T Nation


Im 18, still in high school and i need a job? Anyone have a really good job when they were 18? Maybe there is something im missing.


Get the Job my son wants, where you get to work at a Electronics or Car stero store. They give you 75% to 80% off everything and expect little or no work. Have trouble finding a job like that? So does he, which is why he mooches of me…

Are you looking for a career or just something to make a little cash while you finish highschool and go to college. i would check out a grocery store, or restaurant work. Grocery store usually have flexible hours, and you can get some decent pay and benefits. At the restaurant, if you wait tables or bus, you can make some good money, and only work 4- 6 hours a night. You might also be able to get a job as a prep cook, and then maybe start a career cooking.

I was managing a bowling alley at 19. Whatever job you find, stick with it. Show up everyday, kiss ass, work hard and smile. This is a fail proof formula unless you’re an ugly person. My experience is that those that aren’t as easy on the eyes don’t tend to do as well in the “education doesn’t matter yet” jobs. Trust me, no matter what the job is, it’s allways better if you’ve got someone to boss around :wink:

At 17 I was a lifeguard at a State Park–I highly recommend it.

Ya its just for some extra money. Just need something until june , when i hope to get a warehouse job.

Wait or bus tables at a classy restaurant. Don’t be a slaker and you can make enough to get your life started.

What city do you live in? I work for Livebridge which has call centers around the world, and are expanding super fast. I sit at my computer all day in a dream word listening to phone calls.

US Army at 18.

Wait tables or be a busboy. Just be sure to pick either a high class restaurant or one with a really high turnover of customers. Almost all of your earnings are cash and you don’t have to wait til the end of the week to get paid.

Just be sure that you work for a place that’ll let you keep your tips. I worked at a place that had 15% added to the bill, but they payed the waitstaff an hourly wage and didn’t let them keep any tips. That Sucked.

As for a summer job, in my opinion you should skip the warehouse and do construction work. At least you’ll learn a trade!(and you can usually get all the overtime you want.) You probably already know how to pick up a box so you don’t need the warehouse to teach you that.

At 18 I was the GM of a high-end Japanese restaurant in Seattle. It was a great experience working with a different culture, dealing with 50+ employees and all the tax and business angles of running a small company. Granted I worked 10 hours a day and had an hour commute each way, but I maintained my GPA well enough to get full ride offers from a handful of prestigious colleges. It’s an experience I wouldn’t trade for anything.

But if you are looking for something a little less demanding, waiting tables is probably your best bet. Depending on the shifts you work and the establishment, you can make $100-600 cash a night. Or, if you’re fairly hot and can speak intelligibly and have a smidgen of charisma, try cocktailing. Better tips, better opportunity to work your mojo, better chance of networking for future employment.

 I feel your pain. I had the same trouble when i was 18. i would discourage you from anything that involves store or waiting as a job. they're the wort paying jobs aroundwith ignorant people for bosses who have no balls. plenty of ghetto and bums dworking in stores too. Check out waiting only if you think youll want to become a bartender in the near future, and do so at a restaurant that has a bar. you'll be able to watch the bartender and learn - hell probably show you some tricks of the trade. bars are looking for experience and couldnt care less if you got a course on bartending.
 What are your career goals? If you want to be a police officer you might want to get a job doing security - even though it wont matter to get a job as a police officer, itll be in your field. You want to be a pilot or airport manager? Get a job as an aircraft refueler. Or as a ramp agent/customer service agent for an airline - Most airlines will give you flight benefits which means youll be able to fly whenever you want where ever you want without paying a penny. With 50% hotel discounts and most stores and restaurants based around any major airport in the us. with free fedex shipping. And 8 buddy passes with 90% discount. That's what I did- they didnt pay much, but still good enough for someone who's 18. And you'll make great connections if you want to be a pilot - and that's the most important thing in the future and itll make all the difference as to wether you get a first flying job that boeing 737 for 65 grand the first year, or the regional turbo-prop for 22 grand a year.
 Likewise, if you wanna be a writer, get a job with a newspaper. You dont have to be writing articles, and prolly won't. But most companies need some help with smaller tasks, like clerical duties, or answering phones. Once you're in, you have references to put on your resume, connections to get a job in the future, and experience in a writing environment - which will make you a better candidate than someone whos been working registers at a local store. See my point? Most companies, regardless of the field hire people like you for help with clerical duties, or for refueling aircraft, or as ramp agents for an airline, or for security. Why? Because they're on a budget and can't afford to pay more than 8-12 bucks an hour. Anymore than that and theyd have experienced candidates by the handful. But they don't which makes it ideal for you- more money than youd get in a store, gaining experience in your setting as well as references and connections, not to mention something youll enjoy a little more. And a job that can actually be pretty chanllenging even though its not a salary job.

My advice- get a job that involves cash. Waiting tables can be hard (I’ve done it at 6 diff’t restaurants) and it is difficult to get the Fri-Sat night shifts where u make the most. But if you’re 18, maybe 40 bucks cash is a lot to you, in which case, go for it! Trust me, ten years from now you’ll laugh at what you thought was a lot of money. Try instead working at catering halls, either as a car parker or waitstaff. Much better environment and great tips. I also HIGLY recommend a job involving sales w/ commission- You may not or may earn a lot, but it will force you to develop people skills and bullsh*tting skills. Please get a job in a fun environment-don’t take a job at a soul-sucking store. Stores are horrible places to work. Good luck

I was working on the equities Trading desk at Morgan Stanley. Aaah! The days when buying stock was AN INVESTMENT.

At the moment, the economy sucks, so just get hold of anything you can. If your resume resembles a blank piece of paper, it's not going to be easy.

U.S. Military. The only job you’ll find that will take you at 18, send you to school, pay all your travel expenses, pay for your food, medical, clothing, housing, etc. If you think about it, its’ the greatest thing a young man can do with his life. Spend 20 years there, retire at 38 then go find some civilian job making loads of money because you’ll have tons of training and experience. Then you’ll be able to retire from that job at 58 and have two retirement checks to live off of. Just a suggestion. Some of the guys on here can give you their opinion about which branch is best. I was in the Air Force but in hindsight, wish I had chosen the Army. There are so many fields to enter into in the military these days. You don’t have to be a foot soldier unless that appeals to you. LOTS of technological stuff to choose from. Talk to a recruiter, believe none of what they promise you unless its in writing and once you settle on an MOS (specific trade) get them to guarantee it for you. Hope this helps. Good luck.

Since you taking this job until you graduate, try security guard. While in school (college) I would often work as a security guard on the 10 to 6 shift, then going to school during the day. I would always get a building that required minimum rounds. Mostly, I would spend my time in the lobby at the desk studying from 10 to 5, when the early shift would start to show. My grades during these period were excellent.
Best of Luck.

When I was 17&18, I worked at a grocery store. It was one of the most fun jobs I have ever had. There were always at least 4 and sometimes up to 15 people my age working there. We all worked hard, but also had a ton of fun. I go back to that old gorcery store now and then, it just doesn’t seem the same. It is not as busy and it seems like they are keeping the place much less staffed, but back back then it was a blast.

I still say gigilo. At 18 you’re perfectly qualified…

I work at the pizza restaurant at my neighberhood- It doesnt pay much (minimum wage), but it’s a lot of fun, you learn how to make pizzas, and a lot of my friends work there as well, so we have a good time. Another plus is that you get FREE PIZZA.