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‘Unemployment Stories’ Category

  1. “6 Months Later…I’m Still Unemployed” – An Unemployment Story by Deanne

    July 25, 2015 by Lady Unemployed

    I was fired. There I said it. I don’t like it at all. When I was fired in Dec 2014 after having a 3 mos PIP…which in itself was an invitation to leave – I stated with confidence I might add “I’ll be fine.”

    Well it is now 6 mos and one 9 week stint of contract work later and I’m still UNEMPLOYED and hating every minute! It’s funny how when we have jobs…maybe like our health we take them for granted. We say things like…’Man, wish I didn’t have to work today!’ or ‘Wow, wish I was unemployed so I could have nice days off!’ Well I am here to say that I will do my best to not say those things when I do get another job. I miss the work-a-day life…the grind…the very thing that kept me getting up in the morning.

    These days I am doing all I can to not cry (yes cry) continually and hide under the covers hoping someone will take pity on me and simply offer me a job…unbidden by the way! I read the woman from Georgia’s post and agree with her, I am grateful for all that I have otherwise and happy about my life outside of a job, but feel pretty low about not getting a job after 70+ applications, several phone interviews and face-to-face interviews too and still no offer. It has lead me to continually ask…”what do they have I don’t?”

    The general answer is experience; either too much or too little? My last boss was under 30 and was given the job of being my manager with maybe 9 mos experience, I had 4 at the time…yep…I’m a bit angry with that but it seems even though I have done everything I was supposed to for my career path…gotten my degree in the field, obtained not one but 2 certifications and joined groups and attend meetings and keep my skills up-to-date I have not yet been hired. I think maybe my anger, my sadness, my now lack of confidence is leaking into my otherwise happy disposition and infecting me keeping me from truly enjoying my life! I try to enjoy my life otherwise but feel happiest on weekends when all those working are not just like me. Short lived but a reprieve from my day-to-day.

    Well on to more job submissions…darn electronic things…no personal touches anymore…sad but true.

  2. “At the end of the day, I just want to have a job and be happy.” – An Unemployment Story

    May 20, 2015 by Lady Unemployed

    This is an anonymous unemployment story submission.

    I am currently unemployed after about four months. I average about two interviews per month and am constantly on the job hunt, trying to find a role that interests me, that I have a marginal chance of getting, and ones I have experience in. This is HARD. So many jobs posted require experience I don’t have. I am 25, a graduate, and am desperate to achieve and do things. Instead I’m stuck at home seemingly getting nowhere, with no replies to jobs I apply for, or else getting rejection emails. 🙁

    What I feel worst about is getting through each day knowing virtually all my friends have good jobs now and are living their lives stably and I am not. Something that also gets me down is having interviewers judge me for “not going for a more challenging career based around my qualifications and experience” when that is what I have been doing, only not getting anywhere. This is when I’m confronted with applying for lowly sales assistant positions or till work, just to get some cash in my pocket, and even those are hard to grasp because I’m obviously overqualified and they can easily get some younger student in who don’t care too much about their weekly pay packet.

    It is honestly so frustrating because I have members of my family forever asking “how’s the job hunt going” or “what are you doing with yourself now” during get togethers and I feel so inadequate because everyone else is on the ladder achieving things, with professional jobs and I STILL have got nothing. I don’t know what to do other than keep grinding. The only things that keep me going are writing as a content creator for an aspiring website about pop culture which I am really into, my close bunch of friends who are endlessly supportive, and music that honestly is one of the best motivations for getting out of bed in the morning. I really want to get into writing and social media as a career and I utilise it every day for promotion reasons and getting creative material out which a great deal of people appreciate, but all this as great as it is, doesn’t earn me any money. There are times when I just get so sad, and feel like I’m worthless, I won’t ever get to where I want to be in life…it’s an endless cycle.

    ?. One of my last jobs, I got fired because I couldn’t hack the pressure and kept making mistakes. I had been in it for almost a year and kinda enjoyed doing it despite being aware I was making a tonne of errors that kept being brought up in my performance reviews. That obviously had an impact on me getting future work when employers want to know why you left a job. Either you tell the truth, or lie about it, and which is the better option? Tell the truth and face the likelihood of not getting the job, or lie, have a better chance of getting hired and risk the employer finding out later. It’s a catch-22 situation.

