All around you there are small businesses. You may not even realize they are there. Some are in homes, others are in business parks, others are in the white trucks that drive around that say things like “Electrical” or “Plumbing” or “Installer”. Small businesses really drive the economy just as much as the massive businesses with tens of thousands of employees. What this really means for you as a seasonal job searcher is that you have the opportunity to get employed by small businesses just like large businesses. One specific category of businesses that always need help are eCommerce retailers since they are mailing and shipping products on a regular basis. Their business is also seasonal (though it might not be around the holidays) so they need help on a regular basis. The task is to find on that needs it.
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Case Study: MysteryPotato.com
Mystery Potato is in the gag gift business. As you can see from the website, they send personalized products to people all over North America. Their primary product is potatoes and they sell glitter bombs and aphrodisiacs as well. The idea of the business is to capture the attention of folks looking to send a unique gift and convert that into a sale. That is where you come in.
You might be a customer but that’s not what we are talking about here. MysteryPotato needs to fulfill orders. Though this seems simple it can take significant time to do. It involves steps like checking the address, buying and printing postage, personalizing the product, packaging the product, and taking a trip to the post office. These are the things we think about easily but there are other aspects to the business as well. They have to stock their products, maintain a website, purchase materials used for shipping, fight with their computer when it is being a problem, interact with the social following, and the list goes on.
The opportunity for you is that a small business like this probably needs some help during the year. The owners have rush times, probably around holiday’s or when a picture of a potato goes viral. If you are willing to work for a market rate near minimum wage you can get in the door easily.
What Skills Do I Need?
The most important skills will vary a bit from business to business and owner to owner. There are some that will come in very handy… here is a list:
- Simple computer skills
- Simple social media experience
- The ability to package something well
Additionally, there are some traits that are very, very important including:
- You need to be on time for work! It doesn’t matter that your car had trouble
- You need to be able to communicate clearly
- You need to learn when you make mistakes
- You need to be flexible
If you think that something like this might be for you then there is an opportunity for you to find work just about anywhere because these small businesses are located almost everywhere! Take a look around you for these businesses which you might not have noticed before and see how far you can take it. An entry level seasonal job can quickly become a full time position if you have the right stuff!
Image: package! by Beck Gusler on Flickr