Almost 2 years ago, Matthew and Andrew started their first official paid job delivering the weekly papers. Officially, it was Matthew who had the job as Andrew was still to young but they shared the route and the money. I used to do the delivery with them for the 1st year…
They started in Spring and their first winter, they wanted to know whether they had to continue delivering over the winter, guess they didn’t think of that when they started So they have chugged along with their paper delivery. This fall, Matthew decided that he didn’t want to deliver the papers anymore and complained about have to stuff the newspaper with flyers(his excuse). They did get paid extra for stuffing the papers but just didn’t like doing it and complaining that that was not part of his job description. How do you teach a 12 year old that with each job, there are things that they have to do that wasn’t part of the job description…. I told him that I didn’t have any control over this and if he had a problem with it, he should call the person in charge. So, he finally did and told him what he thought. In the last few weeks, I have noticed that they have not had to stuff the newspapers with flyers….
In the meantime, he has kept on complaining and threatening to quit. I told him that he can’t quit on the spur of the moment. He had to either find a replacement of give them at least 2 weeks notice. I also told them that they have to find another means of income before he could quit. That was a really a tough thing for me to say considering he is only 12. I was torn, being 12, he doesn’t really need a job but at the same time, quitting and not having something else lined up, what will he learn for the future? Plus I didn’t want them to feel like they had to keep on doing something that they didn’t like.
Fortunately for him, our neighbour had shoulder surgery a few weeks ago and the kids had an opportunity to walk his dogs. So he had another job. A short term position but nether the less, another job which he enjoys. 2 weeks ago, he decided again he didn’t want to do the papers anymore, so I told him that if he wanted to quit, he would have to make the call himself. So he did and also sent an email confirmation about his intentions. So at the tender age of 12 and 10, the boys have quit their first jobs. I do hope that they have learned a few things from the experience.
It is less stressful for me as I don’t have to deal with a child who complains about having to deliver papers every week. When they have to walk the dogs, they are so happy, don’t have to tell them twice about going out. Matthew has always wanted a dog, so this is great, a part time dog. I don’t think he has picked up poop yet though.
Where was Andrew in all of this? Well he was impartial either way. If Matthew continued with the papers, he would do it, and if he quit, he would quit along side with him. He just didn’t want to do the paper route by himself and Natalie didn’t want a job yet!