The Importance of Sharing Your Small Business Work Ethics

When business owners share their work ethic with their young employees, everyone benefits.

Where did you learn your work ethics?

In my experience as a small business advisor, I have noticed that when my clients share their work ethics with their employees, everyone benefits.

After a paper route and some straw baling, I landed a job during high school (over 30 years ago) as a grocery carry out boy. Doug Sadler, who was the owner of Sadler’s Highway Market, made a point to teach us kids responsibility, accountability, and how to work for a living.

The carry out job was Friday afternoons from 4pm until 9pm, and Saturdays starting at 7:30am working until 6pm. Mr. Sadler also had us come in on Sundays to mop the floors. We could have started at any time, as the store was closed, but Mr. Sadler always made us start at 7am.

Thinking back over the years, I credit Mr. Sadler for teaching me a strong work ethic.

Some older generation business owners may view the kids in the workforce today as spoiled brats who don’t want to work. I would like to explore that assumption.

Share your work ethic


Is it possible that not enough small business owners are making an effort to share their work ethics?

There is often a complacency regarding the business owner sharing their work ethics because these kids are just “putting in time” until they are done with college or decide on a permanent career. I think the summer jobs or part-time work could be positioned better to benefit the future generation of employees and employers. If we as business owners took the time to explain to the younger generation the benefits of a strong work ethic some of them would listen.

For a young person, working in a small business teaches them about customer service (good or bad), how to get along with co-workers and serve customers. The skills they could acquire are valuable and transferable to their future careers.

The younger generation wants a variety of experiences to stand out on their resume. We as business owners are in the position to be a positive influence and offer these kids, new to the working world, a chance to develop a strong work ethic. They might not like it at the time but it will be worth the effort.

And hopefully it doesn’t take them 30 years to write a blog post and thank you for it.

Thanks again Doug Sadler.

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