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For those of you who work on Wall Street or in Consulting/Corp Dev etc now, was just curious as to how many of you worked low-paying, barely minimum wage, blue collar type jobs like landscaping, server, telemarketing, roofing etc before you got to where you are now.

Describe your experiences.

Comments (49)

  • coffeebateman's picture

    Yeah, I had to work Big 4 audit for a summer.

    --------------------------------------------------------
    "I do not think there is any other quality so essential to success of any kind as the quality of perseverance. It overcom

  • In reply to coffeebateman
    mr1234's picture

    coffeebateman:
    Yeah, I had to work Big 4 audit for a summer.

    big fat LOL at that comment.

    i was telemarketer for a credit card company, from junior yr in hi school to the beginning of my soph yr at college. i made a lot of money for the hrs i worked.

    the funny thing is, when the financial crisis started to pick up steam, one of the first things i thought about was that job i had. i basically issued credit cards to ANYBODY who said yes over the phone, it didnt even have to be the person i was calling for. it was pretty bad...

    ---
    man made the money, money never made the man

  • Revsly's picture

    I worked at FINRA/NASD one summer... for some reason they paid $20/hr. That was pretty awesome.

    Jack: They’re all former investment bankers who were laid off from that economic crisis that Nancy Pelosi caused. They have zero real world skills, but God they work hard.
    -30 Rock

  • wookie102's picture

    got paid 2.50/hour plus tips as a waiter.

  • IronkidMS's picture

    man, that's how i put myself through college! being a server at restaurants was a good source of income during the school year. (mainly from tips). plus, learning to deal with pain-in-the-ass customers is pretty much a good training ground for dealing with pain-in-the-ass clients.

  • In reply to mr1234
    2007Grad's picture

    mr1234:
    coffeebateman:
    Yeah, I had to work Big 4 audit for a summer.

    big fat LOL at that comment.

    i was telemarketer for a credit card company, from junior yr in hi school to the beginning of my soph yr at college. i made a lot of money for the hrs i worked.

    the funny thing is, when the financial crisis started to pick up steam, one of the first things i thought about was that job i had. i basically issued credit cards to ANYBODY who said yes over the phone, it didnt even have to be the person i was calling for. it was pretty bad...

    Lol, interesting story

  • monty09's picture

    I sanded cars, washed dishes, cut grass, drove a van for a hotel and gave baseball hitting lessons to kids during high school and college..not all at one time but at some point...

    few traders behind me were waiters in college..

  • BradZ's picture

    I picked up trash at a hotel, served banquets, been a security guard at McDonald's and an electrical facility, worked in a summer camp, printed passports, worked as busboy in a night club and transported suicidal patients from one hospital to another.

    These jobs were all amazing life lessons and I learned a lot from them. It gives you a good kick in the ass when you do these things and see how depressed people around you are - definitely gives you an extra dose of motivation. As my father once told me when I was younger "Student jobs don't allow you to see what you would like to do with your life, but they show you what you don't want to do".

  • ThaVanBurenBoyz's picture

    Middle school: worked for a catering company under the table.

    High school: Super Target (meat & dairy dept., transferred to internal Starbucks--super prestigious).

  • CNB90's picture

    I'm just a SA right now. Last summer I worked at Subway for a couple of months, one night I walked into the bathroom to clean and found some large stinking Sh!@ on the floor -_- I quit right then and there.

  • EuropeanBob's picture

    Worked as a removal man, worked on a farm, etc.
    Worked every summer since age 16.

    As BradZ said, amazing life lessons.

  • whats-the-damage's picture

    Worked in a warehouse one summer. All we did was load and unload 18-wheelers with stuff for a wal-mart. I actually had it on my resume at one point and discussed it in an interview. I think the interviewer liked the fact that I did some physically demanding work.

  • RiskyBizness's picture

    I was in the military for 5 years. During college I hosted, bussed tables, waited tables, worked retail (Abercrombie, lol) and worked as a harbor diver.

    I look at it this way: at least my life would make a half way interesting book.

  • In reply to RiskyBizness
    LIBOR's picture

    RiskyBizness:
    I was in the military for 5 years. During college I hosted, bussed tables, waited tables, worked retail (Abercrombie, lol) and worked as a harbor diver.

