Please! Fill in my blank.
The "fun" of Job Hunting
Occasionally, there are instances which make job hunting a… ummm…how would you say this…ahhh… knee-slapping-funny calamity. I mean, really… You sit at your desk for hours… sifting through job boards on the web (their numbers are legion): Monster, Sologig, Dice, Career Builder, Job.com, Simply Hired, TheLadders… and on and on it goes -many of them repeating the same jobs over and over again. You send in your re-tweaked resume (to better match the job description) and the obligatory cover letter (reeking of overstated qualifications to match the infinite-list of job qualification requirements from the perspective employer) and you get back an email that begins with the salutation of:
“Hello 'Consultant Name',
My Consulting firm is currently recruiting for ...blah...blah...blah…”
So now it’s come to this… the head hunters aren’t even cognizant enough of filling in your name on the template when they send you a job advertisement. These guys must be so frustrated with the thin job market that their minds have numbed their ability to acknowledge the perspective candidate’s identity (aka: raison d’etre).
OH…how humiliating –but I digress in self-deprecating emotives (not a real word… yet, so don’t get your Scrabble hopes up). It’s just that you get the feeling that you don’t even rate enough to “fill in the blank”!
And then, when that golden opportunity comes in the form of an interview, there is still the challenge of jumping through the triple hoops:
- the phone interview (one bad cough in your interviewer's ear and it’s over),
- the Skype interview (connection interruptions will always put a damper on your momentum in the middle of pitching your talents), and finally,
- the all-important F2F (face-to-face for those who lack texting-savvy) interview, where chemistry is singularly important and embarrassing moments can kill your chances faster than you can comprehend the "EXIT" sign above the door you're being escorted through (so hopefully all your zippers are in the upright position). The real key here is to always have questions to ask your interviewer (especially the one that gives them a chance to talk about themselves).
The newspapers state that the unemployment rate for last month was 7.9%, but my networking group and professional acquaintances (along with contacts in the official unemployment office) tell me that the true numbers of the unemployed are well in excess of 20% in the USA. The hard facts are that there are not enough professional jobs being created in this slow economy… and now the so called “fiscal cliff” is about to cascade into the abyss of a politically motivated impasse. The results of which, will cause our taxes to rise and dissuade companies from spending more money on creating jobs.
Although there are many perks to being unemployed (collecting unemployment insurance benefits, playing more lotto, more quality time with the family, fixing up the house, exercise, pursuing being an “artist” (and I mean that in the most complementary of ways…), there are also some residual down-sides to being out of the usual work-force. The one that’s foremost for me is that of not being a useful contributing member to society at large –akin to remaining an unfilled-in blank space. But I remain tenacious in my search and continue to have faith in my abilities to rejoin the workforce… with the unperturbed objective to fill in this blank.