Today is my birthday. Ummm, yeah. I generally take a look around at where I am in my life and count my blessings, look for improvements, and plan accordingly. This year feels a little different.
I’m currently job searching. Since October of 2007, I have had three jobs. Before that I had 2, spanning over 10 years. Company number one, went through a complete restructuring a month after I was hired. Consequently, they went from 130 people to 20, needless to say the last one hired was me, and I was in the first wave of people downsized. Two months later, I took a position with another firm that was 1/3 my previous salaries. All because I needed to get a job and feel productive. 5 months into that position, I received a job offer from another company. I took it. It was a different industry but I had the skill set to make it work. This company had organization issues and product development concerns as well as, the challenge of being a complex sales cycle for the product. Then the economy tanked.
You know the whole nationwide economy collapse that we are still in, but could be recovering from? Hahaha, 1 in 6 people are unemployed, and these are the people who have education and experience and want to be working (me, me, me!!!). So almost exactly one year later, I find my self “down-sized” again. (I wish this was my weight, we could all probably use a little trim here and there, but no, this is another job). There is some comfort in the fact that I was the 7th person this year they cut, and two more have gone after me. But sadly, that really isn’t a comfort, it’s depressing to know that 9 people I know have also lost their jobs and are having the same problems I am finding another job.
It’s been almost exactly 2 months that I have been applying and looking, and interviewing for another position. It’s also disheartening that for every filing position and bookkeeping job that CPA’s and MBA’s are applying for the same position. You’ve heard of a buyer’s market, well this is an employer’s market. They now want education and experience to even interview for the simplest jobs. But they aren’t paying a living wage, they are paying minimum wage because they know these people want a job, not entirely for monetary reasons. We are buying our self worth, measuring our success by our employment status. Working or not working. This is going to be an unrecognizable nation at the rate we are going. Breaking the spirits of the productive people is probably not the best long term plan. If everyone treats the position they land with the mentality of “don’t rock the boat or try new things”. We become a workforce of Lemmings. Impeding creativity and development, and taking away our will to triumph. Not to mention adding a whole new layer of discontent to our daily lives. Does anyone ever want to be known as the “quiet one”?
I’m still looking for another job, but I am being a little more cautious. Job interviews feel like first dates. And truly, they are. I just hope I can find the position that you “saw from across the room and fell in love”. Instead of the friends with benefits scenario that seems to keep lurking in the shadows.