What the Richest Man in the World Learned From Working at McDonald’s

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  • Amazon¬†CEO¬†Jeff Bezos¬†started off his career in retail when he was 16 and working at¬†McDonald’s.
  • Jeff Bezos has said in interviews that he learned how to work well under pressure and take responsibility early on.
  • Bezos is one of several successful people in the US to have worked at McDonald’s.

Jeff Bezos runs one of the world’s most powerful companies, yet his route to success is more modest than you might imagine.

Amazon’s¬†founder, who is¬†currently the richest man in the world¬†and worth $120 billion, started his career in retail at age 16, when he worked the grill at the back of a¬†McDonald’s.

“My first week on the job, a five-gallon, wall-mounted ketchup dispenser got stuck open in the kitchen and dumped a prodigious quantity of ketchup into every hard-to-reach kitchen crevice. Since I was the new guy, they handed me the cleaning solution and said, ‘Get going!'”¬†Bezos told Cody Teets, author of “Golden Opportunity: Remarkable Careers That Began at McDonald’s.”

But Bezos learned more from his experience than how to flip a burger. In an excerpt from an interview he did with Wired, Bezos sheds light on how he became fascinated with the automated services offered at the fast-food chain.

“Now, actually, the french fries raise themselves up out of the oil, which let me tell you is a major technological innovation!” he told Wired.

According to Bezos, this summer job not only gave him an early insight into customer service and working under pressure, but it also taught him the value of being a good manager.

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“The most challenging thing was keeping everything going at the right pace during a rush. The manager at my McDonald’s was excellent. He had a lot of teenagers working for him, and he kept us focused even while we had fun,” he told Teets.

He added: “You can learn responsibility in any job if you take it seriously. You learn a lot as a teenager working at McDonald’s. It’s different from what you learn in school. Don’t underestimate the value of that!”

And it’s not just Bezos — a number of¬†other successful people got their start at McDonald’s, including Paul Ryan and Jay Leno.

This post originally appeared on Business Insider.

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Written by Aba Forson

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