You’re no one if you’re not on Twitter

This week in my LinkedIn Top Headlines in Public Relations and Communications email was an article about How Twitter can get you a Job. I know that I’ve talked before about how I don’t really like Twitter, and guess what, I still really don’t. I think it’s really just because I don’t think that that many of my friends have Twitters. And I feel like Twitter is maybe for those people who like to post way too much stuff about nothing. Every time I get on my Twitter, I just have nothing to say, that will fit in 140 characters or less anyway.

Well, what story was number 1, you may ask? A story about how 45% of Companies Use Twitter to Find Employees, of course. It’s complete with a colorful infograph, and who doesn’t love those?

There’s some interesting information on there, like how 1 in 3 employers decided not to hire someone based on their Facebook. I think that it’s really, kind of awkward that someone sits in an office and tries to creep around on Facebook to find you and judge you, and then not hire you. Most people, I think, use their privacy settings to block unwanted people from viewing at their pages, like ex-boyfriends and people that you’ve decided you don’t want knowing what’s going on in your life anymore, and your professors, and maybe your mom if you’re mean, and oh, the person who you’re asking to hire you. Either way, the infograph also says that 1 in 5 employers use social networking sites to research job candidates, so, I guess make sure you update your Twitter so that everyone knows that you’re still #unemployed.

I had to look around on Twitter to see what people had to say about being #unemployed and I found out that you don’t just have to randomly harass people on your own (like the girl I talked about here), Twitter now has their very own job search called TweetMyJOBS.com. I decided to check it out, of course. Basically, it gives you some “Twitter job channels” that you can follow and then you’ll be notified of new jobs, directly to your Twitter account! Maybe I’ll follow some and see what happens.

Other things I found via Twitter that made me giggle a little bit:
I haven’t washed my hair in three days and, by Gum, I don’t think it’s ever looked better. #unemployment
There’s only so much more late-afternoon Law and Order I can watch with my mom #unemployment
Why celebrate Beyonce’s pregnancy? I sat on a couch for 9 months getting fat, and y’all didn’t put me on the cover of People. #unemployment
Nothing like a little Motion City Soundtrack to take me back to those days when I wasn’t supposed to have a job anyway. #unemployment



[Side Note: In case you haven’t noticed, I choose my blog titles from song lyrics. Genius. Today’s heading is from Ben Walker’s Twitter Song. I didn’t think I’d find a song about Twitter, but by golly, I did! Thanks Ben!]

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Cause I’m proud to be an American

I have been incredibly busy with interviews lately, I think because it’s getting to be Fall and people are going back to school and what-not, so I haven’t had much time to post. Last night I went out with my parents. I don’t know if any of my friends would actually enjoy going to the kind of red neck fun that my family is all about. Earlier this summer, I went to the Rodeo, but this latest adventure is more like a red neck rodeo.

Crash-O-Rama includes enduro racing, skidplate racing, school bus figure eights, demolition derbies, and guaranteed Americana family fun for all.

Skidplate racing

Fans even had the opportunity to take their own cars out onto the track and try to burn out. The winner won $100 cash. Apparently, last year the guy who won had two carseats in the back and was driving his father-in-law’s car. This year one guy broke his front axle and the winner had just gotten new tires put on that day, so I’m not really sure if the money was worth it, but I guess it was probably pretty fun.

Someone lost a tire...

Not only that, but it’s a really good place for people watching, not that I’m judging or anything.

We got there two hours before the show started in order to ensure we’d get good seats with a view of the entire track, wouldn’t wanna miss a minute of the carnage (I’ve never heard that word used so much in my life until last night).

The crowd around us included some real characters and we’ll just say, some people really need to pull up their pants. One of the little girls literally never stopped eating the entire night and was honestly probably one of the most annoying children I have ever met, and normally I think kids are great. The mother also had her six month old baby along. Of course, the little one couldn’t miss the race, after all daddy was racing. And putting your hands over a baby’s ears is definitely good enough for ear protection. Behind us was another family, one of the kids kept digging his knees into my back and almost pushed me right off the bench. And I think I saw a guy who had peed his pants. Not from all the excitement of car parts flying around, but from having a little too much to drink. At several points I thought he might fall up or down the bleachers.

