Here are the Unglamorous First Jobs of the 13 World’s Most Successful People!
President Barack Obama scooped ice cream
Even the leader of the free world once had an unglamorous summer job.
As a teenager growing up in Honolulu, Obama got his first gig working the counter at Baskin-Robbins, Time reports.
Hillary Clinton supervised park activities
Clinton writes in her autobiography “Hard Choices” that she got her first paying job, other than babysitting, at 13, supervising a small park a few miles from her home in the Chicago suburb of Park Ridge, Illinois.
Clinton says she had to lug a wagon full of balls, bats, and jump ropes back and forth three days a week that summer.
Donald Trump collected bottles
Trump, the billionaire real-estate mogul and Republican presidential hopeful, grew up wealthy, but his father wanted him to learn the value of money early on.As a kid, his dad would take him to construction sites and have him and his brother pick up empty soda bottles to redeem for cash, Trump tells Forbes. He says that he didn’t make much, but it taught him to work for his money.
Mark Cuban sold garbage bags
When the Dallas Mavericks owner and entrepreneur asked his dad if he could get a new pair of expensive sneakers, his dad told him he could go get a job. So he did, selling garbage bags door-to-door.
Cuban was 12 at the time, and he asked his dad how he was supposed to find a job. That’s when one of his dad’s friends stepped in. He said he had some garbage bags he needed to sell, so Cuban went door-to-door selling the bags for three dollars more than he paid for them.
Richard Branson was an amateur bird breeder and arborist
Branson, the billionaire founder of the Virgin Group, has worked for himself from day one.
At the age of 11, Branson says in a LinkedIn post, he and his best friend, Nik Powell, started breeding parakeets to sell as pets to their classmates. The birds started multiplying faster than they could sell them, so they then tried their hand in a different market.As Christmas approached, they bought small fir trees and hoped to make a profit off them once they grew big — but rabbits destroyed the trees before they could grow, he writes.
Warren Buffett was a paperboy
Buffett has been interested in making and saving money since he was a kid. Today, the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway is worth an estimated $61.2 billion, according to Forbes, making him one of the world’s wealthiest people.
At the age of 13, Buffett spent his mornings delivering copies of The Washington Post, according to Bio. That same year, he invested $1,200 of his savings into 40 acres of farmland.
Oprah Winfrey worked at a corner grocery store.
Winfrey’s media empire made her the first female black billionaire — she’s worth an estimated $3 billion today, according to Forbes. Before she made it to the top, she struggled her way out of a difficult, impoverished childhood.
When she was living with her dad in Nashville as a young teenager, she worked at a corner grocery store next to her dad’s barbershop, Forbes reports.
Michael Dell washed dishes.
As founder and CEO of Dell Inc., Dell enjoyed a rise to power during the heyday of the personal computer. Today, Dell is worth an estimated $18.7 billion, according to Forbes.
But before he helped make PCs mainstream, Dell got his first job scrubbing dishes for a Chinese restaurant at the age of 12, Bio reports.
David Murdock pumped gas.
Murdock, the 91-year-old chairman and CEO of Dole Foods, turned the company into the world’s largest producer and marketer of fruits and vegetables. He’s worth an estimated $2.9 billion today, according to Forbes, but he grew up poor and dropped out of high school in the ninth grade.
After quitting school, Murdock worked at a gas station until he was drafted into the Army in 1943, Forbes reports.
Jeff Bezos worked the grill at McDonald’s.
The founder and CEO of internet-retail behemoth Amazon got his start working the grill at McDonald’s during his summers as a teenager, according to the book “Golden Opportunity: Remarkable Careers That Began at McDonald’s.”
“The most challenging thing was keeping everything going at the right pace during a rush,” Bezos said. “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.”
Michael Bloomberg was a parking-lot attendant.
The former mayor of New York City is now worth an estimated $38.1 billion, according to Forbes, but he comes from a middle-class family.
As a student at Johns Hopkins University, he worked as a parking-lot attendant to help pay his loans for tuition.
Madeline Albright sold bras.
Albright became the first female secretary of state, serving under President Bill Clinton. She made it into the US as a political refugee from Czechoslovakia, since her anti-Soviet family was in danger from her country’s communist party, according to Bio.
She got her first job selling bras at a department store in Denver, she tellsForbes, and adds that she probably made next to nothing but learned how to deal with people in difficult situations.
Lloyd Blankfein sold snacks at Yankee Stadium
As the CEO of Goldman Sachs, Blankfein is one of the most influential people on Wall Street.
But he worked his way up from the bottom. According to his biography, “Money and Power: How Goldman Sachs Came to Rule the World,” Blankfein grew up in Brooklyn housing projects and worked his first job as a concession vendor at Yankee Stadium.