Archive | September 2013

My job search tips

job-searching-career

This is a follow-up to my previous post, My Job Search Insecurities – Are You The Same? If you are like me, and the job search process turns you into a self-doubting, self-flagellating mess, maybe the tips below will help you. Again, not claiming they are original, and I know that what works for some may not work for others.

I think these tips could be especially useful if, like myself, you’ve worked a multitude of jobs and done a little bit of this, a little bit of that, and you feel like your resume is all over the place. Since I came to Canada, I’ve worked in retail, I was a receptionist, a loan officer, a collections agent, a website admin/social media manager and a freelance writer. All immigrants must pay their dues, I’ve been told. Back home, I was a translator and a journalist, with some sporadic teaching experience. As you can see, it’s really all over the place!

1. Do a “Lego” resume.

Every job application has to be customized, so, even if you have separate resumes for different sets of skills, you’ll still end up editing a lot to make them match the job description.
I found a solution to customize my resumes in a way that saves me a lot of time and mental energy, and I named this solution “the Lego”, because you get to build your resume like a Lego toy. Continue reading

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My job search insecurities – are you the same?

unemployed-cat

Last week, I lost my part-time job. It was actually a contract job at a local university, on a project that I built from scratch and developed for over a year, with excellent results.
This summer, they decided to turn it into an office position. Naturally, I applied. Naturally, I thought I would AT LEAST get an interview. Naturally, I forgot about unions, incompetent HR people and lazy department heads. They hired an internal candidate who is largely unqualified, because the job ad was misleading in the first place-a mainly technical position presented as creative work. I didn’t even get the courtesy of an interview, even though I was the current occupant of the job. I wouldn’t get so worked up over it, but I really loved that job and I put many volunteer hours in it.
Now they’re asking me to help with the “transition”, “for a while” (read: hired candidate has no idea how to do this job), and I invoice the crap out of them. There’s still some money to be made from this over the next few weeks, so I guess things could be worse.

Just a short summary of the current situation. Whining is not the point of this entry, and, I like to think, not the point of this blog, at all. What I want to talk about is the inferno of job searching, because I’m curious to see if other people feel the same as I do. Continue reading

Home alone (1)

black-woman-reading

I don’t look nearly as stylish as this lady when I relax around the house.

I live alone. It’s my biggest luxury, especially considering that Vancouver rents are freaking expensive. There’s approximately $400 a month making the difference between happy solitude and roommate hell, and I pinch that $400 from other areas of life that matter oh-so-much less than having my little oasis. My home is my sanity, as is the case for many introverts.
I spend quite a bit of my free time at home, and I love every second of it. I feel like I’m banking mental energy for when I have kids and I have to to say good bye to privacy and autonomy.

Since this is the Labour Day long week-end, I have a bit more time to sleep, purr and be merry. And yesterday was a really good Sunday: no last-minute work for my part-time job, no emails from the editor, no annoying phone calls, house clean, laundry done, errands run, groceries and cooking for the week done. Why hello, delicious alone time!

How does that translate in practice, you ask (or you would ask, if this blog had any visitors)? Continue reading