Don’t pick a job. Pick a boss.

I recently came across this quote that has always stood out in my mind:
“Don’t pick a job. Pick a boss. Your first boss is the biggest factor in your career success.  A boss who doesn’t trust you won’t give you opportunities to grow.” – William Raduchel.
Many times throughout my career, I’ve had the opportunity to visit college campuses and universities to address graduating students on a variety of topics. One of the most frequently asked and sought-after questions that I’m asked is: “What type of company should I work for after I graduate?” My answer is the most important rule to remember about your first job. It is not the company or organization for whom you choose to work, but more importantly, who will be your first boss. Sure, the company name will look nice on their resume, but it’s the hands-on, real world work experience they don’t get in the classroom that will have the greatest impact on their career versus the shiny name on the building.
I encourage college graduates to find someone who is willing to invest the time to mentor them, trust them and allow them to grow and make errors. It’s all part of the orientation into the work force process. According to Kenneth H. Blanchard, author of The One Minute Manager, “the best minute I spend is the one I invest in people.” My oldest daughter recently graduated from college and has been very fortunate to have landed a position with a small firm where she is being challenged and mentored with an opportunity for quick growth and advancement.
As hoteliers, we need to ensure we’re training and mentoring our entry level managers and effectively managing expectations. Giving new managers the ability to grow and make mistakes will quickly tell you if they have the capabilities and strengths to be a good leader. Those who wait to be told what to do versus those who are self-driven and self-motivated are more apt to climb the company ladder at a quicker pace. When effectively managed and mentored, the cream will rise to the top when we give them the chance to do so.