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How to get a job (or not)

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Birdjaguar, Nov 6, 2011.

  1. Valka D'Ur

    Valka D'Ur Hosting Iron Pen in A&E Retired Moderator

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    Hmm. I don't have a driving record, because I've never had a license. I have a Facebook account and also MySpace, but pretty much never use them. It's been years since I updated anything, and there are NO photos of me online. Even the photo of the human holding one of my cats doesn't contain me, as it's somebody else holding my cat.

    I've noticed that pretty much anybody who wants to make money in sales or services has some kind of blog. Even a basic one is better than none at all, and there are some excellent blogging hosts that don't charge. Of course they encourage you to allow ads on your blog, and many people do that. On the flip side, that doesn't help if your primary readers don't like ads and use various means to not see them. This is why trackbacks and networking is so important.

    Example: I shop frequently on the Etsy site (it's an online craft marketplace). Many of the sellers there also have eBay shops, ArtFire shops, and blogs where they showcase their wares and update customers on new items or techniques. And how I got pointed toward Etsy in the first place is because one particular item got featured on the Cheezburger network: an utterly adorable cat tag that I decided I HAD to have. From there I started exploring the site and found all kinds of interesting things, techniques, and am seriously considering reviving my own craft business I had back in the '80s and '90s.


    It's true that job hunting is often a frustrating catch-22 of "need experience, but how can I get experience if nobody will let me get any?" So you need to find the employers who can either be convinced to train you, or who don't care what you did or didn't learn before - they want you to do it THEIR way, so they expect you to "unlearn" what you knew before. Or, as somebody once said to me: "It's better that you don't have experience. That way, you don't have any bad habits to unlearn."

    CivGeneral, please come here so I can give you a swift kick in the posterior. Seriously (figuratively speaking, of course).

    Volunteering does pay. It pays in experience. It pays in contacts. It pays in learning marketable skills. It opens the door to meeting people who may be useful to you later (or even immediately). It opens the door to new experiences - and yes, it may even open the door to meeting women, although I honestly think you need to stop worrying about that for the purposes of job hunting.

    And getting interviewed for a volunteer position? One of my volunteer jobs was for a bookstore clerk at the wildlife sanctuary in Red Deer. The day I showed up for the interview, I was told that the person who would be interviewing me would be a little late, since she was out at the lake gathering some food for some of the live animals we had (garter snakes). Well, the interviewer showed up dripping wet, because she had fallen in the lake. The interview went well, I got the position, and had a blast. That volunteer job taught me many things, and even though this all happened over 20 years ago, the head naturalist still remembered me a few weeks ago when I went out there to take my photo for the "around the world" photography project some of us in OT are involved in.

    Depending on the volunteer job, they may not even ask about previous employment. Some organizations just ask if you can do what they need you to do, and if you're willing to commit the time.

    CivGeneral, is there an agency in your city that matches up volunteers and organizations/people who need them? If so, you should check them out. Granted, volunteering doesn't mean a paycheque. But as previously said here, neither does sitting around not working at all. The point is that you will gain experience, skills, and contacts. And trust me, you will feel better about yourself. There is dignity in volunteering, and you can contribute toward making other peoples' lives more enjoyable or even just livable.

    And temporary jobs don't hurt, either. Stores are hiring for the Christmas season - some places may offer something more permanent afterward, if you show that you can learn quickly, do the job well, and be reliable.
     
  2. Birdjaguar

    Birdjaguar Hanafubuki Super Moderator Supporter

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    If it is a position of responsibility that could involve money, then a credit check can identify those not able to manage their own funds let alone someone else's.

    CG, the convenience store business is always looking for smart people and turn over is very high. Any schooling beyond HS is a plus. If you took an entry level job to learn the business and stuck it out six months or more, you would probably be promoted to an assistant mgr position. In two years you could be running a store. The large national chains are always looking for folks to promote. To succeed, though, the following is required:

    Show up on time every day
    Not steal
    Learn how to run a cash register and stock shelves
    Treat customers nicely

    (listed in order of importance) If you cannot do the first, you will fail in a C store and every other job you ever get. I have two friends who each run, large independent C-Stores, both make over $50K a year and have great benefits. One is Mexican with a HS degree the other has an AA degree.

    Suck it up, take the $8.00/hr starting pay and work your way up the chain. Even you can get a job in a C store.
     
  3. squall78

    squall78 Prince

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    Do you have to emphasize you'd like to stay at the position offered for a long time, with an outlook of moving up? It is holiday season and I kinda wanted to make some extra cash before I ship out. I'm taking all my classes online so I have a lot of free time.

    I don't think any employer wants to hire someone who isn't planning on staying long, unless it's seasonal work.
     
  4. RobAnybody

    RobAnybody Emperor

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    This is so true, whether working a volunteer job or a retail McJob.

    To CivG, just the experience of *having* a job, any job, will make you so much more hireable on paper at other jobs, as well as making you feel more confident about interviewing & getting other jobs, no matter how menial or "worthless" that initial job may be. Although, to be fair, I'm talking more about maybe a Barnes & Noble, or Starbucks, or Best Buy - McDonald's won't hire you because they know you'll leave at the first opportunity. Go for retail, not fast food.

