We closed a chapter of PJP history today, as Mitch, our very first employee, clocked out for the last time. He stopped by with his girlfriend Lindsey in the summer of 2014 to buy some pie, asked if we were hiring, and WE NEVER LET HIM GO. In retrospect, it seems like we never were PJP without Mitch as part of our story. But I remember feeling completely overwhelmed at the prospect of having an employee...a person who didn't know us at all, but yet somehow thought we had it together enough to be employers. (And when I think about all this, you'll notice that I don't mention our favorite girl Sydney in quite the same way...though she started just a few days after Mitch. And here's why...I've actually known Sydney since she was only a few days old. Her dad is one of my very best besties, so Sydney knew all the crazy that she was getting into. She was starting college, we were starting PJP...we were all overwhelmed and confused and never judged each other if one of us cried.)
But for the most part, we tried to be on the our best behavior for Mitch for the first few weeks even though we were still trying to figure out PJP for ourselves. Teaching someone else about PJP and our bigger vision wasn't easy, but Mitch is the most laid-back and positive person I've ever met (which ironically, is exactly what we needed in our first employee, even though we didn't know it then). Without fail, we would ask him almost every day that he worked if he planned to be back for his next shift. And he always agreed that he would. And he did...for two years. Whew. As he always says, "teamwork makes the dream work". (We actually all say this to each other all the time and attribute it to being a Mitch-ism.)
I often get asked about what I find to be the most surprising part of our entrepreneurial journey and it has to be this...simply being able to tell you stories about the people that work for us and what they add to our experience at PJP Buttonwood every day. They are all so funny and interesting and smart in their own unique ways and bring a little piece of something to what we do that makes us, well us. We never take it for granted because we know that we are lucky girls. Lucky girls, indeed.