Golden Opportunity

Cody Teets - Author

“There’s no such thing as a dead end job.
Whether your first job or one of transition, discover how to build your career with necessary “real life” skills. See how others have found their personal path to success through inspiring stories that just might shift your perspective!”

Cody Teets

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RMHC

Ronald McDonald House Charities

Profits from the sale of this book are being donated to Ronald McDonald House Charities.

About book

Jay Leno

Hired in 1966

“Something that always impressed me about McDonald’s was that everybody in the company had come up through the company… ”

“Promoting from within is a lesson I took with me from McDonald’s to The Tonight Show.”

“There are a few ways that working there left a big impression on me. One of my favorite stories…”

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About the book

Golden Opportunity is a myth-busting collection of 44 profiles of people who went from flipping burgers to building remarkable careers in business, the arts, politics, science, the military, and sports.

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Who’s in the Book

Fatima Poggi - Hired 2009 - McJobs

Fatima Poggi

“All the people at McDonald’s treated me like family and told me if I ever needed anything, they would be there.”

Eddie Davenport - Hired 2003 - McJobs

Eddie Davenport

“You can pursue a dream at whatever stage of life you’re in.”

Majasyn Turner - Hired 2002 - McJobs

Majasyn Turner

“It isn’t all about the numbers, it’s also about what you bring to the table.”

Charles L. Broughton - Hired 1997 - McJobs

Charles L. Broughton

“I could go work in any industry in any business and succeed just because of the skills and the foundation that McDonald’s has taught me.”

Travis Heriaud - Hired 1995 - McJobs

Travis Heriaud

“Being a franchisee is like being a small-business owner but at the same time being part of a global brand.”

Karen Wells - Hired 1992 - McJobs

Karen Wells

“As big as McDonald’s is, you get a feeling that it’s a very large family.”

Alma Anguiano - Hired 1992 - McJobs

Alma Anguiano

“Life is full of roadblocks. The challenge is figuring out how to clear those roadblocks, but there is always a way.”

Jerry W. Hairston, Jr. - Hired 1991 - McJobs

Jerry W. Hairston, Jr.

“No matter what you want to do in life, you’ve got put all your effort into it.”

Kyong Kapalczynski - Hired 1989 - McJobs

Kyong Kapalczynski

“I’m going to show them what I can do.”

Stephanie Oliver-Greene - Hired 1986 - McJobs

Stephanie Oliver-Greene

“It’s not about the burgers and fries anymore. It’s about changing and enriching people’s lives.”

Wendy Clark - Hired 1985 - McJobs

Wendy Clark

“The biggest lesson I learned about being a good leader was that it’s not about me, it’s about the team.”

LTC Michael D. Grice, USMC - Hired 1983 - McJobs

LTC Michael D. Grice, USMC

“I learned that success meant being the person who requires the least managing. It’s what I teach my officers, my Marines, and the people I work with.”

Laurieann Gibson - Hired 1983 - McJobs

Laurieann Gibson

“For a long time, no one ever knew about my humble beginnings. Now it’s something I like to tell people.”

Susan Singleton - Hired 1982 - McJobs

Susan Singleton

“Parents who bring their kids into our restaurants are often surprised when we don’t automatically hire everybody who walks in.”

Marlene González - Hired 1982 - McJobs

Marlene González

“I learned from being a restaurant manager to be persistent and consistent. There are no shortcuts and no mysteries to it.”

Bridgett Freeman - Hired 1981 - McJobs

Bridgett Freeman

“People have to learn to be successful. You have to help them understand how they can take an average job and turn it into an opportunity.”

Jeffrey P. Bezos - Hired 1980 - McJobs

Jeffrey P. Bezos

“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!”

Cody Teets - Hired 1980 - McJobs

Cody Teets

“Shoot for the moon. Even if you fall short, you will land among the stars.”

Diana Thomas - Hired 1979 - McJobs

Diana Thomas

“I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t learning something new.”

Mindy Bloom - Hired 1979 - McJobs

Mindy Bloom

“Just like working on crew at a restaurant, at the Ronald McDonald House it’s a team effort.”

