Thursday, February 4, 2010

Job Hunting

One of the more entertaining aspects of unemployment is to watch the evolving language employers use to separate job seekers from actual employment.

The newest and most-popular example is ‘recent’. As in “Recent experience in the field of…” Or “Recent employment as a…” Don’t get me wrong. I appreciate being reduced to the last, unwanted slice of meat on a buffet tray as much as the next guy. But I have questions.

Namely, if I’ve cooled-off to the point that ‘recent’ indicates I have, do I still need anti-perspirant? And what are the first signs of hypothermia?

Like high school princesses, employers ask for the moon with every expectation of getting it. They’re like totally hot. And just a wee bit precious.

An auto dealership is looking for a car jockey. For those unfamiliar with the position, a car jockey moves cars around a parking lot, brings them into the service area for repair, re-arranges them to make room for new arrivals, etc.

It’s a nice summer job for a high school kid, with the added perk of being able to tell your friends you drove a BMW M3 or Porsche Cayman today.

The dealer seeks “A self-starter who is good in (sic) taking direction with the ability to inspire others.”

Hmmm. Exactly how do you quantify 'inspire' on an application? Collegiate football championships coached? Converts to Christianity? Former students who went on to become doctors? And is a driver's license important?

Then there are the reams of part-time and temp-to-hire positions.

Like a famous cartoon character, I enjoy carrots. But I prefer mine on a plate, not dangling from a stick wielded by a fickle and capricious employer.

This start-up announced its intention to seek a part-time, temp-to-hire “Customer Adovcate (sic). Candidates’ (sic) that we pursue:

Have a burning desire to solve problems via phone and email
Are a (sic) creative and analytical thinkers
Have volunteer attitudes and always go the extra mile
Are team players as well as independent thinkers”

Before I spontaneously combust, how does the term ‘volunteer attitudes’ relate to your pay scale?

And secondly, isn’t that last item an oxymoron? You know, like Fox News, bad sex and Detroit Lions Professional Football Club?

What do you think the likelihood is that a person embracing both these traits might be suffering from a multiple-personality disorder?

Someone in a Dilbert cartoon once said “It’s hard to think outside the box when you work in one.” Do you read Dilbert?

Of course, the beauty of this is that we learn from everything. All experiences have something to teach us.

And this is what I’ve learned: One, turn off spell-check. And two, stop thinking. It’s just making things more difficult.

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