Cool Work. Very Cool.

At work

Jerome Henry, Crew Member, Cold Stone Creamery, Canton

August 09, 2009|By Nancy Jones-Bonbrest | Nancy Jones-Bonbrest,Special to The Sun

Age: 19

Years on the job: 3

Salary: $7.75 per hour plus tips

How he got started: : Jerome Henry decided to take a job at the Cold Stone Creamery while still attending Patterson High School. His older brother worked there and enjoyed it, so he thought he would give it a try. Once he graduated, the job also allowed him the flexibility to attend a massage therapist program at the Medix School in Towson. Henry recently completed the nine-month program and is preparing to take his certification exam later this year.

Audition: : Henry had to beat out about 30 other applicants trying out for two positions at Cold Stone Creamery by performing in front of 50 children as part of the interview process. His audition included singing, dancing and answering questions. "I had a lot of energy so I had no problem fitting in."

Typical day: : Henry works from 5 to 11 p.m. four or five days a week. His work is a combination of serving ice cream and performing. Signing, dancing and entertaining the customers are all part of his job. They have a list of songs they perform, but Henry is best known for his skills in throwing and catching ice cream.

He said entertaining customers and customer service are top on his list.

Henry estimates he serves 30 to 50 customers a day and sells about 100 ice cream products in one shift. He said it takes about 20 seconds to create the ice cream Cold Stone Creamery is known for - mixing toppings into the ice cream on a cold granite stone.

During his regular shift, Henry must also make the ice cream, waffles and keep toppings well stocked. Cleanup at the end of the shift is also part of the job.

The store also caters parties, and workers take the cold stone with them and perform at other events.

The good: : Entertaining customers. "It's an ice cream store. So it's nothing but fun when I come through the door," he said.

The bad: : When it's raining outside. "Business slows down and makes the day go by slower."

Battle of the stones: : Henry and other employees at the Canton location of Cold Stone came up with the idea to donate tips and a portion of the proceeds from a "battle of the stones" to two local charities, Healthcare for the Homeless and the ARC of Baltimore. The event involved two Cold Stone teams, two stones and two cash registers competing during a charity mix-off. The teams were vying to see who could serve the most ice cream while entertaining the crowd. At the end of the day, the teams raised $1,026.19. Henry's team won with $575.38.

Philosophy on the job: : "Pleasing the customers. As long as the customer is happy, I did my job for the day."

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