Want a Job? Oh, Just Be Perfect
It's not enough that you're out of a job when almost no one is hiring, nor that an average of 1 out of the 50 potential employers you send your résumé to weekly seems to even look at it, much less call to offer you an interview.
Apparently the vast numbers of unemployed folks out there to choose from have made employers so picky you need to be a mind-reading, impeccably groomed (but not too impeccable!), blemish-and-lisp-free magna cum laude graduate of charm school if you expect anything even close to a job. Oh yeah, and don't even think about asking for more money.
The Wall Street Journal chronicles a whole host of ways you can screw up if you manage to actually get past an employer's door-and, note, that list is not limited to "tattoos, bad table manners, sweat stains, saying that you have to give your current employer a respectful two weeks' notice, and wearing a tie at a non-tie-wearing company"... oof.
Per the Journal, "Compared with two years ago, about 20% more candidates interviewed by our clients are not getting offers because of gaffes made due to their high anxiety," says Dave Campeas, president and chief executive officer of PrincetonOne, an executive-search firm in Skillman, N.J.
Yet I get the feeling that if you down a beer before your interview to ease your nerves, they won't like that either. And don't you dare sweat.
Jen Doll was the devil-may-care managing editor at Radar magazine when, in October of 2008, her world changed completely. The great media apocalypse began, and all at once, her magazine was no more. Though she landed a job at OK!—where she learned more than she ever wanted to know about Angelina Jolie, Britney Spears, and Paula Abdul—she was laid off (again) in May.With her newfound freedom, Jen started YourUnemployedDaughter.com, musings from “a formerly high-powered media exec.” She also chronicles her thoughts on the great recession on trueslant.com/jendoll, and she freelances to make rent. Believe it or not, her layoff was the best thing that ever happened to her.