    I just don’t understand what I’m doing wrong. Everybody that I know seems to be succeeding and they have come from exactly the same path as me, gone to school, university, had shop jobs, gotten some work experience etc and have all somehow gotten on that career ladder. It’s getting to the point where I want to be doing something in my life that is meaningful, not sat at home not doing an awful lot, applying for jobs and getting nowhere. It’s debilitating and stigmatising. I feel like there is no other alternative but to keep on every day on all the job sites, handing in CV’s hoping for responses. There are so many things I want to do, I want to travel and see the world, do the things I enjoy with my friends, and I can’t do that without financing myself. I wish someone would give me a chance. I want to end this cycle of misery and judgement.

  3. To all you brilliant, yet unemployed people…

    April 11, 2015 by Lady Unemployed

    I have technically been unemployed since late 2012. I have had some temporary jobs here and there, but nothing I would put on my resume. Those jobs were the sorts of jobs who would hire anybody to do them, and those aren’t usually very good jobs. In fact, all of them were pretty miserable.

    I mourn my old, long-term job sometimes, but I never regret leaving. You see, the first four or five years I worked there were great! I was kicking butt and taking names and the sky was the limit! Then the economy crashed, technology dramatically changed the industry I worked in, and if that wasn’t enough, the owner decided to merge her other company in with mine, and all of those people resented me for it. They had to take it out on someone, right? So I had to try and work with people who did not, under any circumstances, want to do their jobs (which meant I got to do my job AND all of their jobs) and the owner just shrugged her shoulders and told me I just needed to find a way to fix it. Yeah….that would be like telling a drowning man to just you know, like, not drown. I put up with that for three horrible years that probably shaved some time off my life. I wish I had left way before I did.

    Some things I have figured out while being unemployed/job hunting:

    If you need a break, take one. Mental health is dramatically underrated in our culture. We’re all raised with this mentality that we have to be busy and productive 24-7. I’m not telling you to take a permanent ticket to lazytown, but if all you’re being met with is rejection, or no interviews at all, just walk away for a little bit. It’s better to come back refreshed than to read bitter in an interview. If you sound bitter and cynical, nobody will ever give you a job.

    Make up something the interviewer can’t disprove to explain gaps in your employment. Never tell them you have been searching all that time and not gotten hired, which is totally not your fault, by the way, but they read that as a red flag not to hire you. It’s totally unfair, but true.

    Which leads me to another point: Unless you have experienced this misery first-hand, nobody, especially HR people, have absolutely no clue what it’s like to be looking for work right now. It breaks my heart knowing that there are so many worthless jerks who are employed, and so many great people who are not.

    EVERYONE lies. Don’t completely fabricate things like education, though I’m pretty sure very few companies actually check that. But don’t feel bad about embellishing your skills. At my old job I would work with the most incompetent retards with super-fancy careers and even fancier paychecks and think “How in the world did they get that job?” The answer: They flat-out lied about their qualifications. And guess who got to fix their stuff and make them look good to their bosses? ME! You’re welcome.

    The level of both apathy and ineptitude of “the system” is a major problem right now. I wish I knew a way to fix it, but I dont. The only thing we can do is keep moving. My heart goes out to all those brilliant people out there who just can’t seem to catch a break. At least you’re not alone.

  4. Waiting for that door to open

    March 22, 2015 by Lady Unemployed

    Submitted by an anonymous contributor.

