On Target

By now you’ve read the story:

A young man walks into a Target store to buy a clip-on tie for a job interview, but has to settle for a regular one, which he did not know how to tie.

Enter a gracious and caring Target employee.

Not only does the employee show the young man how to tie it, he offers a brief lesson in firm handshakes, and rehearses a few interview questions with him.

I don’t recall what I wore to my first interview (at Great America amusement park in Santa Clara, California), but I am certain that it wasn’t a suit and tie. That said, I did take the interview seriously, and there is no doubt that this young man did, too.

I hope he got the job.

First interviews — especially at sixteen years old — are nerve-wracking. While my dad waited in his car, I was inside the Great America wardrobe building sweating bullets.

I don’t remember receiving a question that I knocked out of the park, but I did impress the hiring manager because I knew both my driver’s license-, and social security numbers by heart.

When I exited my dad’s car, he said, “Hey boy, firm handshake, eye contact, good grammar, and good luck.”

Nothing romantic in those instructions. There was no “seize the day!” or “own it!” or “be more man than him!” Okay, I stole that last line from Apollo in Rocky III. But you get my point.

The gentleman at Target gave simple, sound advice to a young man that he had never met. And even if he didn’t get the job, he walked out of Target with much more than he came in with.

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