The reality of unemployment

Selling off what very little possessions you have as a means to ensure your bills get paid.

People saying ‘But why you getting rid of all your stuff?’ Well… money doesn’t grow on trees.

People say good things are coming, but damn… on nights like tonight it sure feels like nothing good is every going to happen. Unemployment sucks and I’m angry with the universe.

Waiting for word.

Every time my phone beeps, buzzes or rings I think ‘this could be it, this could be the news I’ve been waiting for’.

Nope. Not yet.

Still waiting. Still applying for other positions. Still wishing, hoping and dreaming for something to go my way for a change. Still writing essays for ‘pre-interview questionnaires’. When did pre-interview questionnaires become a thing? Because they’re a giant waste of time.

You don’t realize how much your phone beeps until you’re waiting for news.

Come on universe.

I need this one.

I really need this one.

True story –> At my last place of employment, whenever they were hiring for a position with ‘Management’ in the title, they would automatically delete/throw away any resume of someone who’s name sounded like it could be female. My former boss was of the belief that females weren’t qualified to work in management. If he somehow selected someone to move further in the process who was female (for example if he selected a Jordan and Jordan turned out to be female) he’d simply ghost the candidates because (and he used to brag about this very openly) ‘ain’t nobody got time for that’.

I know that when I apply for a job it’s a number’s game. I know it’s not necessarily about what’s on your resume. Sometimes what’s on your resume matters and sometimes it really doesn’t. I’m just wishing, hoping, dreaming for the opportunity and hoping that this time around, what was on my resume really mattered.

Adventures in job hunting: Greg and Craig were impressed.

This is in follow up to: Adventures in job hunting: a hopeful phone interview.

I had a half hour Skype Interview today and it went really well. Really, really well. You know I hate getting my hopes up, but my hopes are up.

They told me that I’m one of the final three candidates. They told me that they were impressed with my credentials. They told me that I seem as though I’d fit in great in their office. I told them that I absolutely would and that, in my completely biased opinion, they shouldn’t interview the other two and they should just hire me. Then they laughed. Ahhhhh, it was a ‘you had to be there’ kind of moment. Anyways.

They also said that my present location does not bother them and they want to invest in the right employee, whether they come from BC or half way around the world. They said when they hire employees they think long-term and they want someone who’s going to help their company grow, and that if that person comes from Alberta, BC or half-way around the world, they’re going to select who they think will help them in their company growth long term.

I try to not get my hopes up. But my hopes are up.

I really need this.

Adventures in job hunting: a hopeful phone interview.

I had a surprise phone interview this afternoon for a job that I applied for more than two months ago. I believe the interviewer actually liked me quite a lot. He said that he was calling to take five minutes of my time and actually ended up asking me questions for a half hour.

He mentioned that the company has no issues with hiring someone from out of province if they’re willing to make the commitment to move.

Halle-freaking-luja.

Crossing my fingers and my toes.

Adventures in job hunting: a kind, but annoying, rejection.

Last week I had a phone interview with a company in Calgary that came up last minute. I hopped on the call and actually got to talk with the Company CEO for the interview. It was a great conversation and I was really happy with the way it went. I genuinely thought I had a shot.

When I have good interviews, I don’t like to talk about them because I don’t want to allow myself to get my hopes up. Rejection is so much more heartbreaking when you’ve allowed yourself to get your hopes up. So, for the most part, I try to put these things to the back of my mind to make sure that it doesn’t take over each day.

On Monday, I got an email from the CEO letting me know that I was not being selected for further consideration for this position. They thanked me for my time and suggested they received over 150 resumes for the position and have now chosen their final five candidates and I was not one of them.

I genuinely liked and appreciate this company and how they were conducting their hiring process, so I decided to email them back.

I thanked them for their time, told them I appreciated the opportunity and that I hope they find the candidate who will bring the most value to their office. It was all very professional, very kind.

I run into so much bullshit and so much nonsense in job hunting that when I stumble upon a hiring process that’s actually straight forward and proper, I desire to let said company know.

I wasn’t expecting a response. I really, genuinely just wanted them to know that I appreciated the consideration.

Later on Monday I received a response from the CEO thanking me for the kind email. Something she said, that I wasn’t expecting, was ‘You were in our top 10 but seeing as you’re not local, we weren’t able to consider you any further’.

Basically… you don’t live in Calgary… so even if you were the best for the job, we’re not considering you.

It sucks.

I told them I was willing to move. I told them my motivations to move. I cannot be the first person in the entire world trying to find a job in a new place… can I? (I say this facetiously)

Thinking out loud.

I applied for a job that I’m perfectly qualified for, suited for, could rock better than any other candidate on the planet, and I know that. This job wouldn’t just be a job to bide time, this would be a career move. A career move that could open up some serious opportunities for me moving forward.

This job is in Calgary. I am in British Columbia. I am more than willing to move, and wanting to move.

The HR Manager responded to my resume submission with an email that contained her name and email address in it and a note that says “In the meantime, please feel free to contact me with any questions you might have”.

It wasn’t a LinkedIn Automated response, or message. It was taking the time to send me an email response stating they received my resume.

