Thursday, June 08, 2006

Job Hunt Irony

Have you ever noticed how ironic/annoying the job hunt is?

The "can't get the job without experience, can't get experience without the job" is the rage of the 19-year-old out of high school.

The "can't get work without the right attitude, can't maintain the right attitude without work" is the reality of the I-didn't-choose-to-be-between-jobs group.

Women still have to play the high heels and stockings game in a lot of arenas...but then, men have to still wear the portable noose, otherwise known as "a tie."

Then, if you're in career transition and you need a cash flow job until your dream job comes along, you're stuck in the "You're overqualified" trap.

But then, when you're at that stage, your dream job will likely not be advertised anyway, so you're stuck with the "hidden job market" bullshit...companies who know, or don't know, they need help, and you have to convince them that you are the One.

Now, it's a matter of planting the seeds of a network, watering it, watching it grow, and harvesting it at the 'ripe' moment -- even then, you'll not know the quality of the fruit until each and every lead is (oh, so casually!), squeezed for all it is worth.

I have the luxury to not be desperate for work, due entirely to my rather traditional man who satisfies some Maslow-ian need in supporting me.
(But where in the hierarchy is it?)

But I have my own ironies to add...Me, a woman who has gone through a slew of books & counselors on the subject of getting hired, and who has been carefully applying the principles, had an interview today for a position as an Employment Facilitator -- essentially someone who helps others find work.

Sort of a meta-job.

I'll keep you posted.

Lori

9 comments:

Metro said...

I don't know who Maslow was, but he got it all wrong. The heirarchy of male needs is:

1) Eat
2) Sleep
3) $#!7
4) Sex

Not neccesarily in that order. And if you follow any male impulse long and far enough, it'll lead you back to one of these four.

So to get back to the original question. I think supporting one's spouse comes under 1,3 and possibly 2.

a h m a d said...

Interesting post, I passed and I am still passing through many of this; especially the "can't get the job without experience, can't get experience without the job!" It is so true and I still don't know how to break this loop!

... I still have to find a way to break the hidden job market!!

Lori said...

The 'hidden job market' is not a European thing, is it a reality in Lebanon? From what I understand, in England, for example, all jobs must be advertised.

Here, before many jobs (especially professional ones) are advertised, people ask colleagues and contacts for recommendations...strikes me as a little lazy & cheap on the part of business owners.

a h m a d said...

In Lebanon, not all jobs are advertised. Employers have the tendency to ask other employees for recommendation here as well; I have proof that this is not only happening in Lebanese companies but also in the Lebanese branches of multinational companies!!

Moreover, we suffer from religious segregation; some employers only hire from certain sect (and again this applies to the Lebanese branches of multinational companies). It is awful how people always find something (be it race or religion...) to segregate among candidates.

Finally, when I refer to advertised jobs in respective newspapers, I realize that the competition is deadly and there are always people who are ready to work for lower salaries.

Before I end my long comment, 90% of my colleagues who graduated with me are now abroad (in this order: KSA, UAE, France, USA,...) This makes me one of the very few who stayed to work in Lebanon, yet now I am looking for another job.

Sorry for my long comment. Bye :)

Lori said...

No apologies necessary -- it's very interesting, Ahmad. I have two questions:

How do you know if you're part of the 'right' religious group? Does it depend on the religion of the head of the company?

In Lebanon, do you have such people as 'head hunters' (people hired by companies to recruit top workers from other companies, usually in the computer industry)?

raincoaster said...

You should read Barbara Ehrenreich's new book (the name escapes me) on the white collar job market. She's nailed it; this is a fundamentally insane hierarchy that requires those who wish to participate to partake of the insanity even while it shuts them out. "No, really, I DRANK THE KOOL AID!!! I REALLY DID!!!"

I speak from experience. It's part of the reason why I gave up on my small business column: I came across one too many people who'd been laid off and thought they should be an entrepreneur. Employment rates are inversely proportional to domestic violence rates, and you can see why once you meet enough of the involuntarily self-employed or job-hunting.

Don't beat Mister Master Cowfish. Find a Republican for that.

Lori said...

I wouldn't beat my man...he's supporting me right now.

Gads.

a h m a d said...

How do you know if you're part of the 'right' religious group? Does it depend on the religion of the head of the company?

Well yes, when the company is "monotone," everyone from the head of the company to the office boy will be the same religion or even same sect (depends on how narrow minded the company is). Thank God, this monotonousness challenges their survival capability; for example a sales company needs salesmen from all sects to sell efficiently in all areas. ;)


In Lebanon, do you have such people as 'head hunters' (people hired by companies to recruit top workers from other companies, usually in the computer industry)?

I doubt that this technique exists here. I don't know any of my friends who was hired that way, plus I never heard of this approach being used here. Sounds helpful for people like me though. :))

Lori said...

Cool. Thanks, Ahmad.