10 local stars who had surprising jobs before they became famous
If you ever spent your youth juggling odd jobs like giving tuition or waiting tables, then you’re in good company, as many of our own local artistes entered the workforce by doing things – well, less glamorous than being a celebrity. For instance, did you know that Desmond Tan used to greet customers at The Gap? Or that Shane Pow was a McDelivery rider?
While all of them had different experiences, they all credited these jobs for helping them develop the soft skills needed to succeed in showbiz. Things like empathy, a willingness to go out of one’s comfort zone, and confidence might not be things you put on a resume, but they can go a long way in helping you nab your dream job – just ask these celebs, whose ordinary beginnings gave them extraordinary returns.
Here are 10 jobs you never knew celebs had, along with the skills that helped them succeed in life.
1. Shane Pow
What he learned: How to handle other people’s temper tantrums
Where he learned it: Working as a McDelivery rider
Before starting his TV career, Shane Pow spent a year as a McDonald’s delivery rider. While reaching his destination on time was stressful, the job paid well, as the majority of his clientele lived in private houses in Bukit Timah. Not only did customers tip him generously, but the experience exposed him to a variety of unforgettable characters.
“I meet people all the time and sometimes there are nasty customers. For example, they will rage at me when there isn’t any chilli sauce but I wasn’t the one who packed the bag. So the job made me more tolerant of people and I don’t flare up that easily now. There are times when we are filming, tempers rise and things get hot on set, but I don’t get angsty as easily,” noted Shane.
“I also remember I had to make a delivery to an HDB flat. It was raining and the lift was faulty so I had to climb up 11 storeys with the McDonalds bag. The change for the order was 10 cents. After the customer paid me, he stood there and waited for me to give him his change. I had to put down the bag, look for my ziplock bag, in which my money was kept, and dig for 10 cents. It was just 10 cents! I climbed up 11 storeys! He could have just told me to keep the change.”
Photos: Shane Pow
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