Unemployment, scammers and bad business ideas

I’d love to be able to post that I’ve found a job so I can end the weekly unemployment updates/rants.  I’d still post articles about unemployment but it wouldn’t be so personal anymore.

I applied for twelve jobs this week and I have identified one of them as a tinyurl scam. Some of the positions that I see on Craigslist appear to be posted by temporary agencies – the same contact email address used in several listings for different positions.  I won’t hear from those agencies – especially if they already have me on file.  I applied for the positions anyway so they’ll realize that I’m too persistent to go away.

One of the annoying things about being home all day is dealing with telephone scammers and telemarketers.  I’ve had a surge in spam phone calls and texts this week – mostly from payday loan scammers.  I hope I’m never desperate enough to take one of those loans. Since I’m not getting calls from potential employers anyway, I feel like turning off my phones since the sales calls are a nuisance.

A friend gave me a job lead to contact a recruiter she met last week.  I emailed my resume to the recruiter and he directed me to fill out the application at the company’s site, then email a specific HR person while referencing the recruiter’s name.  I followed the instructions but the HR person has ignored my message and application.  Sometimes good job leads go nowhere.  But I take all the leads I can get.

I stopped in at Kohl’s to inquire about a part-time cashier’s position.  The manager told me to apply for a job on Snagajob as Kohl’s does not accept direct applications for store positions.  I had visited the Snagajob site in the past and was concerned about the personal information (such as date of birth) that was required to register to apply for jobs on Snagajob.  Has anyone else used Snagajob and had a good experience with it?

I read a job listing for an administrative assistant for a local children’s day school that required a Master’s degree in Education.  I also read a listing for a part-time Administrative Support position at a local college that required a Master’s degree in Administrative Support.  I didn’t know one could earn a degree in Administrative Support. Why go to the trouble and expense of getting a Master’s degree to work a part-time position paying $10-12 an hour?

The following was the final paragraph taken from an ad on craigslist for a receptionist for a professional office:

Please do not send a resume. Please provide a written statement as to why you would be the best candidate for this position. If you have held more than three different jobs in the last two years, please do not respond. We are looking for someone who is stable and interested in becoming a long term associate with our company. All references will be verified.

I have never seen such as request but I did not apply for this position.  Many job listings are written in a similar condescending tone.  I don’t know why the company would refuse a resume (work history) but require references.  Any unemployed people who are filling in their unemployment gaps with temporary work need not apply as he or she would not be considered a stable employee.

I expect to start as a hospital volunteer soon so I am hoping to find one or two part time jobs to bring in some income but I’ve noticed in the last week or so that part-time (as well as full-time) job listings are dwindling.

A couple of friends at a recent birthday party tried to help me come up with enterprising ways to make money.  My friends are creative but alcohol was involved that night.  Their entrepreneurial ideas included the following:

 Card counting – It’s not illegal but it could be painful if I get caught.

 Phone sex – My friends didn’t understand why I objected to the idea even though I wondered for a few moments how much a person can make with a 900 line.  I’d need a script though as I’ve never had to “fake it.”  I thought the conversation was all in fun until I realized they were serious about it.  “You never know until you try,” they said. Too creepy for me.

I need to consult with different friends for business ideas more appropriate to my personality.

I think I’ll sign up with a few more agencies even though I’ve been told the agencies don’t have any work right now.  I don’t know what else to do.

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6 Responses to Unemployment, scammers and bad business ideas

  1. Chuck says:

    I’ve been fortunate enough over the years to never really have to “search” for a job. I can’t imagine what it must be like, on a daily basis to go through that. Best of luck to you and I hope you find something soon. In the meantime, damn the scammers!

    • Natasha says:

      Thank you. I never thought finding a job would be so difficult but I’m not taking it personally as so many people are having the same experience.

  2. I am in your same boat, floating down a sea of unreplied resumes and applications. I recently saw a store front for rent, and debated what I would sell, what is “my product” … it is so hard to sell yourself when your talents are more vague than concrete. My product is the ability to get whatever needs to get done, done. My product is herding people, motivating and organizing people towards a goal. My product is too vague… but it’s what I got. This has been one of the most stressful times of my life. I feel your pain!

    • Natasha says:

      I agree with you. I can do much more than what is written in my resume. That is what keeps me from feeling really bad about myself. How do we sell ourselves to the prospective employer outside our previous industries? Perhaps we have to create a new opportunity for ourselves and be open to unusual or new kinds of business opportunities.

  3. lucycatten says:

    Oh I so know where you are coming from. Today I start the third week of my unemployment – a whole new experience for me in my adult life. The longer I’m out of work, the more my confidence wanes and the harder it is to respond to questions about my achievements because they feel so far away. Thank you for reminding me that I’m not alone.

    • Natasha says:

      It gets worse as time goes on. I’ve been unemployed for more than a year and I know I’m not the same person I was when I began my job search. Good luck in your job search. It’s not easy to find a job right now.

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