Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Job Search Blues

Are you looking for a way to feel demoralized, disheartened and just plain depressed?  Is this your time to feel like nothing more than another sheep in the flock?  Have you always dreamed of going to sleep feeling like you've been digging ditches for the past twelve hours AND ALSO feeling like you've accomplished less than nothing?  Think that paychecks are for suckers?  Then the fast-paced world of job searching in a bad economy may be just what you've been looking for!

A bit over the top?  Probably, but damned if job hunting isn't worse than even the worst job I've ever had in my life.  I'm sick to death of online applications, résumé scanning software, Craigslist, "work-from-home opportunities", going to a place of business to check on my application only to end up in the "oh, did you fill out an online application yet?" endless loop, et cetera.  Don't even get me started on the psychological profile part of the online applications: I am not a thief, I have well-developed people skills, I am equally comfortable working solo and as part of a group, I've got whatever you're calling "leadership potential" this week, I promise to keep my emotional meltdowns at home, and I don't think that it's "mostly alright" to steal office supplies.  There you have it: it is possible to sum all of that up in a single run-on sentence instead of a 150 question quiz.  Who woulda thunk it?

I am tired of the endless babble parade of résumé speak.  Really, is anybody going to say "I'm not very dynamic, and I only intend to do the minimum possible to keep my lazy keister out of the unemployment office"?  Not hardly: we are all team players, looking to enjoy the challenge of a fast-paced work environment where there are no problems, only opportunities.  So, for the next however-long this takes me to write, allow me to do away with it.  In real-world terms, this is who I am:

I'm completely dependable.  I don't care if I have to take three buses, a train, and a carrier pigeon to get in to work. If I tell you that I'm going to be there, I will.

I have excellent time management and planning skills.  I'm happiest going into a project with a good idea of what really needs to be done, how long it is going to take, and whether or not I'll need help.

I'm also living in reality, and realize that flexibility is a must.  The great thing about plans is that you can always make more of them anytime the weather forecast calls for the sky to fall within the next hour or so.

I write real good-like.  Do you think they give these blogs out to just anybody?  Seriously, though: I know when to use your and when to use you're, I can write a great business letter, and I promise that yours will never be the business with "FOWARD" painted in large letters on your window with me on your staff.

Computers are no problem.  I'm sharp with most of your common office software, but I'm not going to lie and tell you that I know everything about every application on your desktop.  I can assure you that I've rarely met a bit of software I couldn't tame given a small amount of time to figure it out.  Even PeopleSoft.  I've also got an uncanny knack for fixing printers.

I really do like learning new things.  Sure, I know it sounds like résumé speak, but I'm that guy who wants to learn how to do it all.  There is nothing in the world wrong with saying "I don't know", provided you then go and educate yourself.

I've got a knack for working things out between co-workers.  Regardless of the job, I've generally found myself in the problem-solver's seat.  I'm not the kind of problem-solver that moans about it constantly, either ("oh, god, do I always have to fix everything?").  I find it gratifying to help things run smoothly.

The bad news?  No college degree.  At least not yet, and I'm not comfortable lying to you about it, either.  I'm very interested in finishing it off in the next few years, though.  In fact, the only thing holding me back from doing so is the need for a dependable source of half-decent income.  It's a catch-22: need the decent job to afford the schooling, need the schooling to get a decent job.  Still, it's worth the leap of faith on your part: think about how much money you can save in the interim by hiring a college-quality guy who made a few questionable decisions a decade-plus back when he was young, "brilliant" and invincible.

Look, I'm a smart, funny guy just dying to care deeply about your store, office, publishing house, adult bookstore, political campaign, or what have you.  That's no lie, and it's no résumé -speak, either: I do throw myself whole-heartedly into whatever I take on.  In no time flat, you will wonder how you ever got along without me, and I will marvel at the idea that there was a time before I knew you.  I'm based just outside of White Plains, New York, and I'd certainly consider commuting to New York City for the right pay/opportunity/preferably both.

Thank you for your consideration.
(and thank you for letting me blow off some steam.  I feel much better now...seriously.)

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