Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Job Hunting vs. Starvation

I don't mind working at all, but looking for a job is the worst torture known to mankind. First, there's updating the resume. If you're fortunate, you have a copy of the last resume you used, and you can just add the newest information to it. If you're like me, and you're on your third laptop since the last job hunt, you have nothing, and have to start at the beginning.

How much job history do they need? They probably don't need to know I was a lifeguard when I was 18, but my job, before I started my own company, lasted ten years. So that's two jobs in the last fourteen years. But two jobs on your resume looks a little...empty. Should I stretch that information with lots of detail, or go further back into stuff that really doesn't apply? What does apply?

I've jumped from the middle of one ladder to the bottom of the next over and over again. I'm a fidgety employee. I've worn many hats. I pick things up quickly, and when I'm really good at them, I get bored and want to try something else. I've gone from waiting tables and tending bar, to soldiering, then electronics and computers. Then back to the restaurants as a cook, then Sous Chef, then back to electronics, and alarm systems. From installing alarms, to the Technical Manager of the Northwest Region for Honeywell. I quit that and started my own Home Remodeling business. It's as if my right and left brain have been fighting for total domination and it's a tie. So...what am I looking for?

It's hard to work for someone else, once you've been your own boss. It's hard to go from owner of the company, to grunt, so hard, I can't do it.
If I'm going to be at the bottom, it's got to be at something new, graphic design, real estate, or something else I'm interested in, but haven't done yet.

A dream job would be a location scout for the movies, or test driving Harley Davidsons right off the assembly line. A photo-journalist, or the quirky but likeable host of a DIY show, that becomes a household name and then makes tons of money endorsing Porter Cable or Delta tools. A very successful writer, who writes under a pseudonym and therefore, never does interviews or book signings...or what I was trying to do before the economy killed my dream, designing and building custom furniture. I had hoped to come up with a trademark signature. Something I could incorporate into all my pieces that told everyone that that was an original "RED MOJO" and one of a kind. Everyone who's anyone would want one, and I'd have a waiting list of clientele that read like the who's who of the Hollywood "in" crowd.

But, reality continues to ruin my life. I went onto some internet job sites to look for a job. I set up the parameters: Not willing to relocate, 0% travel, and typed in the keyword "remodel" I got a list of 100% matches that included, "Film extra" (stand in the background of films for $250 a day) and "Truck Driver" for some local trucking company. Now I might not be the brightest bulb on the tree, but wouldn't driving a truck include some sort of travel? Unless they want me to do donuts in the parking lot for eight hours a day...

Needless to say, it has been a frustrating process, but I'll keep plugging away, and just like trying to keep your big toe from pushing it's way through that hole in your sock...even if you walk funny, eventually it's going to happen.


citizen of the world said...

Job hunting can be demoralizing, especially these days. Sending good thoughts your way!

(I think, by the way, that in the trucking industry they make a distinction between local and long-haul trucking. So it must have been a job where you sleep in yor own bed each night).

RED MOJO said...

citizen, Oh...you may be right about that! still...trucking?
Thanks for the good thoughts, like I said, I'm sure something will come along.

Baino said...

Oh Red! Nice to have you back but so sorry to hear of the job hunting woes. I'm about to embark on them myself, I was laid off on Monday! The resume's done (keep it short) and the networking begins . . I finish up on the 15th May with enough dosh to tide me over for a few months but it's a daunting prospect. Fingers crossed for us both!

Craig D said...


I have blogged extensively about the torture that is job hunting, so (to quote ex-President Bill Clinton) I feel your pain.


comfortandjoy said...

I think you should capitalize on that ladder jumping thing. You know, like a circus act, or that guy that plays the drums on buckets.

You could jump from the top of the ladder to the bottom of the ladder while making furniture and chopping vegetables for some creative culinary concoction (please appreciate my ample application of alliteration).

I think this is a perfect job for you. You would be an international sensation. Or at least a headliner in Vegas.


RED MOJO said...

Baino, Thanks. It's good to be back. I wish you all the luck in the world, and hope you find something you like even better!

Craig D, I do remember you heart-wrenching series of job-hunting experiences.

cj, Very cute. Perhaps I failed to mention an old sports injury which plagues my left ankle, making actual ladder jumping quite risky! I don't know what kind of insurance circus/carnival acts get, but I'll look into it.

heartacheorheartburn said...

Hope you can find something soon. We are about 4 months into a job search. So far it hasn't been fun at all. Good luck to you!

heartinsanfrancisco said...

I have made the exact same remark, that I like working (or at least don't mind it, in theory) but looking for a job is one of the worst experiences ever. And like you, I have done many kinds of work, often leaving when there were no more challenges.

You can basically spin any job history to make yourself more desirable. Two jobs in 14 years conveys consistency and dedication, both of which appeal to prospective employers.

Good luck, Mojo! Starvation is to be avoided at any cost.