    I look at it this way: at least my life would make a half way interesting book.

    haha I worked at Abercrombie as well

    Also spent some time working as a cashier at the supermarket. Best part of being a cashier was they keep your stats (like items rung up a minute, etc). So I basically tried to up my stats for personal satisfaction. I got pissed though cause at the end of the summer they put me on cart duty for a week. Trust me, nothing can be worse than making 7/hr to push carts around in the hot August son (Again, being a smart kid - not very strong- i was able to move the carts around quickly and then chilled for a few hours before the lot as a mess again) pushing carts around.

    If I ever make it big I can say I started at the very bottom.

  • JohnnyCage's picture

    I worked at target and my brother worked at a cinema. The worstpart was not recievng any training but being expected to work the floor and interact with customers.

  • In reply to CNB90
    2007Grad's picture

    CNB90:
    I'm just a SA right now. Last summer I worked at Subway for a couple of months, one night I walked into the bathroom to clean and found some large stinking Sh!@ on the floor -_- I quit right then and there.

    You should've at least cleaned the shit

  • beatallica's picture

    worked in university, doing rounds putting paper in printers and fixing paper jams etc. they paid £12/hour for that, so not complaining ;)

  • Ricqles's picture

    worked at my college,too. Was a technical support person who does everything from facebooking, playing online video games, do my homework, and occasionally helping out someone. Got paid 11 something bucks for that. Not a shabby job

  • In reply to beatallica
    2007Grad's picture

    beatallica:
    worked in university, doing rounds putting paper in printers and fixing paper jams etc. they paid £12/hour for that, so not complaining ;)

    Sounds like a pretty good gig actually

  • bobbymac's picture

    landscaping

    If if don't make dollars, it don't make sense.

  • MarkyMarkWahlbergWasAwesome's picture

    Swept popcorn at a movie theater and was a cart boy at on awesome golf course in high school (free movies to take the dates too & free golf, plus lots of tips from old golfers and all the beer me and my friends could drink leftover from tournaments.)

    however, my college jobs kicked ass. doorman on bourbon street and beerman at saints games. both paid damn well, and either got to watch football for free or get drunk in the french quarter at basically my own personal bar, with my own private balcony. pretty sweet shit. then i got an internship and threw it all away...

    ------------------------------------------------------------------
    "I just want to be a monkey of average intelligence who wears a suit. I'll go to business school!"

  • Cash4Gold's picture

    Currently a pipefitter by day, farmer by night. I did the grocery store thing when I turned 16. I was also a mason during the housing bubble. I could write a book on the things I saw people do.

    It is interesting to say the least what people think is a blue collar job, although there are some things on here I can never see myself doing.

  • CompBanker's picture

    FXTrading, I agree that a lot of the items listed above are not blue collar jobs.

    The closest I've ever had was working as a barback at a seafood restaurant one summer during college. I had to shuck oysters, replenish the beer kegs, bus the bar, etc. Hours were interesting (5pm to 11pm, 6 days a week, Mondays off) and the pay was horrible ($4.25/hour + shared tips with bartender, totaling maybe $7/hour on an avg night). Great experience though, really opened my eyes to the lives of those living paycheck to paycheck.

    CompBanker

  • In reply to 2007Grad
    beatallica's picture

    2007Grad:
    beatallica:
    worked in university, doing rounds putting paper in printers and fixing paper jams etc. they paid £12/hour for that, so not complaining ;)

    Sounds like a pretty good gig actually


    indeed was pretty happy as that took care of quite a lot of my personal expenses. Was bloody competitive though, they had some ridiculous 100 applications (CV and COVER LETTER!!!) for 2 openings!

  • Mgeezy's picture

    haha wow, you guys seem really soft. I wouldn't consider most of those jobs blue collar. this thread's way old but I feel like sharing some of the miserable jobs I've had.

    at 13, I started doing concrete work part time. at 16, I started at a restaurant as a bus boy, moved up to server in a few months, and did that for four years. I did decorative concrete work the summer after high school. then during college I did after-hours cleaning of a cafeteria kitchen. the next summer I was a maintenance man at an apartment complex, a window washer, and I worked in a warehouse. definitely the worst summer of my life. then I worked for a year digging graves. no joke.

    to bad none of that can help on my finance resumes...

    stick your chest out, keep ya head up...and handle it

  • D M's picture

    Construction, shipping, railroad.

