sales aimed at getting consumers to spend their money.  While the goal for families is to put Christmas gifts under the tree, business are looking to turn a profit at the end of the year, and to meet the demand they expect from consumers, seasonal job openings are being filled right up until the big day and even beyond. 

Willie Jolley HeadshotWillie Jolley, host of the Sirius XM Satellite Radio Show The Willie Jolley Wealthy Ways Radio Show, and author of the book Turn Setbacks into Greenbacks, says this is the greatest opportunity right now for the unemployed to get hired.  According to Jolley, it is estimated that 30% of companies will employ extra help for the holidays this year and many companies are still hiring right now.  He has offered tips on turning that seasonal holiday job into a full-time gig:

Don’t let your pride poison your prosperity.  If you feel you are overqualified, don’t go in with the attitude thSeasonal Jobsat you are better than the job.  Instead, use your knowledge to bring ideas and suggestions to the table.  Really impress management with just how valuable you are and show them that they can’t afford to lose you once the holidays are over.

See the seasonal opportunity as an audition for the bigger picture.  It’s the perfect opportunity because things never go as planned on Black Friday, so it’s the best time to showcase your problem solving abilities and people skills.  Everything from how to control a line to dealing with customer complaints offer you an opportunity to shine. 

Step up.  Everyone’s busy and the holidays are a crazy time for retail, so take initiative, be empowered, show you aren’t afraid to get your hands dirty, and prove you can take on a task with little direction.  If you finish your assigned duties early, volunteer to help your manager with something else.  It shows you are being a team player.

Customer service is king.  There are many people who are hard-working, but providing quality service isn’t something that comes easy for everyone.  Taking care of the little things that most people overlook is a great way to standout. Offer to help carry someone’s items to the car, to ship a package for a customer, and do everything you can to answer a customer’s question.

Take control.  Don’t just hope that you are offered a full-time job after the holiday season; make it known that’s what you want.  Let your manager or human resources representative know that you want to be considered for full-time employment from the start.  That also means treating this temporary job as if it’s the most important thing in the world to make sure you are offered full-time employment.

--Jon Minners,


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