“I’m never going to get a job!”, I scream dramatically in my head after searching for at least an hour. But like every time I apply for jobs, that’s really what it feels like. Until I get a job. And then I’m more like “What? I was never worried!”
The harsh reality of job searching, is that it comes down to an immense, and highly unfair amount of luck. Of course, having a great CV with a degree and lots of relevant work experience helps. But your CV needs to fall in the right person’s hands, the exact day they are hiring. The day before won’t be good enough, what with the “high level of applications we receive”. Yes I get it, loads of people want the same job I as me, but thanks for reminding me with your automated response.
And if you are lucky enough that your CV is in the right place at the right time, you are then dependant on the mood of the person who reads it. On a good day they might find your enthusiasm for the position endearing, while on a bad day they might think you sound needy, hate you for it and burn your CV. Unfortunately, whether you get asked in for an interview is more than likely to depend on whether or not you know someone.
Kindly illustrating this point very recently, is a company I’d love to work for but shall not name for obvious reasons. I applied for a position though their job page online. I also emailed someone in the company directly, having been given their email from a contact of mine. A few days later I got a refusal email from the online application. Three days after that I got offered an interview for the very same job, by someone who had been forwarded my CV. I will make sure not to stress that communication is one of my fortés, and maybe that’s something they could benefit from.
I am proud to say that my breakthrough into the industry was down to my own sheer determination and perseverance. I was probably given the interview just so I’d stop calling. My next job however, was due to timing, and a recommendation. My new employer watched numerous showreels and read countless CVs to complete our time, hating every second of it and always asking “Are you sure you don’t know someone?”. While reading through someone’s qualifications, out of curiosity he asked me what I got for my degree. I told him and said that was on my CV. He replied casually: “Well I didn’t read it”. Or right, of course not, why bother? He told me that someone in his team said I could do the job and that was good enough for him. Of course I am grateful my friend did that for me, but it’s frustrating to know all my efforts of updating my CV and putting a new showreel together and relentlessly pestering companies, will be gone to waste, if some other candidate knows someone.
I know I shouldn’t despair and remember how fabulously talented and hard working I am. But instead I can’t help think how lucky I was.
Well I better carry on job searching instead of writing about job searching.
Wish me luck.