by michele sprague
w r i t e s t y l i n g s
a newsletter for
Kelly Services' contract employees
a story about
an interesting contract Kelly employee
and how working
contract Kelly employee benefits that person
to bed sheets
It wasn’t that long ago when Kelly temporary employee Allan Schneider’s career involved computers, numbers and finances. Now his job responsibilities also include cooking, cleaning and being on call 24-hours-a-day.
Allan and his wife BJ resigned from their careers in finance to become the sole proprietors of a bed and breakfast inn—Bayberry Inn by-the-sea.
“We were at a point in our careers where it was possible to jump out, and we wanted to do an enterprise together,” Allan says.
So in the spring of 1993, Allan and BJ sold their home in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and bought a hotel that they renovated into the Bayberry Inn by-the-sea inn. They chose a location on Pleasure Island in Carolina Beach, North Carolina, because the vacationing season is longer than in Pennsylvania.
The inn’s busy season runs from mid-March through mid-October, Allan says. He credits the long season to the weather and golfing opportunities. Also, across the street from the inn are the Atlantic Ocean and a marina, which attract tourists who charter boats or go fishing.
But young businesses take time to get established, and sometimes the inn’s business is slow during the week. That’s why Allan and BJ decided to balance operating the inn with accepting temporary assignments from the Wilmington, North Carolina, Kelly office.
“We need to support the business,” Allan says. “And there’s a lot of flexibility with Kelly.”
Allan accepts assignments that include data entry and finance. According to Allan, he was offered a full-time employment as an assistant controller when he was on a temporary assignment. But Allan prefers temporary assignments because he needs flexibility to operate the inn.
On the other hand, BJ accepted one Kelly temporary assignment in finance, then found a full-time job to ensure a steady cash flow.
But when BJ’s not at her full-time job, she works at the inn with Allan.
For Allan, a typical day at the inn starts in the kitchen making homemade breakfasts for the guests. It’s common to see him whip fresh cream to top strawberry crepes, and dice ham for one of his many entrees—ham and cheese quiche.
After breakfast is served, Allan spends the day cleaning and doing laundry, which he says seems constant. And he’s on-call 24 hours-a-day to assist his guests.
“The amount of time that is required to operate an inn really surprised me,” Allan says. “The day runs from about 7 o’clock in the morning until frequently midnight. It’s not that I’m running that whole time, but I’m on duty. And I still have to find time to shop, and do things like accounting.”
When he finally retires at the end of a long day, the smell of fresh-baked breads, muffins and biscuits lingers in the air. Yes, Allan ends his days the same way he starts them—cooking. But then it’s in preparation for the next day’s breakfast.
Operating the inn is hard work, but it’s satisfying, Allan says. “We really enjoy getting to know a lot of folks. It’s like having an extensive network of friends.”
Allan and BJ continue to make new friends at the inn, and they’re getting repeat business. As the inn’s business continues to grow, Allan anticipates that some day he’ll no longer be a Kelly temporary employee, but be hiring them to help run the inn.
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