What can a Teen Learn at a Fast Food Restaurant Job

A teenager working in a fast food restaurant environment with its low pay and high activity will find it to be a situation that reveals something about their nature and personality. Any job of work is a learning curve and for young men and women, the responsibility of working in a fast food outlet can be a valuable experience that will aid them in years to come. Regarded as a menial type of work, being employed in a fast food restaurant is usually perceived as a means to earn some cash until a “real” job comes along.

Even if it is regarded as a temporary job of work for the teen, it is a time where they can learn valuable lessons that will prepare them for a more permanent job or career in the future. The opportunity of working in a team environment helps them learn the need to co-operate and communicate with others as part of the workforce. A fast food restaurant can be a hectic place at times and this will call for young people to be alert and able to listen to communication from their managers.

As a place that is public by nature, it is a job where there is no hiding place. Every worker has to pull their weight and work for the overall good of each other. Dealing with the public can be difficult and requires young people to learn manners and to display the ability to give good service to the patrons. Training may involve simple things like addressing customers as “sir” or “ma’am” and making sure to say “thank you”. This kind of training can only enhance a teen’s personality and help them to understand the value of being of service to others.

Learning to take and act on instructions from superiors is another valuable lesson young people learn in the fast food environment. It becomes evident very early on that this type of work requires listening to and acting on requests from management, instructions that may involve some kind of work the teen does not expect. Being assigned to cleaning as opposed to serving can be a test of a young person’s willingness to co-operate. Working in a fast food restaurant reminds teens that they are just one person working as apart of a team and that requires following direction.

Though working in a fast food outlet may only be a stepping stone to a better job, the money young people earn will be welcome and gives them a level of independence as they provide for themselves to an extent. Learning how to manage their hard-earned cash will prepare them for life in the future when cash flow issues will become greater. Even though the wages may be low, it is an opportunity to get some practice on managing their own finances and learning how to save. Working in a fast food restaurant may not be a job for life, but for the teenager, it can give them valuable experience as employees, building qualities they can use in later life.