Is it “beer o’clock” yet?
File this one under the “Entitled and Clueless” category.
A few months ago, a young woman was fired from her job at Yelp.
Because she wrote an “open letter” to her boss and then posted it.
It sort of reminds me of a boss I had who actually asked me to write him an email with my frustrations.
Seriously? There is no WAY I would ever write such a thing to him. If I was frustrated, I’d work it out on my own. If I felt the issue needed his input to resolve it, only then would I meet with him to discuss it.
At any rate, Talia Jane’s letter went viral. Especially after she was fired for it.
You see, Talia Jane was complaining to her boss about how difficult it was to live on $8 per hour.
Stefanie set her straight.
My name is Stefanie. I’m not much older than you. I will be turning the big 3-0 in three weeks time.
It seems like a lifetime ago I sat in my sophomore year apartment crying about how I would never again be able to relate to Baba O’Riley or Scenes from an Italian Restaurant. But here I am, having survived my 20’s with some grace and a lot of humility.
However, despite our less-than-a-decade difference in age, it seems we are worlds apart in the concept of work ethic. But somehow, I’m not surprised. Those five little years are incredibly important.
Stefanie went on to tell her story.
When she was 22, she was let go from her office job.
As an English Major, the opportunities were slim.
She couldn’t afford to take an unpaid internship.
So she visited an Irish bar run by a family friend. She asked for advice.
He arranged for the General Manager to interview her. She ended up getting hired to be the hostess, working two nights a week. She took it.
She then worked hard and was given the opportunity to work as a cocktail waitress, even though it was for the worse night in the week. Again, she jumped at it.
Learned how to make a decent drink. And was eventually given the weekend shifts in December.
Again, she worked hard and made a respectable salary of around $50K – $60K a year – working only four days a week.
The humbling part was serving drinks to old high school classmates as they bragged about their “amazing” jobs.
One even looked at her as she was pouring a drink from behind the bar and drily said, “You seem to be doing great in life.”
But she knew the truth.
Many of those same classmates were deep in college debt.
Addicted to coke.
And hating their “amazing” job.
So although their parents gave Stefanie sad, pitying looks, she knew she was on a better track.
And finally, at age 26, Stefanie signed to United Talent Agency in LA and began her journey into television screenplay writing.
Hard Work + Patience = Success
No one is going to hand you success.
As Stefanie demonstrated with her story, you have to earn it.
Sure it seems daunting to take jobs that you know are below your skill level.
But you do it to gain other types of experience that never is taught in a classroom.
The marketing moral of the story is this: Tap into people’s emotions with a good story with strong emotional triggers.
For Stefanie’s, the key emotional trigger was shame.
She overcame it with hard work and determination.
It’s the classic narrative that made the film “Rocky” a blockbuster hit.
As a wise person said, “People may forget what you said, but they’ll never forget how you made them feel.”
Those feelings – in Stefanie’s case, shame and then pride – are the powerful cables that connect a buyer to your solution.
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