Pick your boss, NOT your job

Wanna be wildly successful? (pretty sure the answer here is “yes”)

I have a secret for you.

Pick your boss.Pick your boss

When I was seventeen, I got my first job in sales. I sold shoes for a national chain (NO, Do NOT stop reading – selling shoes can be a proud profession!)

I lucked into a position, frankly.

I just wanted a job. What I got was a mentor. My manager was amazing! He was a wizard! He was completely invested in my success. He taught me how to make buying a pair of shoes an EVENT for the customer. It was wonderful training and I thrived.

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I was made the Assistant Manager of the entire store as a seventeen-year-old student. I out-sold everyone ‘cuz of him.

Enter CARS

Then, right out of college, I got a job with a major car company as a Manufacturers Rep.

By sheer LUCK, I was assigned to a very special dealership in California. The family who owned this dealership was WILDLY successful and a pillar of their community.

(Aw, geez, I lost you on car sales, didn’t I? Come back. It’s worth it.)

This family was AMAZING. They took me under their wing and taught me how to sell a car so that people feel like coming back, year after year after year.

I became #1 of nearly 200 reps because of them.


I had been lucky. I had great bosses and great influences. They PROPELLED me.

For my next jobs, I took what I had learned (from my sheer luck) and started interviewing BOSSES, rather than interviewing for jobs.

I wanted someone who would SHOOT me to the NEXT LEVEL

So, I started interviewing with two things in mind.

FIRST, do I like the company I am working for? Do I value their values?

SECOND, is the person I will be working for interested in my success?

These were critical questions

What I found was that I could get paid a WHOLE LOT OF MONEY for working  with slimy companies and nasty managers.

BUT What I “picked” instead, was working for great companies with ambitious leaders who valued my growth and valued the work we did. The money came in time.

And it has worked! 

Year over year, I am number ONE in sales – no matter where I work.

I am satisfied. I am happy. I am a leader. I am confident.


Today I was on a call with Jack Canfield. He said that when he was first getting started, at VERY low pay, he worked for W. Clement Stone (a Big Deal in that time). Jack credits his roots of success from the things he learned from this very powerful man. He didn’t even mention the nature of the work he was doing, just the man he was working for.

Forget the money, forget the hours, forget the benefits…PICK A GREAT MENTOR.


Love your career UP!

The Irreverent Sales Girl

Thoughts about this...

5 thoughts on “Pick your boss, NOT your job”

  1. This is great ! As I’m working for a company that i worked for aout five years ago.thanks to heather
    .she was visiting the mall,saw a opening for shoes sales and a new store opening up. As I was out of work then, and as i reflected upon my past trainning with harriet and roger with shoes.I gave up the fact that this was not what i wanted to do -but, needed a job.Got the Job as a Ast. Manager.was not inspired with my bos-I wanted more.needless to say -I was promoted within 7 months to Store Manager! five years ,lossing my job in chicago and relocateing back to Ind. presently working for same company.two years in Sept. presently our store grew to almost a million $ store..And we are expanding the store.I just got a raise! and present to the best staff ever!
    after my second year recovering from a major back surgery.passion for the great sales,what does it take to promote one’s self to the next level-and what is that next level? I can make money,I know how to move things,space,promote,be happy,love people,and love that they love comming to our store.but, what is next ? you can only make so much $$,people come and go in retail,greatfull for all my customers and staff,but, I’m finding I want more in life,there is no place to go-nothing to get,no where to go ..so what is next ? hummmm…interesting ….

    1. Kimberly, Thank you for your thoughtful response. What’s next?

      I say concentrate on those core things that you are good at and enjoy. You said them perfectly in your post.

      Then, bring out the legal pad and start brainstorming…where would these skills best apply?

      Make SURE you hightlight those top words in a resume or application. I can’t wait to hear what you find.

      Please make sure to tell us! (Especially on http://on.fb.me/salesgirl).

  2. I think this is a tremendous lesson. I had similar results with the owner of a pizza place as a teen. Then with Gateway Computers where I ended up being a sales manager and trainer. When the owner or boss or director over you is confident in themselves and actually wants to see you succeed and they are willing to invest in you – it’s a huge opportunity for everyone involved. If only this were common practice.

    Now that you’ve experienced it yourself, you must make it your mission to give the same to someone else. It’s in that way we experience a transfer of knowledge and begin to have a greater value beyond our own production.

    Great post!… And Hi! First time reader ; – )

    1. OK, Justin!

      I will take your challenge to pass it on! Thank you for your WONDERFUL response.

      (BTW, I l-o-v-e-d Gateway – cows and all).

      Hopefully, you will read more than one post! ‘Cuz you rock and I would like to hear a LOT more!

      Love your mentors UP!

      The Irreverent Sales Girl

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