Graeme Walker will have worked for the same company for 50 years by the time the new Farmers flagship store opens in Tauranga's city centre next year.
It is a feat Bay career coaches and recruiters say is "rare" but "admirable".
Walker, who is now 66, started working for Farmers on the corner of Elizabeth St and Devonport Rd in 1971.
He was just 17 at the time and getting paid about $18 a week working in the menswear section. Come next year, he will manage the newest Farmers store in town.
"I saw it advertised in the paper. It was the only way to find a job. Unless of course, it was word of mouth. No Trade Me or Seek."
From the menswear section in Tauranga's Farmers store, he moved on to become the buyer and selector of menswear.
When the company started a management programme, Walker joined.
"It was a first of its kind really in that time."
He then moved to Auckland to become an assistant manager in Onehunga and Mangere, before managing the Otorohanga store.
"They were going to close it [Otorohanga] but it still carried on."
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Te Kuiti was the next store he managed, then Tokoroa, Napier, Hastings and back to Tauranga.
In 1997 he managed the Hamilton site for three years before returning to Tauranga with his family where he has been since.
"All of a sudden, there goes 49 years."
So why has he stuck at it for so long?
"It is like a lot of careers. If you enjoy what you are doing and you have moved around as I have, then there is always a new challenge. Every year is a new year.
"Once you get into a profession that you want to do and you love and have a passion for, it is hard to get out of.
"I don't think people realise there is such a good career in retail. Whether it is managing stores or buying or merchandising, there are just so many options."
Walker said the evolution of retail happened in 1970 when shopping malls were introduced.
"It has stayed that way today. But people still treat it [shopping] as enjoyment or entertainment. Bricks and mortar shopping is still very much a part of life."
He has been managing the Tauranga Crossing Farmers store while the Farmers redevelopment was under way. But he will become the store manager of Farmers in Tauranga when it reopens next year.
"It is tremendously exciting. It is an absolute honour and a privilege to be associated with a development like this."
He said the redevelopment will introduce inner-city living to the Tauranga CBD.
"The city is ready for that."
Jenny Minogue, who is a professional life and careers coach, said people of that generation were more accepting of staying in one job for many years.
"That was how life was expected to be. Now young people have more of an expectation that they should love their job and if they don't they will change it," she said.
"They find something they love as opposed to just a job. It is a whole different mindset."
Minogue, who speaks with clients from all over the region and the country, said most of her clients were in their 20s and had decided they no longer wanted to do the career they studied since leaving school.
She said it was uncommon and "quite rare" in today's times for people to have stayed in the same career for years.
"It is quite an admirable mindset that we don't have now. There are just so many career opportunities and options out there."
But she said there was nothing wrong with shopping around.
"I admire people who get into a job and knuckle down and make it enjoyable ... But if you are not happy in your job you're not going to do it as well as you can. I think it is great to change up until you find the thing you really want to do."
Director of The Staffroom Ltd in Tauranga, Jill Cachemaille, said changing careers or jobs in today's times was sometimes forced as a result of redundancy or restructure, which was not unusual.
"However, trying to obtain a new job in a new industry is a challenge when employers can pick and choose from a vast list of experienced candidates."
Cachemaille said it was "quite rare" for people to stay in the same job for years at a time.
A survey taken in the past two months showed 80 per cent of candidates who have applied for roles said they would not be in a job for longer than two-to-three years, she said.
Cachemaille said old-fashioned work ethic, employers who value their staff, continuous learning opportunities, being grateful and appreciative, and knowing they were making a difference to the business were all motivations to stay in the same job.
But expectations from school-leavers and students varied from low to high and "everything in between".
"A balanced approach is best," she said.
"For example, maintaining ambition but prepared to work for it, understanding they will not be the CEO in five minutes, set goals to achieve growth and be realistic about their timeframe."
Talent ID Recruitment Ltd Rotorua director Kellie Hamlett said multiple jobs over the course of one's career was normal and full career changes were "very rare".
"Most professional careers would last a lifetime [ie, doctors, lawyers etc] and those with family businesses that have been created over generations."
Hamlett said each individual was different in terms of what fulfilment they got from their jobs.
"What works for some doesn't work for others. [But] if you're passionate about a particular profession, go for it."