Unemployment and job-hunting are sent from the devil. I’m convinced that Satan and Satan only could have devised such an ingenious method, and it is perfectly brilliant, to sap people of there soul and self-dignity.
You begin in earnest and set out to prove your worth in the field that you studied in school. Sending out resume’s and follow-up emails your met with something of an invisible wall. Human Resource departments see that they’re in a buyer’s market and have almost uniformly adopted a hire slow method. It’s either that or hire a friend. So you wait and while your responses roll in at a glacial pace you slowly realize that this will not be the cakewalk envisioned during your naïve days, “happy days” will be how they are uttered before too long. You go through 15 different resume’ iterations and do your best to hone your introductory letter so that it strikes the pitch perfect balance between ambition, confidence, and quiet dignified desperation.
You’re told to network and meet industry leaders but the question no one answers is when, from nine to five whoever you should be talking to is probably at work dealing with real problems besides you trying to nudge them in the direction of putting you on at their nine to five. Of course after five you can network with them at lounges and the like but how are you going to afford all those drinks, you don’t have a job loser or if you do have a job it’s the kind of job that demands overtime in order for you to hobnob with the salaried folk. This leaves aside the fact that there is nothing people despise more than another person’s problems. You think your successful job holding friends don’t cringe every time you pop up in their inboxes? They know what you want and they can’t really help you now. You network anyway though because the only people you know with jobs got them through knowing someone else, someone who you don’t know personally of course.
This is before you even get into an interview room. Where employers act as if you have job offers falling out of your pockets and you just live to waste people’s money being hired and trained for a job so you can jump ship and go somewhere else. You get asked awkward but obvious questions, “Why mortgages when your major was Government?, because I couldn’t find a position in my field duh.” is what you want to say but that’s wrong because then they know that you harbor illusions of doing something actually meaningful with your life and there’s nothing that makes management more skittish than dreams and illusions of grandeur. You’re expected to be a company person. Quietly making widgets until retirement. All that critical thinking you’re indoctrinated with in University is seriously frowned upon in the corporate world. So you give them the “right” answer but it sounds wooden and stilted coming out of your mouth because you don’t believe it yourself. The interview continues in this fashion until it mercifully ends and then you begin the waiting game … again.