Being a third generation grocer I am often asked if I ever thought about doing something else for a career. For years my response to that question has been “no, I just knew this was right for me”. My parents were surprised when they read in a college basketball program that I said I planned to enter our family business (I was the highlighted player for that game and one of the questions was what are your plans after college?). I found it interesting that they didn’t know, because at age 20 it was clear to me but I apparently didn’t share that with them and they didn’t push me to do so.
When I was pressed for a more in-depth answer on the “did you ever consider doing anything else” question about 6 months ago I started to think about the real reason I never thought about anything else. Growing up in a grocery family was fun! I have heard it said that if you want your kids to follow in your career path you shouldn’t go home and complain about your job at the supper table. I don’t ever remember my parents complaining. They seemed to enjoy it, so why wouldn’t I?
I have great memories of riding bike in the store with my sister on Christmas Day (the one day a year the store is closed), the forts we used to build on top of the backroom coolers, and sorting soda bottles – who remembers buying soda in an 8 pack of glass bottles? I distinctly remember filling the beer cooler when I was 12 years old and thinking how it was cool to be helping my dad in the business, which seems so big to me at the time.
I think some of the magic to having an enjoyable day, week, year, and life is doing what you love. I love the fast paced world of the grocery industry and look forward to going to work every day. The grocery business offers so much fun that I can’t imagine doing anything else!