Distasio Law Firm September 2019

ISTASIO

D

SEPT 2019

PERSONAL INJURY LAW

LIFE & THE LAW

(813) 259-0022 | www.distasiofirm.com

MY FIRST STEPS IN THE WORKING WORLD You Gotta Start Somewhere

W hen I was 14 years old, I a lawnmower. Nobody told me I needed a job, and I wasn’t trying to save up for a new bike or anything like that. I just felt like it was time to begin making some money and earning my own way. So, I struck out with my parents’ old push mower in tow and gave it my best shot. To win customers, I used the age-old marketing tactic known as, “the first one’s free!” I offered to cut grass and hoped to do a good enough job to earn repeat business. The tactic worked, and, soon enough, I had a regular rotation of customers. Eventually, I invested in a Snapper automatic lawn mower, which was a pretty high- performance model in those days. It allowed me to push a lot faster, cover a lot more ground, and service a larger number of yards. I suppose it was my first lesson in investing in your own success. Soon enough, I added a second job, this one just as cliche as the first. My neighbor and his dad had a paper route, the kind that involved filling up those curbside newsstand boxes where you toss in a quarter, open the door, and pull started my entrepreneurial career in the way so many American teenagers do: with

out a paper. We’d head to the press in the wee hours of the morning and drive around placing piles of papers in the machines. I did this on the weekends to supplement my lawn mowing career. When I wanted to make enough money to buy a car, I knew a more regular job was in order. I needed more hours, and McDonald’s was a place that had them. Yes, my first three jobs were mowing lawns, delivering papers, and flipping burgers under the golden arches. I’m more than halfway to completing a row on “Archetypal American Jobs” bingo. I stayed at McDonald’s until college and worked when I returned on break. I got that car, and I also got promoted to shift manager. I may not work in any of these fields today, but the things I learned at these early jobs absolutely informed my journey toward opening my own practice. What I learned from mowing lawns was the importance of self-motivation. There was no boss telling me to be at the Smiths’ yard by 8 a.m. so I could make it to the Jacksons’ by 10. The job also taught me about the importance of exceeding expectations. Somebody would smile at a young kid for doing an adequate job, but they’d give them tips for a great one. From the paper route, I saw how important the unseen

operations that make our country tick are. We rely on lots of folks to keep our society running in ways we rarely acknowledge. From McDonald’s, I gained knowledge of systems and practices. In those days, the restaurants were basically run by kids. How did it work? Through rigorous operational efficiency and consistency. Every business has to rely on these systems to avoid confusion and stagnation. I may not serve thousands of fries in a day, but that doesn’t mean I don’t use systems for sorting case files, managing communications, and other tasks related to running a law firm. As you celebrate Labor Day this year, I hope you’ll consider the wide variety of jobs that allow us to live life as we do. We all do jobs that matter in ways both big and small, and we all started somewhere. That’s worth celebrating.

“Yes, my first three jobs were mowing lawns, delivering papers, and flipping burgers under the golden arches. I’m more than halfway to completing a row on ‘Archetypal American Jobs’ bingo.”

-ScottDistasio

1

(813) 259-0022

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