Racing with campers, boats, and jet skis

The last show of the night was a demolition derby with motor homes.

Which is especially funny because these motor homes are, number one, pretty old, and number two were never meant for driving into other motor homes, at least I don’t think so. Because all of the glass, windshields and side mirrors included, have to be removed before entering into the demo derby, the drivers are pretty much blindly backing into each other and hoping they get a good hit. The “PMS, Pretty in Pink” motor home was driven by a 24 year old girl!! Which I thought was great because I’d love to go out there, race cars and get to smash into things intentionally! I mean, who wouldn’t?

The boy drivers kind of ganged up on her at first, but she held her own and was the second to last one to go out. This is what they looked like by the end of the night:

New career plan?

In the ghetto

Yesterday I had a job search break down. It was probably the most ridiculous day that I have had so far in terms of my interviews/auditions for jobs (because it really seems more like an audition).

I applied for a job that was posted online about two weeks ago. I hate applying to the jobs online where you have to fill out all of the information and then attach your resume anyway. All of the information you fill out is on your resume, so it seems so pointless, annoying, and time-consuming. After submitting that information, I had to take a test of situational/what would you do questions that probably took about half an hour. Depending on if I passed this test I would be able to schedule an appointment. Silly me for thinking that an appointment would mean an interview. No, they are not the same thing.

The open appointment times were during the week from 5 PM – 8 PM, a few were on Saturdays from 11 AM – 3 PM. I opted for one of the week day ones, because it was the soonest opening. After scheduling my appointment, I received an email that there would be ABCD testing and possibly an interview afterward. (ABCD wasn’t the actual acronym used, but you get it) I looked up ABCD testing and came up with several results. I was either going to be tested on my physical abilities, take a drug test, or take a test related to some high school. So, I emailed the woman back, she said I could if I had any questions, and asked exactly what the testing would entail. She said it would be a test of mostly situational questions, similar to the test I’d already taken online. Grr, at least I wouldn’t have to lift any weights, but maybe that would be more fun. I didn’t know if someone would be directly asking me the questions or if I’d be put into a classroom, given a #2 pencil and bubble answer sheet.

Yesterday was the day that I would find out. I realized, only earlier in the morning, that I would have to leave my house around 3:30 to get there, because it’s about an hour drive, plus road work, city traffic, finding a parking space, and then walking to the building. Guess I won’t get to eat dinner today. Side note: I get a little bit cranky when I haven’t eaten enough. Oops. Doesn’t everyone though???

I decided I didn’t need to take my Garmin with me, because I thought I pretty much knew where I was going. Wrong-o. An hour into my drive, hungry, hot, and kind of mad because it’s not even exactly a position that I’m crazy about, I realize that I’m not sure whether or not I passed the road I was supposed to turn onto and there are no street signs. I call my mom. Maybe I yelled, a little because of the aforementioned reasons, and finally figured out where I was. My mom loves me so much though that she stayed on the phone with me.

Are you sure this is where I’m supposed to be? I realized I was now in the ghetto. Ghetto, like, houses are falling down and the people walking down the street are staring at me, staring. Everything looked very dirty. What does my mom say, oh that’s right, I forgot that you’d be driving through the ghetto. Really? Thank you, mom, for sending your 22 year old daughter through a very sketchy place, alone. See you later, if I don’t get murdered before making it home

Thankfully, I made it out of there just fine and found a parking spot on the first floor of a parking garage right across the street from my appointment’s building. I still wasn’t really feeling good though, my stomach was starting to growl and I’d been crying. Overreaction, I know, but it was 5 o’clock, I was hungry. I went into the building and successfully made it to the correct floor and office space. I was directed to sit in a room, full of quite a bunch of characters, who also were there for said appointment.

What did I have to drive almost an hour and half for? To take a test. Online. That I had access to from my own computer, from the safety of my own house. If you passed the test, you were to schedule an interview, for the following week. By the time I was done it was about 7 PM, I was even more agitated because I felt like I had had to drive there for no reason. The test was something that could have been taken from a home computer. Besides that, I’m pretty sure that almost everyone in the room passed the test and set up interview – there were 17 people in the room. I’m not sure how many people the company is planning on hiring, but if there were 10 sessions, let’s say, with approximately the same number of people in each one, that’s 170 people, give or take, that they will be interviewing. It makes me feel like, what is the point? The whole process was extremely time-consuming, it could have been done in a more efficient way.

