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Sixteen is the perfect age to get started with a regular job. Your child will build valuable interpersonal and life skills while working.
sixteen-year-olds are responsible enough to hold a job without much parental involvement. In fact, you may have to do nothing more than give them a ride!
Best Jobs For a 16-Year-Old
Your child might have already had a paying job well before their sixteenth birthday.
They probably earned an allowance, ran a lemonade stand or shoveled a neighbor’s sidewalk at some point.
Sixteen is the right time for a child to break free from those smaller gigs and work a regular job.
While most states allow children as young as 14 to work, 16 is arguably a better age to start a job.
Those two extra years of maturity can make all the difference between success and failure.
1. Brand Ambassador
A brand ambassador is a person who is hired to work in a retail environment while promoting the clothing.
Think of places like American Eagle Outfitters. Most of these stores require their workers to buy and wear the store’s clothing while they are working.
2. Fast Food Service
The fast food industry is well known for hiring younger workers. In many states, children can start working in fast food at the age of 14.
A 16-year-old will find it somewhat easy to be hired at any fast food establishment. Duties range from working as a cashier to food prep.
Bakeries will hire 16-year-olds to help with baking orders and prep. The teen should have some experience with baking before they apply to this kind of position.
Even with experience, the bakery will probably insist that the 16-year-old goes through a training program before they can begin.
Restaurants are great places to work because they offer some of the best life experiences.
Most younger teens start their careers in dishwashing or bussing tables. Dishwashers ensure all dishes used are perfectly clean. This job is usually stepping stone to a job as a server or host.
Casual dining and high-end restaurants need someone to bus the tables when patrons are finished eating.
The busser picks up all of the items on the tables, and then wipes them down for the next group who enters. Bussing offers a good taste of the food service industry before a teen begins working as a server.
6. Dog Groomer
A teenager can work as a groomer for a veterinarian’s office, a pet store, a kennel or a salon that only provides grooming services.
Some teens find success starting their own grooming businesses.
A teen who really loves dogs may decide to offer a full-service experience that includes grooming, poop scooping, walking and pet sitting.
7. Parking Attendant
A parking attendant does not need to have a driver’s license. The attendant’s job is not to park the cars but to charge the drivers for the parking space.
Some attendants are able to stay in booths while others must stand in the midst of the parking lot to collect money from customers.
Restaurants, stores and entertainment venues may hire your teen to say hello to people when they enter stores but that’s not all.
When I was younger, I worked as a greeter for my town’s chamber of commerce.
Conventions were held weekly and it was my job to greet participants, give them informational packets and provide directions. It’s a great job for someone who is a people person.
Lifeguard training is a rigorous course that covers the basics of lifesaving. If your teen is a strong swimmer, a job as a lifeguard might be ideal.
Have them go through the training before they decide being a lifeguard is the right choice for them.
A picker works on a farm or in an orchard. They pick the ripe fruits and vegetables that will then be sold.
Products are usually sold at a farmer’s market or directly to a restaurant. Read up on the laws for agricultural work before you allow your child to work as a picker.
Babysitting appears on most of the lists for a good reason.
There are always families that need babysitters and there aren’t enough babysitters to go around. Your teen should be able to start babysitting by the time they are 13 or 14.
A sixteen-year-old should be more than responsible enough to take care of younger children on an occasional basis.
Your child can become a DJ. They just need a good feel for what people want to listen to at parties or school dances. Being a DJ is not a full-time gig but it is a fun way to make some quick cash.
Is your child musically talented? If so, they may be able to explore a career in music.
They can audition for a local orchestra or attempt to sell their own music online. They can also put on shows if they have enough content.
14. Cart Pusher
The carts in grocery store parking lots do not magically appear back at the entrance. A cart pusher is required to gather the carts and return the for the customers.
Being a cart pusher requires a lot of time outside moving heavy objects. Stronger 16-year-olds should be able to manage cart pushing with no problem.
Bloggers don’t make as much money as they once did. The market has become so saturated that it is difficult to break into.
Still, if your teen has a truly unique idea, they could try to monetize their blog. They will need to provide new content at least once each day.
They’ll also have to market their blog as far and wide as they can until they have a steady readership.
16. Social Media Influencer
We have a love-hate relationship with social media influencers. We love them because they show us the latest trends. We hate them because they can seem inauthentic.
Your teen could try to find income as a social media influencer, but they will have an uphill battle and may have to wait a while to see any income.
On the plus side, you won’t have to drive your child to work every day because social media influencing happens right at home.
17. Golf Caddy
If you live in an area with golf courses or a country club, your 16-year-old can get a job as a golf caddy.
This mostly consists of carrying items for golfers and keeping balls and clubs clean. They also need to have an in-depth knowledge of golf.
They should be able to provide council on which clubs to use and know the course inside and out.
18. Concession Worker
One of my jobs as a teen was working concessions at a small entertainment venue.
It’s a bit different than working at a fast food restaurant because a concession worker is usually in charge of making food, serving food, taking the order and taking payment.
Concession workers often work alone, which requires a high level of responsibility.
19. Ice Cream Scooper
Ice cream shops are different from regular restaurants. They need someone to scoop the ice cream for each order. It may seem like easy work but the process is very tiring.
The teen must also have a high tolerance for the cold. The ability to resist sampling ice cream throughout the day wouldn’t hurt!
20. Pooper Scooper
It’s not as pleasant as scooping ice cream but it is still a valuable job. Your teen can clean the lawns of people who have dogs.
It is unhealthy and unseemly to keep dog piles in the yard. It also destroys grass. A motivated teen can start their own poop scooping business right in your own neighborhood.
Their customers will be happy to pay them to do this chore.
Being a host is similar to being a greeter in many ways. The host or hostess is the first person seen by restaurant patrons.
Like a greeter, hosting duties include answering questions and providing guidance.
The biggest difference is that a host or hostess also helps to find seating for customers, takes reservations and ensures the front of the house is operating smoothly.
22. Leaflet Distributor
Leaflets and flyers are not as common now as they used to be but they are still out there and need someone to distribute them.
Your teen may find a job working for a marketing agency distributing flyers. They might deliver them door-to-door or hand them out in places with high levels of pedestrian traffic.
An individuals store might hire a leaflet distributor to pass out flyers in front of their shop in order to entice patrons to shop and spend more.
23. Flower Arranger
A 16-year-old is unlikely to get a job as a florist. Floral work requires experience. Many floral shops require florist certification.
Still, a florist or a supermarket with a floral shop will need someone to do arranging for them. The experience gained as a flower arranger can lead to a long-term career as a florist.
At minimum, it can give your teen the experience needed to have a continuing job in the floral industry.
Supermarkets are largely moving away from hiring baggers as more and more customers use self-checkout.
There may be limited options for baggers but this is not a job that will ever disappear completely. A bagger ensures groceries are all bagged properly.
They may also help the shopper to their car where they then load the groceries for them.
I threw this job in the list because it’s a great part-time job for anyone who is crafty and doesn’t mind spending a little time marketing their products.
I started making candles at a young age. I gave them to friends whose parents started asking for them to give as gifts themselves.
Before I knew it, I had a customer base without ever trying to be a chandler. Making candles is simple, requires a minimal investment and is a lot of fun.
Your 16-year-old is ready to work. Help them find a job that suits their skillset while also giving them the life experience they need.
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