    A little background, I am a single mom of two teenagers living in Atlanta Georgia.  The last time I was unemployed was over 24 years ago. I worked for my last employer for 14 years.  For reasons unrelated to my job performance, or any wrongdoing on mine or the company’s part, we separated in December of 2014.  I can relay all the emotions I went through, shock, disbelieve, weeping (yes I wept), sadness, depression, jubilation (felt adventurous for a wee second) and optimism. I did not understand unemployment until it happened to me.  I was always of the school of thought that when one door closes another one opens, until that door closed on me.  Although everyone told me not to worry I would find a position quickly with my experience, my skills, my background, it would be a piece of cake, I still worried.  I am a single mother with two kids, one in his first year of college.  I have provided for my children single handedly for the past 8 years, what do I do now?  When you go through a divorce they refer to the loss of your spouse as if you lost a limb that is the feeling I had when I lost my job, a part of me was missing and not just the money or the career, but the relationships as well. Sorry if this sounds melodramatic but I am just being honest.  Yes I try to count my blessings, they are many, but this is wow, something altogether different. And so with a mix of excitement and trepidation,  I set out to find a job in a city where I never job hunted before.  It has been 2 1/2 months,  50 resumes,  3 interviews (with no offers or even a “thank you but we chose another candidate.”), Linkedin Premium, every available job board, networking, working with a career coach, sending my resume directly and still I wait for that door to open. And I apologize to all who have been unemployed longer than two months and think I should just get a grip.  I hear you, you are probably right, but I own these feelings.

    So this is what I have learned in the 2+ months I have been unemployed.

    1.  It is very lonely, once you are unemployed it seems as if everyone else has jobs. You are even jealous of the people who have jobs that you would never consider in a million years. I am doing online surveys for points, 1000 more points and I get $10 to shop

    2.  It is not easy convincing someone to hire you, “I am awesome I really am”. I know the companies should be convincing me why I should work for them, but they are the ones with the money, so yeah, I need them to want me.

    3.  You realize you should have saved a lot more money.

    4.  It really eats at your confidence when you interview for jobs and never hear back. If I ever have the opportunity to become the interviewer, I would send a response to everyone I interviewed.  I mean how long does it take to write “Thank you for meeting with us, but we have decided to pursue other candidates”.

    5.  Your old job was not so bad.

    6.  You really do need a grieving period, for me I am all over the place, I have gone from “I can’t wait to see what the future brings” to “Why didn’t I just move” in a matter of hours.

    7. It really tests your faith.  This was my prayer this morning while I drove around aimlessly in my car, “Father I know if one of my children cried out to me with a need, I would do everything in my power to help them, in the same way I know that you are doing everything in your power to help me”. “Help me to trust you”.

    8. I wish I had been more sympathetic to friends and colleagues who lost their jobs while I was employed.

    9. There is no support group, no one to hand you tissues when you want to bawl your eyes out

    10. It really helps you to figure out the difference between wants and needs.

    11. After my divorce, I had to force myself to stop thinking about my ex and what he is doing, now I have to force myself to stop thinking about my old job and what is going on there.

    On the plus side I am working through the clutter in my basement.

  5. Are Layoffs Bad for Business?

    January 8, 2015 by Lady Unemployed

    A couple of months ago, my company did layoffs and about 10 to 12 people were let go. Luckily I did survive, but about two months later I still sense things aren’t right.

    It left me wondering what the true impact of layoffs and whether if can hurt more than help. Two months later after these layoffs, two people have left the company I hadn’t thought would leave any time soon. For me, I am trying to transfer departments, but if nothing happens my reasoning staying will be gone.

    Meanwhile, I’m hearing conversations about business not doing well from coworkers alongside talk of renovations and remodeling getting done. I think the problem here is just bad management. But the tragic thing is that work loads are higher and people are getting behind on things.

    I’m also seeing fewer “new clients” meetings and tours and even more emails about existing clients spending less money. Do fewer people mean more work and less energy for their coworkers picking up the tasks left behind?

    I’m watching this closely and keeping my ears out. I do know in the department I’m in, particularly for my position, they can’t afford to lose one more person without losing the ability to keep up overall. So I feel I’m okay for now until they figure out how to outsource my job and replace me with people who will do it for much cheaper.

