Steve Shimkus

Senior Director of Sales Operations

Comcast

When did you join the YJC Board?

2011

Why did you join the YJC Board?

When I joined Comcast, there was a desire to have someone from Comcast join the YJC Board. I attended a couple of board meetings to get a sense for the Youth Job Center’s mission and Board of Directors, and found that the YJC’s mission of helping teenagers and young adults get started in the workforce really resonated with me, and the Board of Directors was extremely engaged and supportive of the organization. Many people have helped me along the way during my career and the YJC allows me to do my part to pay them back.

What is your occupation?

Sr. Director of Sales Operations for Comcast

What was your first job?

Paper route in 1st grade; sold newspapers from 6-8 a.m. at local train station Monday through Saturday in 5th and 6th grades; caddy from ages 13-18; retail sales rep and warehouse expeditor for Service Merchandise once I turned 16

What did you learn from your first job?

There is tremendous confidence and internal pride to be found in being able to balance working (and earning some money) while simultaneously going to school. That confidence has paid off in future jobs and life challenges because I knew I could do it.

It’s important to be reliable. Once people know they can depend on you, they will depend on you. If you let them down, even one time, they might not depend on you in the future, and when they need to choose which employee(s) they want to keep (for example, after the retail holiday season), they might not pick you.

Use this as an opportunity to grow up and pay attention. When I worked for Service Merchandise, I learned a lot about growing up from two co-workers who were 4 years older than me. Neither person was my boss, but they were positive role models who pulled me aside and set me straight if I acted like a kid instead of a young adult. I don’t know if either of them will ever really know what they did to help me turn into the person I have become.