Feeling down during job search

I’ve heard it from countless people – job search is a tough process and it can get you down that you get rejected or even worse, ignored. I guess you can say I’ve only just started after a month of unemployment and 35 applications later. But honestly, I never thought it would affect me so much. Just the thought of applying makes me sad, I feel that I’ve wasted four years of my life getting education and I dread getting another student job again but I don’t see any other light right now.

So for all those of you who are feeling down, I wanted to share this article by Meredith Levinson. I try to tell myself to cheer up and I also want you to cheer up. We’ll get through this…somehow.

Life after graduation

I was informed two days ago by WordPress that my blog had its first ‘birthday’ and that triggered a range of thoughts.  Celebrating a year on this blog means it’s been a year since major changes in my life, like moving to England, starting my Master’s degree and adjusting to a new life.

Well, in truly celebratory fashion of that event, the time has come to adjust to a new life again. I am staying in dear England, but the end of my Master’s degree has brought a new set of priorities and desires into my life, with a big part played by the agonising process to find a job. So between writing applications I try to read advice on how to survive in this new world I’m entering, which I would like to share with you.

A very good video is the interview done by Francesca Levy, the Senior Editor at LinkedIn, with author and New York Times journalist Adam Bryant. Some of the key insights from the video is that when you get to the stage of interview, you’ve already passed the gatekeeper that reviews your skills and experience, so you should sell a different side of yourself: your personality. And while interviewers try to pose trick questions to uncover it, interviewees try to give polished, ‘right’ answers making it more difficult for everyone. An interesting approach would be to be able to tell your story as it allows the interviewee to script their story (chronological, by importance of events, etc.) and the interviewer to see how the candidate thinks by observing the underlying structure of their story. Whatever you do, you also have to show what you can bring to the company but in a genuine, conversational way which will actually reflect you as a person. I think it’s a bit like advertising really, companies who try to be too pushy, efficient, cheap, most extraordinary don’t succeed because consumers can see right through their claims. Companies who are genuine and friendly, like Innocent for example, have much better chances.

An article I read which made quite an impression on me is that of Simon Wong, from the Harvard Business Review, which praised the first jobs you have as a young person. He described his experience and how you can learn so much about people from being a cleaner in a luxury goods store or in a restaurant. Perhaps because my first job was in restaurant, the article made me think that it’s a pity you can’t mention experiences which have changed you if they don’t match the profile of the job you’re applying for. But perhaps that’s what the interview can help you with.

My biggest lesson is: try to make your personality shine if given the chance, because pretty much everyone is qualified nowadays.

Any other interesting reads, articles, thoughts would be very much welcome!

It’s getting personal, bad for you Gettingpersonal.co.uk!

I’ve recently attended the graduation of my boyfriend who was awarded a First Class Honours Degree so in order to show him how proud I am of him, I thought a special gift was in order. Since he has already snatched a job as well, I thought a business card holder was a good choice as a serious, practical gift with the extra touch of engraving it to make it more special.

So as any digital native consumer, I searched the web for the company who would provide the best service for me and I decided to go with Gettingpersonal.co.uk. If only I had known, I would have been wiser than that. Part of my decision to go with them was the fact that they advertised a dispatch within 24 hours and that they offered a luxury gift wrap. Although the wrapping was an extra £5 and I knew I could have done it cheaper, I said luxury must count for something. I was expecting a nice box in which the holder would fit in perfectly, perhaps sat on a little foam and fabric bit to make it stand out. But I expected too much.

After 2 days of checking my account to see if it’s been sent, I decided to send them an e-mail to see what’s going on. To which I was replied this in what I found a very condescending tone from Mr Deric Tose from customer service.

Hello,

Because the order was placed at 17:32 on the 15th we began this order the following day and it is now due to be despatched today after 24 hours. Your order was despatched on 17/07 by Royal Mail 48, which can take 2-3 working days for delivery so it could still be in the post on its way to you.

All I wanted to hear was a quick sorry, it’s on its way, but oh no! Notice I didn’t deserve a ‘Dear Anca’ either, which they decided to add in the email asking me to review, so they can be nice when they want to. I really can’t figure out how you can’t make an order and dispatch it the same day if that’s what you advertise for. Fair enough, the time of order was late but one would think that in the morning they make the order and send it out that same day.

And that’s not all, when I received the ‘luxury wrapping’ was not at all luxurious. The ribbon was cheap and badly packaged in the delivery box so it was all wrinkled in a very ugly way (I expected wrinkles but not like that). The box was one of those £1 boxes from Clintons and the wrapping paper was awful. So I rewrapped it in another paper and fitted a nice luxurious ribbon to it.

Long story short, I’ve had enough of getting personal with this site. No more again!