    "You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
    "Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

  • In reply to Mgeezy
    Cash4Gold's picture

    Mgeezy:
    to bad none of that can help on my finance resumes...

    No, but once you get your foot in the door, telling the stories about your time in concrete will definitely get you immediate looks in a positive way. Unfortunately, just because someone is an intern doesn't mean they are willing to work. Bringing up the fact that you worked some shitty jobs just to get by added with the fact that you work hard (and smart) with whoever you are now working for should get you past that hurdle.

    If they don't understand, fuck them. You are better off elsewhere anyway.

  • DNOsaur's picture

    Life guard at a beach all throughout high school.

    It was the best job I ever had.

    no way kimosabe, this is my house now --Brennan Huff

  • txjustin's picture

    I built fence(barb wire), changed oil at a dealership, worked as a cashier at a restaurant, and was a waiter/bartender. These jobs, in my opinion, instill values and make you appreciate life more.

  • seabird's picture

    Maintenance at a campground - cleaned restrooms (not as bad as you'd think, Id drink coffee and listen to music and spray shit with a hose, plus free cheese steaks and fries) and dug ditches, loading and unloading at a farming supply store (mostly hay and fertilizer - great tips), and worked at a factory that made and sold ice (worst job Ive ever had for many reasons, probably almost as bad as how people describe IB).

    Gotta say, my brother worked a lot more, and harder than I did during those early years. He had to keep up his drinking and weed smoking habits though. Formative, indeed.

    “...all truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.”

    - Schopenhauer

  • D M's picture

    ^^^ Drinking on the job definitely helped keep me sane some of the time. Forklift + alcohol = best worst idea ever.

    "You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
    "Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

  • steve10219's picture

    Street Department - Laid asphalt, repaired signs.

  • xc48cross's picture

    Hostess, worked at an ice cream store, camp counselor, camp cafeteria server / dish washer (I now have some issues with mass quantities of food being served), worked at a sporting goods store, and a weight room in college.

  • animal2389's picture

    My first job out of college was a gig with a major airline. The catch was the job was a ramp agent. I was one of the dudes on the runway waving flashlights to direct the pilots and unloading all the cargo and baggage in the sweltering heat. It paid $11/hr. It was grueling physical labor unloading the aircraft and sticking to the schedule. I met some really cool people but also felt bad for them that this was their career. I spent a year at the airline while looking for a permenant career and the best part was that I could fly for free anywhere I wanted. I flew all over the world on my days off. The last 8 months I was there they moved me to customer service and sales in the airport. I threw on a shirt and tie and got $1 more an hour. I suddenly was working with hot girls and flying to random places with them including Vegas, Europe, South America etc. I was making shit money and was frustrated with my employment but at the same time it was one of the best years of my life. Besides te travel benefits I learned a great deal of soft skills that I will carry over for the rest of my career. The airport was extremely hectic ad I dealt with crazy assholes on a daily basis. Finally I got an offer in PWM at a BB. I absolutely crushed the interview. My experience dealing with all kinds of nutjob airport customers gave me a strong background for dealing with the diverse clients at a retail brokerage firm. Been here for 6 months and loving it.

  • trazer985's picture

    almost every top earner i know has had something like this. Lifeguard at uni, summer job doing menial shit at buckingham palace, door to door sales of sky tv. lower admin work too. Currently a quant trader.

  • woodywoodford's picture

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  • CountryUnderdog's picture

    "They are all former investment bankers that were laid off in the economic collapse that Nancy Pelosi caused. They have no marketable skills, but by God they work hard."

  • Hooked on LEAPS's picture

    Competition is a sin.

    -John D. Rockefeller

  • SirTradesaLot's picture

    adapt or die:
    What would P.T. Barnum say about you?

    MY BLOG

  • txjustin's picture
  • kraziazi's picture

    This could be it, sweetheart.

  • ThaVanBurenBoyz's picture