Getting the Mustard Right – What does it Really Mean?

What can a group of young professionals expect to take away from a presentation from Susie Johnson? Susie didn’t really know herself. She was kind enough to share her professional and personal discoveries from her 30 years at Paramount Pictures Television Production and work with the Young Americans. By providing some insight to those who are just trying to kick off their careers or open their own businesses, Susie wants the group to understand that getting the mustard right is crucial as we work towards success and happiness.

The widely-successful Susie Johnson of Harbor Springs has found that getting the mustard right both professionally and personally isn’t going to always be based on how much experience you have or your salary, but about building trusting relationships and keeping that ego intact. 

Susie encourages employers and business owners to create positive environments for your employees. Known as Mama Sues to her crews at Paramount, she shared stories of her time spent on the sets of Cheers and Girlfriends, where she brought in fresh brownies each day and regularly served home cooked meals. It was through showing love, respect, and a willingness to do whatever it takes to get the job done was how she got the mustard right.

Working in a resort town with the busy summer season upon us, surely we all have our moments where stress and angry customers can get the best of us. Focus on creating a positive, welcoming environment where your employees will be happy to come to work and ready to take on the day’s challenges.  If you have a team that will easily throw one another under the bus or would rather lie than be upfront to their employer, it’s time to rethink how you communicate to one rather and the tone of your work environment.

We know that many believe Millennials are entering the workforce with big egos, expecting their careers to take off at lightning speed while showing little respect and patience. Other generations see this group as entitled, focused on fun and friends over work, and hiding behind technology. Susie has seen some of these bad habits in several young people she has worked with, but these are things we can pay attention to and correct. Weak handshakes, lack of eye contact, and being late are some of the top reasons why you’ll likely not get that job offer.

One of the biggest things that will quickly damage your work relationships and likely get you fired – lying. Working in the cutthroat entertainment industry, Susie has found that even the littlest lie can become detrimental and follow you the rest of your career. Why should anyone trust you again? Ultimately, communication is key. Whether you are fresh out of college or a young entrepreneur, go after what you want, but don’t expect it to be handed to you. Building strong relationships while staying respectful and classy is what is going to get you far – not always what is on your resume. These are just a few simple things we as young professionals need to keep in mind as we grow in our careers.

-Kelsey Crawford, Marketing Manager at Holiday Vacation Rentals

Christa Rensel