Michael A. Smerconish - Hired 1978 - McJobs

Michael A. Smerconish

“If I were in college admissions, I would have a lot more respect for a person who had punched a clock, and learned how to rotate stock than someone who had a glamorous internship.”

Ajay K. Patel - Hired 1978 - McJobs

Ajay K. Patel

“The culture of the company and the attitude of America is that where you came from doesn’t define who you are.”

Leo Lopez - Hired 1978

Leo Lopez

“My grandfather would often talk to me about America and the opportunity it offered anyone who worked hard.”

Carla Harris - Hired 1978

Carla Harris

“There is no such thing as a dead-end job. It’s what you take away from it that adds value.”

Janice L. Fields - Hired 1978 - McJobs

Janice L. Fields

“Had it not been for the kind words of a stranger, my career might have been quite different.”

Danitra Barnett - Hired 1978 - McJobs

Danitra Barnett

“I learned to hire people who are different from me, who have different skills, and yes, who are more intelligent than I am. I make better decisions as a result.”

Rick Colón - Hired 1977 - McJobs

Rick Colón

“The day I came home and told my father I got promoted to manager, he beamed with pride. ‘You’ve really made it. You’re a success!.’”

James Collins - Hired 1976 - McJobs

James Collins

“Do good when no one else is watching because you never know where your blessings are going to come from.”

Leroy Chiao, PhD - Hired 1976 - McJobs

Leroy Chiao, PhD

“My experiences at McDonald’s have translated into almost anything I’ve done.”

Ed Sanchez - Hired 1974 - McJobs

Ed Sanchez

“The day I came home with a bigger paycheck than my stepfather’s, he changed his tune. ‘Wow! You really can make a career out of this.’”

Ana Madan - Hired 1974 - McJobs

Ana Madan

“One of my biggest challenges is keeping alive in my children the family tradition of working as hard as you can to take advantage of the opportunity we have had.”

Andie MacDowel - Hired 1974 - McJobs

Andie MacDowell

“Working at McDonald’s was my independence—the freedom of not having to ask anybody for money.”

Andrew Dornenburg - Hired 1974 - McJobs

Andrew Dornenburg

“It may have been Filet-O-Fish and fries at the time, the lesson was the same: it had to be hot, and it had to represent your best effort.”

Drew Nieporent - Hired 1972 - McJobs

Drew Nieporent

“Seeing McDonald’s on the resumes of applicants would be a huge plus.”

Steve Plotkin - Hired - 1969 - McJobs

Steve Plotkin

“We are always developing our people and moving them up the ladder, creating the next generation of leaders.”

Don Armstrong - Hired 1969 - McJobs

Don Armstrong

“Each of the owner/operators I worked for influenced me in a significant way.”

Marcia L. Fudge - Hired 1967 - McJobs

Marcia L. Fudge

“Decent work is never beneath anybody.”

Andrew H. Card, Jr. - Hired 1967 - McJobs

Andrew H. Card, Jr.

“McDonald’s was a great equalizer—wealthy and poor, black and white stood in the same lines and sat at the same booths.”

Henry Thomas - Hired 1966 - McJobs

Henry “Hank” Thomas

“They wouldn’t let him operate the register, so he bought the restaurant.”

Jay Leno - Tonight Show - Hired 1966 - McJobs

Jay Leno

“Promoting from within is a lesson I took with me from McDonald’s to The Tonight Show.”

Frank J. Sandoval - Hired 1965 - McJobs

Frank J. Sandoval

“I was only nineteen years old and already managing a busy restaurant.”

Phillip E. Rosner, PhD - Hired 1959 - McJobs

Phillip E. Rosner, PhD

“Dignity came from what you did, not where you worked.”

James McGovern - Hired 1956 - McJobs

James McGovern

“At fifteen, you’re not really exposed to the world and dealing with people like Ray Kroc you grow up quick.”

Lester E. Stein, Jr. - Hired 1955 - McJobs

Lester E. Stein, Jr.

“Great leaders know they’re in the spotlight all the time and constantly act as role models.”

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Cody Teets

CODY R. TEETS began her remarkable career in 1980 at a McDonald’s restaurant in Denver, Colorado. Today she is vice president and general manager of the Rocky Mountain Region for McDonald’s USA, responsible for nearly 800 restaurants.

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