Tuesday, June 10

Buddy Can You Spare a job?

I graduated from college and like everyone else, I needed a job. I started out with a sense of determination and adventure . I went through job hunting classes, learned how to write a resume, did mock interviews, I was ready. I was certain of getting a job with my skills. Then reality hit.
I found an opening at two department stores and dutifully applied submitted a resume: I have a college degree in graphic arts, experience in carpentry, and sales. I have excellent organization and people skills. I am beyond overqualified for the positions I applied for.

I never got a response from the first store but got a summons from the second to attend the stores "cattle call" application and orientation along with fifty other people. I filled out forms, watched a training video, answered the accompanying questionnaire, signed an agreement to let every major investigative company do a back ground check on me and was advised in writing that should I be hired they would require a drug test. ( I was ready for a blood test and full cavity search as well.) I was given a psyche test that had such inscrutable questions as “Can you count past 50?" and “Has anyone you know abused drugs, alcohol or stolen anything in the past six months?” All of this for a part time position in a department store? Needless to say I did not get that job.

I’ve gone through the job search thing many times since. I've tried many different approaches and applied for jobs I know I would be perfect for without success. Getting a job, I discovered was harder than I thought. I was getting discouraged. I heard of one man's quest for a position at a copy shop required him to call ten days in a row and submit to three interviews to get hired as a clerk. It's truly an employers' market.

Adding to the aggravation was the realization that employers aren't as discriminating about who they hire as I thought. I can't count the number of times I have gone to a business establishment to be waited on -eventually- by a pimple faced teenager with a dour expression that said "I'd rather be laying on a couch playing video games that deal with you". Meanwhile I'm left stewing because the nitwit can't find the right forms, doesn't know how to use the company computer or answer the phone correctly. Apparently customer service now means the service is done by the customer. I make a mental note that this business will not be patronized by me in the future.

All I've learned in my years of trial and error is that I have little chance of getting a decent job but I have developed great job hunting skills. I wonder if I could make a living as a professional job applicant. I could forget about working for others and create my own job as a carpenter / silversmith / writer: I'll fix your house, fix your jewelry and fix your term paper. Maybe I could apply to the CIA.

No comments: