Menards hiring local workers to commute weekly to North Dakota store

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EAU CLAIRE, WIS. (WEAU) -- Jeff Peterson loves a good challenge. A business instructor who is not tied down, he is jumping on a job opportunity where he would spend part of the week working at a Menards store ten hours away.

"I'm kind of the modern day cowboy," Peterson said.

He is hoping to work management and get on the team that would work Friday through Tuesday, 60 hours each week. Trading a car commute, for a ride aboard a Menards jet.

"One of those moments where around here there are not as many jobs in management or those types of positions, so it's a very viable option," he added.

And in Minot, that is part of the problem. There are too many jobs and not enough people to fill them.

"You hit that labor pool and you start running out, and we have this need, and we think this is the best way to fill it," said John Leonausks, the Marketing Director for Menards.

The oil boom is a mini gold rush in a way, driving people out west for work. Leonausks says it is a way to bring some of that prosperity back to Eau Claire.

"From our perspective, we have planes, let's find people in Eau Claire and get people hired in Eau Claire and fly them out there to take care of those jobs," he added.

The starting wage is $13 per hour. On top of that, a weekend bonus, extra for working in the yard, overtime and meal stipends, too.

"Every way you slice it, it's a neat opportunity," he added.

And for Peterson, he says it is a chance to bring a business experience to the classroom one day, and does not mind making the journey to do it.

"It's one of those moments where there are some retail positions in that particular area, and certainly it's one of those moments where you gotta go where the jobs are," Peterson added.

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