Would it be bothering her if replied to her email (resubmitting my resume in the email so she knows what candidate I am based in the email alone) letting her know my desire and willingness to move? Would that come across as needy? Is there any way that makes me look bad? I can see the benefits to doing so, but I am not allowing myself to do it because I’m worried it will make my application look bad and that I should just let go and let be what be…

Should I email her? Should I leave it alone?

Adventures in job hunting: they called the wrong candidate.

When I answer the phone, if it’s a number that I do not recognize, I won’t identify myself upon answering, I’ll simply say ‘Hello’. There’s a lot of reasons for this, but bottom line is if I don’t know them and I don’t know how they get my number, I’m certainly not telling them who I am.

At 7:00 o clock this morning my phone started ringing. Typically, I’ll look before answering, but sometimes I make questionable decisions first thing in the morning.

‘Good Morning this is Jessica calling from ‘X Company’, I was hoping now was a good time to have a quick chat and ask you some questions about your application.’ The woman said.

Oh, yeah. Since I applied for a position with ‘X Company’ last week, I just assumed they were calling candidates with resumes they liked and asking a few questions.

Questions she asked were simple. Things along the lines of ‘So why did you apply for this position?’ and ‘What is your salary expecations for this position?’ and ‘What do you like about X Company?’

They were easily answered and we were about five minutes into the conversation when she said ‘So Holly, can you tell me a little about your experience with Y Company?’

I was confused.

Holly?

Y Company?

Huh?

She’d never actually acknowledged my name. She’d never actually said who she was calling for, or looking for. She simply just said ‘Hi I’m Jessica’ an then started into it.

‘I think there’s a mistake here’, I said.

‘Oh?’ She questioned.

‘I’ve never worked for Y Company’, I said.

‘Oh, Holly, it’s listed on your resume as experience for the past four years’. She started sounding suspicious.

‘My name isn’t Holly.’ I said.

‘What?’ She asked

‘My name’s not Holly and I’ve never worked at Y Company’ I said.

‘What?’ She asked again. ‘Am I speaking to Holly [Insert Last Name Here]?’

‘No. My name is Vee [Insert last name here]’ I responded.

The woman seem to become frantic and scared at this point. She began questioning me as to why I never told her my name. She didn’t take too kindly to my reminding her that she phoned me and she never acknowledged who she was calling so I just presumed in phoning my phone number she was looking to speak with me.

She then said ‘It’s really unprofessional to not acknowledge yourself when you answer the phone’.

I apologized for not acknowledging my name when I answered the phone and then I politely said that as it was my phone number, I again presumed that she was just calling for me. As I applied for this position she was speaking of, I had no reason to think she wasn’t calling for me.

She then, reluctantly, apologized for the confusion. I could tell that she didn’t really want to though.

I suggested that she could use my answers for my own application and that she must have my application there, in her candidates pool and that I hoped the phone call could bring value towards my application.

She said ‘Thanks for your time, we’ll be in touch in a few days with respect to your application’.

When she hung up I had an inkling that I was never going to hear from this company again. Just her tone and the way she spoke, I have a feeling that, though she was the one who messed up, this was counting as a strike against me.

Sure enough, about 30 minutes later I got generic rejection email that said ‘Thank you for your application. X Company has moved on to the next round of the application process and your application is not being considered at this time. Please feel free to apply for future positions on our website ———————.com.’

Welp.

Saw that one coming.

Onto the next, I guess.

I FINALLY GOT PAID.

Please excuse the caps. I’m just THAT excited.

In follow up to ‘The Downsides to Consulting‘, I finally got paid. It didn’t come in time for Black Friday, which was a huge bummer. I wanted to use the money to buy some Christmas presents for some people in my life for cheaper than they would inevitably be this week, but nevertheless, I still got paid!

Ironically (not ironically, more like coincidentally) the money came today because of the fact that they have another project request for me today.

‘Okay, I’ll pay you now because I need something from you again.’

It can, at times, be a very vicious circle.

If you’re freelancing/consulting, please don’t be afraid to stand up for yourself. If you do the work, you deserve to get paid. Don’t let people delay payment, give excuses, prolong things.

Like mentioned in the comments of my last post about this subject, a person would never leave a hair salon without paying for the services they just had done, whether it cut, dyed or styled. So, a person should not take over a month to pay an invoice for the work you complete for them for a project.

Stand your ground.

Your value is mighty. You got this.

Starting in January

I’ve thought a lot about it and one of the things that I would like to do, starting in January, is a series (or maybe a one off depending on who wants to participate or not) about careers. What is your career? How’d you land in your current role? What drew you to the industry? What is your education? What are the requirements to do what you do?

If anyone would like to take part, and be my first guinea pig for the series please email me at millenniallifecrisis12@gmail.com.

Whether you have a relatively common job, such as a teacher or a nurse, or a relatively uncommon job, such as a Biochemical Engineer or the Travel Agent for the British Royals, or anything in between, I’d love to hear about it.

FYI: The series (or one off) won’t give away any specifics, like the name of your employer, I just want to do a series on careers and what people do to achieve them.

Update: I’ve gotten a lot of responses since posting this! More than I ever thought I’d get. It might take me a couple of days to get back to you. But there are some pretty cool people with some pretty cool jobs that I look forward to sharing more about in January!

I’ve you’ve sent me an email, I will send you one back, I promise! It might just take me a day or two!