  6. Unemployed but don’t qualify for unemployment

    November 25, 2014 by Lady Unemployed

    I made a choice to quit my career a year and a half ago to move with my partner of 4 years, who is in the military, because the military moved us. Because we are not married I don’t qualify for unemployment. In the new place we moved to I have basically hit a brick wall with jobs. I have a master’s degree, over 10 years experience in my field, excellent references, and can’t even get hired for retail. I can’t pay my bills and my partner can’t afford to pay everything for both of us. I want to work and I need to work. I apply for so many jobs I loose track. In the past year and a half I have had exactly 2 interviews, both over the phone. Both seemed to go well but nothing happened. I am not even getting a chance to sell myself in person.

    I have signed up for 5 different temp agencies and had no jobs offered to me. I did volunteer work hoping to get hired and it never panned out because they always end up hiring entry level people over me. I have been told I am overqualified. I have received so many “we appreciate your interest but are going with a different candidate” emails that I feel like I should just give up. All I want to do is cry.

  7. 5 Interview questions that should be asked, but aren’t

    November 25, 2014 by Lady Unemployed

    I’ve recently found myself on ‘that’ side of the table.  You know the one.  The side where you sit alone and face a panel of inquisitors who hold crisp, white sheets of paper with questions that require you to summarize your career in two minute intervals.

    It’s been over 10 years since I’ve had to go through the interview process and I can confidently say the interview questions I’ve been asked are nearly the same ones I answered 10 years ago.

    Questions like:

    – ‘Tell me/us about a time when you had to deal with a difficult situation and how did you handle it?’

    -‘What has been your biggest success?’

    – ‘Have you worked with a difficult coworker? How did you you manage your relationship while working with them?’

    The last one makes me want to grin and shout out, ‘Nope.  In 16 years, I’ve never worked with a single person I didn’t like!  Next question, please.’

    These questions have become so standardized that if you Google, ‘interview questions’ you’ll find hundreds of sites offering you the latest, greatest way to answer THE interview question(s) that have been around for 15-20 years.  To put that into perspective, August marked the 10th year since Google’s initial public offering (IPO).  

    Driving home from a recent interview, I wondered why we continue to recycle the same, stale questions; why we are using questions that predate the Blackberry or even the wide use of cellular phones.  Perhaps it’s a human resources best practice thing; perhaps these questions are really informative for some people, or perhaps it’s simply because we have too many emails, too many phone calls, too many everything that precludes us from rethinking the whole interview process.  So it gets pushed off.

    Hey, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it … right?

    Well, it’s broke.

    Interviews are meant to act as the gatekeepers to your organization.  If the art, and importance, of the interview is going to remain a useful tool, then questions need to be updated for the 21st Century.  Here’s an example of what I mean: during the numerous interviews I’ve been on, not once have I been asked about my knowledge of social media and how I used it for a successful campaign (which is necessary for almost every field these days).  I was, however, asked about the jobs I held in the early aughts.

    With these experiences in mind, I thought I’d take a stab at five questions that I feel interviewers should be asking, but aren’t:

    1. Over the last few years social media has rapidly changed.  How have these changes impacted your work?
    2. Which would you rather have, XX work from home days or an extra week of vacation.  Why?
    3. Where do you see our industry going in 2-3 years?  How are you preparing for those changes?
    4. Where do see a need for improvement in our organization?
    5. What’s the next step in technology and how do you think we can get in front of it now?

    You’ll notice all of these questions focus on today’s technological world and how they are working with/in it.  The questions are also diverse enough to get a better understanding of the interviewee.  Take the work from home question.  The answer may indicate better productivity and less stress on an employee if they work from home, or someone may want an extra week of vacation to take a longer break from work to recharge.  See how easy and fun this is!

    Now, like all interviews, it’s time to wrap things up and ask you if you have any questions.  In this case, what questions do you think employers should be asking their recruits?  Is there a particularly painful question you’ve been asked that you’d like to share?


  8. The Continuing Saga of a Frustrated (Passive) Job Seeker-Ed Tsyitee, Jr. @GreenChileAdict

    November 22, 2014 by Lady Unemployed

    I am so pleased to have this writer return to continue talking about his unemployment journey. Follow him on Twitter for more!

    In the last entry, I mentioned how difficult it was to find a great paying job in this area that was not a service sector job.

