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From Barista to Corporate

- Mar 7, 2013

What do you do if your skills seems so specialized that you aren’t sure how it applies to any other job?

Think outside the box and try to find ways to redefine yourself.

What if you have spent the last five years being the person at the espresso shop that hands the drink to the customer? What are you? The drink conveyance engineer? Or are you the customer service specialist and retail quality control leader?

“For five years, I have been the final say on the quality of our product. Be any item was handed to a customer, I would double check their order, verify that it meets our standards and present it to the customer.

“I was also the customer service representative who would resolve customer concerns. If something wasn’t right, they would come to me first. I would find a solution and motivate them team to create the solution as soon as possible.”

It sounds like BS, but in reality, that’s what you did. If, instead standing behind a coffee counter you did this from behind a desk at GM or Boeing or Microsoft, you would be making $250,000 a year and you might only deal with three customer orders in a month. Instead, you took care of 500 customers a day with over 50 separate items that could be combined into over a million variations.

So, the moral of the story is simple: Don’t look at simply what you did in the context of that one job (hand coffee to customers), but break your job down to its component parts and find words to describe it that apply to the wider world (customer service, quality control and complaint resolution).

If you aren’t sure how to do this, go to your local employment agency (not the government people, but a private company) and ask them to help. They will show you how what you did applies in the bigger world.

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