Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Job Hunting - Part Two

Company That Makes Binding Product For Businesses Or Hobbyists (aka UniBind)

Public Relations Specialist Needed, $40 - $45K Okay, I found this one on-line and applied three times. Finally got a phone call about an interview. Granted, I was in the car on the cell phone, but she had one of those high, nasally, valley girl voices that only her closest friends and mother could understand. I’ll make this one short because my blood boils anew every time I think of it.

This cute little Asian girl, about eleven years old, wearing flip-flops, a long tie-dyed skirt and a graphic tee shirt comes to get me for the interview. She introduces herself as Bee, the HR Manager and Corporate Recruiter. And I thought it was “Take Your Daughter To Work Day.”

First, I’m taken to meet Matt Coors, a department manager who is actually a frustrated wannabe horror writer and gives off a generally unhappy vibe altogether. The interview seems more of an argument with him telling me rudely what he sure my limitations are, and trying to get me to give up my media contacts. However, they may consider me if I’ll take half of what they offered in salary.

Then I got pulled back to Bee’s office where I was grilled about my years of freelance work, and the inevitable question of whether or not I’d want to come to a job every day when I’ve freelanced so long. I got real. “Well, Bee, as you know most companies in Atlanta will not want to hire a PR person who is over 25 years old. That’s why I freelance and ghostwrite.”

She nodded knowingly and said, “That’s true, but you look like you still get around pretty good for your age.” I was speechless. Yes. How do you answer that? Gee, I hope no one trips over the walker and portable oxygen tank I left in the hall. Then she added, “And as long as you can still get around and get out and do things, I think you should.”

I should have spanked her and sent her back to school so a grown-up could take over the office.

Temp World

Like a lot of folks, I enjoyed temporary work back in the day. You learn a lot, develop new skills, and you can pay a few bills. The difference between temping and ‘going permanent’ is the same as courting and getting hitched. You get the idea. So I like temping. Well, I did.

Nowadays it’s not so easy to get into temp land. The agencies act suspicious of you, a lot of tests must be taken, then they want to run a credit check and either direct you to a lab for a drug test or send you to their own restroom with a little plastic cup.

It’s been a while since my last software skill assessment, and the last three years I’ve worked at a place where at least an hour a day was wasted teaching a cursing, pot-head, wino idiot boss how to add an attachment to an e-mail and to double-click to open an e-mail.

The first staffing recruiter I meet reads my test results, and looking back at my resume shakes her head and says, “Sorry, I don’t think we can work with you. Your scores are too high and you are too educated.” This is repeated at the next three offices. Well, fat lot of good going to college did me. What if I promise to underperform? Speak poorly? Slack off and take extra breaks?

Most people at the agencies answer the phone like it’s midnight and you’re their bastard brother calling from jail for the 40th time for money. “Big sigh - huuuuh yeah? I dunno. We’ll call, whatever.” Once I saw that I had just missed a call from the temp folks. They left no message. I call immediately.

“Oh, yeah, huuuh, we were calling about a job. We didn’t know if you’d want it.”

“Great, I’m available. Where?”

“We called someone else.”

“Oh, I wish you had left a message.”

“Well, hhuuuuh, we didn’t know if you’d want it.”

Here’s another good one. Call to say I’m available. Guy answers, sounds like he’s snuck in and not sure what’s up.

“Oh, uh, you, uh, like, what?”

Again, I give my name and say I’m available for an assignment.

“Oh, well, um, could you like, uh, like call back tomorrow when someone’s here to like take like a message?”

So that’s what I do. And the nice lady says, “Oh you talked with Josh, our new branch manager.”

Huh? He’s a manager? He has a whole branch to manage? The little twit can neither take a message nor speak in a complete sentence. And he’s got a branch to manage! And I’m too educated and overqualified to work. The dumbing down of America – can this mudslide, or dumbslide, be stopped, reversed, dammed – or are we damned?


Petula said...

Uh, WOW! I couldn't even keep reading after the insulting little girl. What freaking nerve! That made my face hot... then I did see the part about the BRANCH MANAGER. Are you serious? Surely you're pulling my leg and I did not just read that. Oh wait, you said Atlanta, right? BIG FREAKING SIGH!

Good luck, have a good weekend and no more plotting about how to get that silly little girl back for her rude and stupid comments!

The Bipolar Diva said...

Thank you so much for following me! Now I get to begin readig your stuff. You had me at Corgi. lol
I have one named Lola. Unfortunately we need to find her a new home without stairs, somthing hard to do in Oregon! Her back bothers her with the stairs and she deserves better.

Now I can dive into your posts!


Cool Gal said...

Thanks for the follow. Happy to follow you right back.

Have a great weekend!

Anonymous said...

I've noticed the quality of office workers drasstically change over the years, not only in dress, but in attitude. Which is why a lot of chain drugstores and supermarkets are replacing their cashiers with computers...for every good reason. I feel and understand your pain.

Thanks for visiting and following my blog, I here following you back...keep writing - I'm loving the vent.

Erin Wallace said...

Finding a job SUCKS! I've been jobless for 3 years, but it all comes witha back story, so no 3 year search for you!!!

Here (late) for the Friday blog hops! Great blog! Your newest follower. Hope to see you at Dropped Stitches!

xo Erin

JP - The Mistress of Corgi Manor said...

Yes, all you lovely understanding people, after receiving the loathsome intel about the valley boy branch manager - that is when I bought the machete.
Lady Misanthrope

Erin Wallace said...

I'm going to be as non-specific as possible here - couldn't find an email address. I want you to know that I write the things that I do specifically for people who don't want others to know what is happening in their lives. There are lots and lots (and lots) of us out there and it helps to know that. And there is nothing to be embarrassed about. Would you be embarrassed if you had a low thyroid?

xo Erin

Helen Ginger said...

Please don't take this the wrong way, but that was truly funny. And frustrating. And infuriating. And you could lead an uprising. It's hard to believe there are numbskulls out there like that. And sad that I know there are.

Keep your chin up and keep getting around.

JP - The Mistress of Corgi Manor said...

Oh, Helen, I don't think I'm taking that the wrong way at all. The situations may range from irritating to infuriating, but I step outside of it to show the humor in what seem like improbable situations.
That is, I want to bring you laughter with it.That must be the reason these stories are landing in my lap. Reminds me of something in Bill Bryson's 'A Walk In The Woods.' I'll share the quote later, when I can get the book out from under the snoring Welsh Corgi.

David H said...

We ARE damned. Ugh.

David H said...

"[Y]ou look like you still get around pretty good for your age.”