Like most college students, Zionsville resident Anthony Yarbrough wants to be a cut above the rest.
That’s why the 2010 Zionsville Community High School graduate is gaining real life experience in owning a business by running a local branch of Student Painters. The painting company hires college- age students to paint and teaches them business skills.
Yarbrough jumped at the opportunity to run the branch in Zionsville.
“I thought it was interesting because it’s kind of like owning your own business,” he said. “It’s a unique opportunity to do something at a young age.”
A junior at Purdue University studying sales and marketing, Yarbrough was eager to start learning what it takes to run a business.
“I do everything from payroll to painting,” he said. “It gives me a head start for a lot of my classes.”
Yarbrough said he has six fellow college students that work for him.
“This opportunity has taught me to be a leader and to manage because I am in charge of six guys,” he said. “I know that I can’t be a pushover just because we’re the same age. I have to be able to motivate them and make them want to work for me and enjoy working for me. It’s been a good experience so far.”
Yarbrough said he was hired in September but didn’t start marketing until January.
“I went back and forth between Purdue and here almost every weekend,” he said. “I had a lot of time to myself, and it was a lot of mileage.”
Yarbrough said the experience has taught him what he does and doesn’t want from a job.
“I know that I don’t want a sit-down desk job,” he said. “I don’t mind driving and being by myself in a car.”
Yarbrough said the hardest part of running the business is time management.
“It’s very time consuming,” he said. “I am trying to still have a social life because I am in college, and so far it’s been working out. I definitely have to choose work over play sometimes. Other times, I have to take a break so I don’t go insane. It has taught me a lot about going into the real world and prepping me for that transition.”
Yarbrough said the biggest benefit to the experience was getting hands-on experience in running a business.
“One of the first things was that I thought of this as just a resume builder,” he said. “Now I know that I can run a small business. I hope to use that to get a leg up on other interns. It also helps pay for college, which is nice.”