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A young South African wrote to Garmin asking for a job… they didn’t reply but rather surprised him at school with a brand-new watch and asked him to apply again when he was done with his studies.


Mpumalanga, South Africa (05 February 2023) – A young South African decided that he was ready for work at just 11-years-old and knew exactly what company he wanted to work for… Garmin.

Francois Retief loves the company and all their products. He even spends his time creating his own watch designs and decided that this was the company he wanted to work for.

The young South African drafted an email outlining what he could offer and what he wanted in return. He described his love for the company and how much he enjoys designing watches. Francois wanted to join the team and would even do so at no cost to the company. He offered his services on a barter deal that, after a year of working for them, they could give him his own Garmin watch. Specifically the “Fenix 6”.

Francois’ mom, Michele Retief, says that he was hoping for a reply, “that was all he wanted, but nothing happened”.

The Garmin team received the mail while at a strategy conference in Mpumalanga, two hours away from the Retief family.

“They googled our website based on the email address that Francois used for his mail. They contacted his father – Jaco Retief – directly to arrange a surprise meet-up at White River primary school to make a Young Boy’s dream come true.”

The plan was set into motion just five days after the email was sent.

Francois was in his classroom when he was called to the school’s office. Waiting for him there, was his dad and representatives from Garmin, who had brought him a surprise “hamper” filled with an array of goodies, including the “Fenix 6” watch he wanted.

To top it all off, the Garmin team included an application letter to work for the company but only when the young man finished his entire schooling career.

Francois’ parents were utterly taken aback by the way this “massive” corporate company had taken the time to hand-deliver this incredible gift to their son, but more so, how the biggest gift was not the watch but rather the hope and kindness shared.

“Hope in a young heart seems unrealistic at times, but Garmin proved that dreams still come true and that we must never think we can not achieve our goals in life.”

“You will never understand the huge gift you gave our son in believing things are within his reach. I don’t think anyone will ever forget what you did today.”

Sources: Michele Retief 
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Brent Lindeque is the founder and editor in charge at Good Things Guy.

Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.

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