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Flipping Burgers & Rockstars

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Bernie just finished his training session at the local hamburger fast-food company. So he was a little nervous being behind the register for the first time. His first customer ordered a soda.

“Bernie,” the manager said, “remember to say 'Welcome to our restaurant' to each customer before they order.”

His second customer ordered a cheeseburger. This time, the manager approached Bernie again and said, “Remember to ask each customer if they want fries with their order.” At this point, Bernie started to feel uncomfortable having the manager come and correct him every time he served a customer.

And then a man came in wearing a ski mask, approached Bernie at the register and pointed a gun in his face. “Give me all the money you got in that register, kid!”

Bernie took one look at his manager, thought to himself, and quickly said, “Would you like that for here or to go?”

Working in the fast-food business is not easy. It’s a joke in America. Flipping burgers is. And the sad thing about it is that it’s not even funny. Let me give you an example. Here’s a joke that has circulated on the Internet.

The graduate with a Science degree asks, “Why does it work?”

The graduate with an Engineering degree asks, “How does it work?”

The graduate with an Accounting degree asks, “How much will it cost?”

The graduate with a Liberal Arts degree asks, “Do you want fries with that?”

It implies that flipping burgers or working in a fast-food restaurant is degrading? But is it?

I have always known the world famous Zig Ziglar as a very positive motivational speaker. This is why I was surprised when he became upset. And in one of his tapes I heard him say, “I get so irritated when some of these high-paid athletes, high-paid television and moviestars, when they belittle those hamburger flippers.”

The reason why Ziglar is irritated is that these “burger flippers” have two or three choices in life. They can either get an honest job. And flipping burgers and working for a fast-food company is honest. That way they can take care of their own needs or help out their family. Or they can go on welfare, get into drugs or prostitution. So now decide for yourself which is more desirable.

The exciting thing about burger flippers and all those who have similar jobs working in the fast-food industry is that each and everyone of them learns important lessons in life, such as

1. Dependability – They have to show up on time and they have to work until a certain time. There is another word for this and it is called “Responsibility.”

2. Customer Service – They learn how to treat their customers with courtesy and respect. They develop their people skills.

3. Technology – They learn how to operate those high-tech machines. They develop mechanical skills that you and I don’t even have.

4. Presentation – They learn that it is important to keep oneself neat and clean.

5. Leadership – They learn how to lead their peers and they learn how to submit to authority.

Now you tell me, are these not lessons that can prepare them for future successes in life?

Meanwhile, what are the cocaine-alcohol-addicted-driving-while-intoxicated-demanding-only-green-M&M’s-in-their-contract rockstars and moviestars learning anyway? Not very much, wouldn’t you say?

I just finished training some of the managers of a leading fast-food firm and many of these dedicated leaders flipped burgers at the start of their careers. Today they are successful.

There is no such thing such as an honest job that is demeaning. Flipping burgers is not beneath one’s dignity. Our grandparents had a different word for burger flipping. They called it opportunity.

It’s not the nature of the job that is important. It’s the nobility we put into our job that is.

Be proud of what you do as long as you are doing it honestly and giving it your best.

Show appreciation and thank God for the opportunity. Nevermind the proud and the arrogant. Men look at the externals but God looks at the heart.

Print ed: 04/10


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