I've recently been reading some pretty shocking and tragic statistics/articles about unemployment. I am so grateful to have a great job, especially during the holiday season. Regardless, I can totally relate to the millions of people out of work. Not only are you constantly being rejected (sometimes from companies you don't even want to work for), but you feel as if you're a failure and there is something wrong with you. Trust me-- I know how it feels. But you must remember that you are one of millions that are out of work and a good chuck of those people are not dead beats or losers. They're just people who have hit a few road blocks and it may sound cliche, but a lot of it is bad luck. Things can't always go the way you want them to and, in the end, that is what makes you all the more prepared and grateful for the future. It does get better-- patience and being positive is the key.
In January 2010, 10.6% of the United States was unemployed and as of November 2010, the number has dropped to 9.3% (1). That may not seem like an improvement, but it's something. January 2010 was the highest rate of unemployment in over 20 years (I'm sure it's much longer than 20 years... it's just difficult to type "January 2010's unemployment rate is the highest rate since..." into Google...) and we all lived through it. It IS getting better.
What I learned from my hundreds of interviews is that you can never be too prepared. Firstly, reading up on the company and the people you're meeting with is the first step to picturing yourself actually working there. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not telling you to be a creep and list off the interviewer's hobbies and favorite foods, but try to relate to them. I've talked to several upper management people in a casual settings, and they are usually just as nervous and anxious as you are. Finding the perfect person to work with everyday over the next couple years is a pretty daunting task. So relax-- you're not alone.
Secondly, I changed something about my interviewing skills before I got my current job that really helped me. I actually prepared interview questions and wrote out my answers. This sounds so corny and let's face it, nerdy, but it really works. You should always have your answers to basic interview questions sorted out ahead of time. You're already so nervous, do you think you have to capacity to also remember why you're so awesome and will be awesome at this job? It's more difficult than it sounds. Practice what you're going to say and it'll make things so much easier.
I'm not going to pretend that I'm the best interviewer and I can get any job I want now that I have so much experience, but I really have learned so much. I've had some pretty terrible interviews and have said some things that I regretted almost immediately (these stories are for another day). You just have to remember that you'll have other opportunities and believe that you deserve it.
Okay, now that I'm done with my motivational speech, here's some hilarious news from the motherland. I found this article on http://www.dealbreaker.com/ (not Liz Lemon's show). Not only is this picture one of the funniest things I've seen, but it really makes me feel lucky to live in a country that doesn't makes you drink for a job... I would most likely be currently unemployed and college freshmen would be leading our country.
Have a wonderful weekend! (And don't pass out on the sidewalk after a night of hard drinking! It's not cute.)
China Outpacing US In Blacking Out-During-Interview Skills: "
While we’re on the subject of prepping for interviews, if you find yourself applying for a gig in China, please be advised that according to the South China Morning Post, “mainland job-seekers are increasingly required to exhibit ‘grey skills’ – binge drinking, playing mahjong and even ballroom dancing – to provide them with an edge in the market.” Several individuals took this advice to heart recently, resulting in the following scene.
Those would be the 4 men who were found passed out in Baguocheng Square earlier in the week, after they’d gone on their second round of interviews for sales jobs at an unnamed firm.
At noon, the company leader invited them for lunch. Eager to impress the boss, they competed in drinking more alcohol. In the end they were wasted. At first, they just sat on the ground chatting, but soon three of them lied down and passed out. The fourth guy leaned against a telephone pole, standing unsteadily, occasionally muttered some words out his mouth and shivered non-stop. Two of them slept while hugging each other and their backpacks. The police eventually called 120. And minutes later three men were sent to the hospital by ambulance.
Passing Out Into The Real World [SCMP]
Competing In Drinking For Job, Interviewees Pass Out [CH]