I was done, though, and only had to look forward to going back the next week. Yay. Oh, and getting home. Silly me, I forgot parking garages come out on a different street than where you went in. I hate parking garages because I’ve watched too much ID channel and Lifetime movies, and they make me feel like someone might pop out and try to kill me. It actually wasn’t that scary because it was still pretty light outside. But the homeless man wondering around in there was a little discerning. I knew which road I needed to be on, only problem was that in the section of the city that I was in it was a one-way street. There was also some festival going on, so some streets were blocked off due to that and due to construction. So I saw a sign for The Mall and knew that I’d know how to get home from there. After driving a while, I wasn’t sure where I was and only saw signs for getting on the Interstate going the wrong direction. So, I turned around, and finally figured out where I was and made it home safe and sound.

This definitely has been the most exhausting process I have encountered in my job hunt – and it’s not even over yet!! One of the woman that I was talking to told me that her sister had applied for the same position over a year ago, passed the test, interviewed and never heard anything back… I know that was just one other person, but again, is this even worth all this hassle? I contemplated calling and not going to the interview on Monday, but it would definitely be a job, and while it’s not really something that I want to do, I don’t think that it’d be that bad. I’m just getting fed up with searching for jobs, being told I’m under qualified/over qualified or being offered positions paying barely more than minimum wage or, my favorite, just being plain-old ignored.

I’m ready for this to be over any time soon, where’s my dream job?!

Take it on the run

I have been really stumped the past few days on what to write about. I don’t want to look up newspaper articles that aren’t going to give me any hope of finding a job. I don’t want to get all political or anything, because I don’t really follow politics, even though I think that I probably should. They’re boring, to me. There are some things that I wish I liked, or think it would be good to like, but I just don’t. Things like sushi, shrimp, politics, and the American history that probably actually does matter, but they gross me out, feel funny, and are boring, so why try to like something that I just simply don’t. If I want to read about history, I want to read about the Mafia, criminals on the lam for years, something exciting! I don’t want to read about what has happened, I want to make something happen. I want to create things, write things, paint things, capture things.

So the economy sucks right now, but it has before, probably will again, and hopefully we’ll all survive. It’s like everything else in life, soon it will be over and everything will be okay again. Complaining about it isn’t going to change anything. It doesn’t make time go by faster either, but it gives you something to do in the mean time, I guess, even if it annoys everyone else in the process (hehe).

I’ve got some questions

After fixing your resume and rewriting your cover letter to be absolutely perfect for all of those jobs that you’ve found to be acceptable to apply for, and are actually real, you finally get called in for an interview! Woohoo! It’s both exciting and irritating when your caller ID displays a number you’ve never seen before. I know that I always tentatively answer when it’s a number I don’t know because I’ve gotten some crazy calls before from people who seriously had the wrong number. So when it’s actually someone calling for an interview, I’m always elated, and practically jump up and down after I hang up. Even when it’s a job I’m not really all that excited for, because a job is a job, and practically any job would make me happy at this point.

I think the thing that makes me the most nervous about interviews is knowing that the interviewer is going to ask me to ask them questions. Before the interview, I always do some research, figure out what the company does, what my role would be, etc. I try to put together a list of a few questions, but it seems like once it’s time to ask, I forget them! I wanted to do a little research today to figure out what it is exactly that employers/interviewers are looking for you to ask them, and if it actually is appropriate for the interviewee to take notes.

The first site that came up for my search was Virginia Tech’s. Some of the things are kind of obvious, but they also write that you might not look very bright if you don’t have any questions (yikes!). You should let the interviewer know that you have done some research by asking some questions that begin with something along the lines of, “I read on the company website that…” And you should know what to call the company, because maybe they’re actually referred to as an organization, school, business, agency, etc. Of course, you’re never supposed to ask about salary/benefits unless they bring it up first. That website, along with Career Builder, both give suggestions for other possible questions to ask.

In my opinion, I think that some of them are kind of inappropriate for the interviewee to be asking, but I guess what do I know. When it comes down it, I guess ask questions that you feel are appropriate and are really interested in learning more about.