    When I graduated from college, I couldn't find work (in my field) for several months. Like you, my parents were there to help & not let me starve, but it sucked & I began to get depressed & self-defeating like it sounds like you are. The country was in a (relatively minor, from today's standards) recession at the time & it looked bleak. I finally resigned myself to taking a retail job which was sooo beneath me, despite my super-awesome degree which should have literally had people lining up to hire me! (or so I thought at the time, of course)

    I worked there for a while & eventually something opened up nearby in my field. I applied, & because I had recent working experience, had done well, & proved I was reliable, I got hired. I doubt I would have if I'd just sat around not working ever since I graduated college.

    Just showing that you are willing to work is important, & looking back it improved my self-confidence tremendously. I couldn't have gotten my current "real job" if I hadn't taken the retail job - I just wouldn't have come across as hireable. So, fwiw, take any volunteer job. Work retail (even just a holiday position). Work your butt off at that job. And then you'll get a "real job" because you'll be hireable. You'll feel more confident & employers will see that & move you to the top of the stack.

    I know. I've been there.
     
  5. Whomp

    Whomp Keep Calm and Carry On Retired Moderator

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    CivG--I would delete any post on CFC where you've posted your real name. Employers can and often will be track a candidates internet postings. Believe me, if a employer read your posts and links your name to them you will not be hired.
     
  6. Synsensa

    Synsensa Deity Retired Moderator

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    With that in mind, make sure your work email is also different than what you use on forums like this.
     
  7. Birdjaguar

    Birdjaguar Hanafubuki Super Moderator Supporter

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    You don't, but if you only plan on working a short time, then you should either go for seasonal work or use a temp agency where you can be honest about your intentions.
     
  8. Synsensa

    Synsensa Deity Retired Moderator

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    I'm not entirely sure about this, but don't tele-tech support offices often hire temporary employees in times of heightened activity (like a new release or a sale)?
     
  9. warpus

    warpus In pork I trust

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    Ok, that makes sense! I have heard credit checks being done in the U.S. and I always thought it applied to non-financial jobs, never made the connection.
     
  10. downtown

    downtown Crafternoon Delight

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    For retail, I think a hiring manager would be fine with having a guy for 6 months. I don't expect most of the people I interview to stay with me for years and years.

    I think a fair way to address that in an interview would be to say you'd certainly be interested in developing managerial talents and new skills with the company. I don't think you have to say your professional goal is to run a 7/11.
     
  11. The_J

    The_J Say No 2 Net Validations Retired Moderator Supporter

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    ...how do you get a normal job in a country with long, long, long distances without having a driving license?
    Unless you're living in a big city, i don't think anyone has anywhere a high chance of finding a job in their hometown.

    And i'm btw pretty surprised to read here that people are sending job applications without a covering letter :confused: (assuming resume = CV, right?).
     
  12. Valka D'Ur

    Valka D'Ur Hosting Iron Pen in A&E Retired Moderator

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    I would guess that it's also a case of figuring that people with good to excellent credit have less incentive to steal/embezzle.

    What do you define as a "big city"? Plus, the distances aren't quite THAT long in areas of the country with well-defined transportation corridors. There are buses and trains in the largest cities, and buses in the medium-sized cities like Red Deer.

    I am, too. I was told that you ALWAYS include a cover letter, even if not specifically asked for one.
     
  13. Boundless

    Boundless Deity

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    "4. About which competitor are you most worried? "

    I must say I don't like the word 'worried'. An employer, imo, should never be worried about competition, it should just be a pressure to want to achieve better. Fear to me implies you've already done something wrong.
     
  14. The_J

    The_J Say No 2 Net Validations Retired Moderator Supporter

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    Let's say medium sized city, 50K people or so.
    Maybe the public transportation over there is partially better, but here you can only rely on it near the city.
    I've lived long 30km/20 miles outside of a city, and there's no train connection, with the bus it takes 1.5 hours, and only 6 - 19 o'clock, and not at weekends.
    If you don't have a 9 to 5 job, then it's pretty impossible to get here a position without a driving license.

    Maybe it's a cultural difference :dunno:.
     
  15. Hygro

    Hygro soundcloud.com/hygro/

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    How much would a thousand google hits of nightlife entertainment links associated with the person's name affect their chances, positively or negatively?
     
  16. GenMarshall

    GenMarshall Night Elven Ghost Agent

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    In the information age, why is there a need for HR departments to poke into our personal lives via the internet?!
     
  17. Quackers

    Quackers The Frog

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    Firms want to know as much as they can about the potential employees so they can make the best decison when hiring. It's common sense isn't it? :p
     
  18. GenMarshall

    GenMarshall Night Elven Ghost Agent

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    Searching for credit records (Not sure why) and police records is all fine and dandy. But to poke into a person's personal life seems to me kind of an unfair meter to gauge how good a candidate would be. There has to be a line drawn somewhere.

    I mean having a few Facebook tweets on a couple of nights out with your friends, a hiking trip in the Rockies, or catching an amazing fish shouldn't have any sort of barring on a candidate. It's not like your employer would care if you caught a 20lb fluke.

    Oh whatever happened to separating work from pleasure.
     
  19. Cutlass

    Cutlass The Man Who Wasn't There.

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    Need doesn't enter into it. They can, therefor they do.
     
  20. Zelig

    Zelig Beep Boop

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    I don't think those are what are stopping you from getting hired.
     

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