I travel around the country, and I meet people who are worried about finding a new job. I understand how tough it is. I’ve had horrible experiences myself. When I was starting out as a comedian, I went to see an agent one time. He said, “We’ll call you if we need anything.” As he was talking to me, I looked over at his trash can and saw my picture torn in half there. He must have thrown it out before I showed up. Sure, he was going to call me. But that’s okay—those are just bad job interviews.
If you really want a job, do whatever it takes to make a good impression. Years ago I lived in Boston, and when I saw a Mercedes/Rolls-Royce dealer, I thought, “I’d like to work there.” I asked about a job, but the boss said, “We’re not hiring now.” Monday morning, I returned. I went to the car-wash bay, said “I’m the new guy,” and started washing cars. After three or four days, the boss saw me and asked, “What’s he doing here?” The car-wash guy goes, “He’s a hard worker.” I said, “I figured I’d work here until you hired me.” And I got the job. That attitude has always worked for me.
Jay Leno, Hard Work as told to Parade Magazine