Oh, and taking a pen and paper, totally fine, as long as you don’t have your face glued to it.

I wanna be a cowboy, baby

It’s rainy and grey out, and not a day to let job searching bring you down. Days like today, I wish that it would just thunderstorm instead of the drizzle that happens every once in a while.

This morning I helped my mom in my parents’ garden. I remember when I was sixteen and they’d ask me to help, I’d roll my eyes and say something like, “I didn’t want the garden, so why should I have to pull the weeds?”, such logic I had. It’s really not that bad I realize now. Sometimes, even on dreary days, it’s nice to just be outside. Not only that but gardening is actually a pretty good workout. And, I got some good photos to use for some upcoming etsy items! On the downside, my nails were filled with dirt and I got a blister. I guess that’s what happens when you do manual labor.

Last night, I got to watch some good ol’ Americana fun at the Rodeo. Who doesn’t like cowboys, fried dough, mud flying, and American pride everywhere? We used to always go when my sister and I were little, but I hadn’t been in the last few years. I wish I had some pictures to post, but the fence obstructed my view or any hope for decent pictures. It was a good time though, and not only do you get to watch barrel racing, mutton bustin, and bull riding, but the people watching is always equally as fun.

Today, I’m going to apply for some jobs probably (ugh), but I’ve also been working on some cards for my etsy, I hope to get them on there by the end of the day, so make sure to take a look!

If I got to choose a coast I got to choose the East

As usual, I’ve been applying crazily to jobs, searching every job board that I can think of. I’m single, no kids, fresh out of college and willing to take on the world and explore as many places as possible, but from my experience, many of job postings specifically say: Do not apply if you are not a local resident (or the new one Unemployed need not apply whhaat??). I’m willing to move pretty much anywhere within the United States, but if there is somewhere that I really don’t think I’d want to move to, I don’t apply for the job (obviouslyyy, that’d be silly). Maybe I still apply for the job if I think it’d be a really awesome opportunity, though. I could move across the country for a job I loved, and learned to figure out a way to love wherever I was. Find some friends, settle into your apartment and job, and anywhere can be called home. For example, though, a lot of the job openings that I find are in New York City, but I already know that I do not want to move there, so I don’t apply for jobs there. A lot of other places I’ll still give a shot. I’m not really sure what my bias is toward NYC, I used to always think I wanted to live there, I guess after my few visits there and some, maybe most of the people I’ve met or know from the City, and no thanks. Eventually, though, maybe I’ll have to put my prejudice aside and take a leap to the big city, until then, I’ll take my chances elsewhere.

Anyway, I was looking up some information about applying to jobs that are out of state. I haven’t had much luck hearing back from a lot of the places that I’ve applied to, say in Colorado or Texas. I’ve literally been all over the map in my quest for a job. I figured that a company would be more likely to hire someone who was close, but I thought that I’d still give it a shot. I also realized that I needed to seriously consider where I would want to live, and narrowed it down to a smaller area that’s still on the East Coast, so I wouldn’t be too far away from my family and friends. So no hard feelings to those companies out west, because I’ve never even been to Colorado.

In my search I found this website, askamanager.org, which is a blog written by Alison Green. One of the questions asked on the blog was, obviously, about applying to jobs out-of-state. She says that location matters, “especially those that attract an overwhelming number of applicants,” aka entry-level positions. It would end up costing the company more money (to fly you in) and time (waiting for you move, get settled, etc) to hire an out of towner, so your application basically just goes in the trash can. She gives two tips to get around those obstacles, 1. State in your cover letter that you are planning to move to that city and don’t need relocation assistance, 2. Make it clear in your cover letter that you would be happy to get yourself to their city for an interview.

I’m proud to say that I have included those two bits into several of my cover letters when I was applying to jobs in Pittsburgh (one of my narrowed down locales to apply to). It wouldn’t be too long of a drive and since I’m not working right now, I knew that I could make the trip without having any other engagements holding me back. I don’t really know if it’s helped though, because I still haven’t heard back from too many places that are more than an hour or two away. Either way, all of this applying to jobs and rewriting my cover letters gives me something to do, right?