    The fact is this area-from Las Cruces to El Paso-has added just over 3,000 jobs in the past year (2013-14). Awesome. If I want a job here they are available. I just have to be willing to start at $9.00 per hour. Does it matter that I have a Master’s degree? Nope. Not at all. Does it matter if it’s in Human Resource Management? Nope. Not at all.

    What to do? I’m pretty much exhausted from job searching. I have submitted at least 20 different applications to 20 different companies that use the same ATS platform-Taleo. You know what would be great? If Taleo was a single use platform. Build my profile, upload the resume, and BAM! done. Then I could apply using that profile.
    But, that’s not the case. I wouldn’t be frustrated and annoyed if that happened.
    I’ve eased up on the gas job searching. I’ve decided to reach out to my network more instead of spending 5-6 hours job researching. Those public administration applications I submitted? Never heard back. Should I have reached out? Yes. That’s on me. Mea culpa.

    I did find out though that I need just 6 courses and I’ll have a graduate certificate in Project Management. 9 classes and I’ll have a Masters in Project Management. Guess what I signed up for? Yup, grad student round two.

    I’m still job searching. Just passively now. I’ll follow up on what I have out there. But, I’m done chasing the job rabbit around the track. I’ll just focus on networking and school now.
    And, if I see something that I can qualify for-you bet I’m gonna reach out first before subjecting my resume to the ATS Darkness.

  9. Mature Unemploymentista Finally Gets Job – An Unemployment Success Story!

    November 5, 2014 by Lady Unemployed

    Last week it finally happened. After being a “professional un-employee” for way too long – maybe 18 months? – a past employer telephoned me and offered me a job. Wow!  And, even though, as a  lady “of a certain age”  I’m somewhat disillusioned and war-torn – after job seeking for such a long time (my survival was my blog “50 Shades of Unemployment”),  the job offer has given me a confidence boost …And I suddenly feel like I’m part of the human race again …. make that, “rat-race”.

    I worked at the same organization, three years ago, when I was taken on to fill in for someone going on extended holidays in Europe. Back then, the boss had said she’d  like to keep me on, after my colleague returned. However, as is the usual case, funding ran out, and so my joblessness began.

    When I returned to the organization this week, it was like Ground Hog Day. And sadly, only three familiar faces remain, from my initial 2010 stint. They are the lucky employees who survived the staffing cuts, and associated stresses. They’re also the ones with the healthy bank balances. And, they also know where the bodies are buried. Of course, I know not to mention these, and not to get caught up in the office politics.

    So I’m not going to jump for joy – even though I feel like doing that – as I know things could change there any day, and I live with the reality that I could be given the flick at any moment. Meantime, my period of joblessness, has shown me that I can survive without a job, and that I’ m still a valuable part of the community ….even when some politicians suggest otherwise.

    Make sure to stop by 50 Shades of Unemployment to check out Carmen’s amazing blog. Congrats to Carmen! Signed, Lady Unemployed

  10. Why is she unemployed? She did nothing wrong. [An Unemployment Story]

    November 1, 2014 by Lady Unemployed

    Just a short story and personal experience of a client of mine. Client A as I will refer to her as, was a customer service rep. for a large non-profit organization in Md. She was a 7 year employee with an excellent work history. In late May of 2014 she slipped on a wet step while walking in her house. The next day she was unable to walk, due to a ruptured disc in her back. She called off of work, saw her doctor who put her out of work for two weeks and then was released by her doctor with sitting and standing restrictions. The doctor’s note was given to her employer and the employer was unable to meet the restrictions. Since she was unwilling to go against her doctors orders, she didn’t return to work after her employer refused to abide by her doctors orders.

    Two weeks later client A is getting ready to return to work and she receives a certified letter from her employer. The letter said that client A was terminated for job abandonment, the employer alleges client A never called off or showed for work for two weeks. Client A is completely distraught and can’t believe she is fired. She did nothing wrong, she saw a doctor, got a doctors note, gave the note to her job and told the job she couldn’t return unless the job followed her doctors orders.

    So now she is unemployed and struggling to get her unemployment, luckily for her we have agreed to represent her for free.

    Wish us luck as this is crazy, but not the first time we have seen this.