Are you finally the age where you can begin looking for that first job? If you’re a parent, you
might have teens living under your roof that need to get a job instead of playing so many video
games. Before going out to apply for that first job, there are few things that you need to know.
What Teens Should Know Before Applying for a Job
This is a tough part of a parents life. Teaching your teen how to behave in job interviews, and
how to conduct themselves in the workplace is very important. Below are some tips for helping
make this transition easier for your teen and yourself.
Most states do not allow teenagers under the age of 16 to work, however, some states allow
14-year-olds to work under a restricted amount of hours. Teenagers need to seek a job that is
looking for younger workers, so they have a better shot at landing the job.
Get a work permit
If a teen is under the age of 18, they will be required to get a work permit. You won’t be able to
work without one, so get it before you begin looking for a job. You can get your work permit at
your local high school administration office, and they can get you rolling in the right direction.
Before you fill out your work application, make sure you get the approval of several people, for
them to be your references. This includes teachers, coaches, pastors, or any other responsible
adults that will point out your successes and strengths.
Good location to home
Chances are, if this is your first job, you might not have reliable transportation yet. You need to
look for a job that is close to home that you could bike to, if you don’t have any other way of
getting there. This also takes the burden off others taking you to work if they don’t have to drive
you across town.
Skills needed for each job
Going to apply for a job out of a teen’s skill level will be a waste of time. The foodservice
industry and your local retail store is a great first job for teenagers. They are willing to teach
teens the skills they need to do the job properly. These jobs will prepare teenagers with social
skills and working with others, getting them ready for their careers.
What Teens Should Know About the Interview Process
Going in for that first interview can be terrifying and cause anxiety. Take deep breaths and make
sure you take bottled water or a mint to keep your mouth from drying out. Remember to make
good eye contact and have a firm handshake.
This sounds like a no brainer, but many interviewees have the tendency of showing up late, and
with an excuse. This puts a bad taste in the bosses mouth even before you get the job. Show up
at least 5 to 10 minutes early so they see that you are reliable. You might even be able to sneak
a peek at other employees and how they seem to enjoy the job.
Wear Formal clothing
If this is your first job your applying for, you probably don’t need to wear a suit and tie, unless
this is the everyday work attire. In most interviews for teenagers, wearing a button down shirt
with slacks, or a nice blouse with a skirt or dress pants will be perfect.
Focus on Strengths
Make sure you talk yourself up in the interview. The interviewer wants to see your confidence
level with yourself and your strengths and accomplishments. Point out how those strengths can
be beneficial for their company. They will also ask you about any weaknesses you might have,
and that’s okay to be honest. But show them ways you have overcome those weaknesses.
Be Straightforward with Your Schedule
If you have certain sports or band events that the job you’re applying will need to work around,
be upfront about it. It’s important to be upfront about potential schedule conflicts.
These are some ways that can better prepare you when you are going to apply for your first job.
What did you find to be helpful?