This summer, the five of us in Sales & Marketing have had the pleasure of working with Jeff, a high school senior who has been extra helpful in getting our new web technology online. I thought it might be interesting for our blog readers to hear what it’s like being a fifth generation family employee, so I asked him to write a post for the blog.
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My name is Jeff, I’m a rising senior in high school, and this is my third summer working just about full time at Hodges Badge. I’ve been coming to Hodges and doing odd things for as long as I can remember, but for the past three years I’ve been doing some real work. I started out working on web pages and e-mails two summers ago and last summer I got a really cool job as we began work on our new website.
I spent most of the summer (while my friends are at the beach) on two projects; Scene7, a dynamic imaging platform from Adobe that we now use to deliver all of the product images on our website , and a rosette configurator that will enable customers to preview their custom products before placing an order. Every couple of weeks I’ll manage to find something really tough which needs some work, and usually I manage to figure it out after going back to it a few times.
Working in the family company is interesting because I don’t work directly for my dad but I get to see him at lunch and at meetings. Being a family business, almost everyone in the Hodges family has worked here at one time. Before my sister went of to college, she spent at least two summers working here. I know it might seem like I am obligated to return to Hodges when I’m done with college, but at the same time I’m not sure that’s what I want to do. When my dad got out of college he had another job outside the company, but when his dad wanted to retire he ended up packing up his brand new house in New Hampshire and coming back to Rhode Island to work at Hodges. So I guess we’ll see what happens.
This summer I began the college search process, and just last week I got back from a weeklong trip through the mid-Atlantic and semi-Southern colleges. Spending a week in the car wasn’t the most pleasurable thing I’ve done all summer, but it wasn’t all bad. I did see some schools that I liked and I got visit my cousins in South Carolina. I do have a bit of an issue with the college search in that I really don’t know what I want to study. In the end, I think my decision will probably be based on what I happen to enjoy that doesn’t really feel like work.
Well, now you know a little bit about me and what it’s like at a family-run business. Feel free to drop me any questions (or suggestions for colleges) in the comments.