Why I smelled like tripe for a few months in the mid ’90s

If I reflect back to the ancient depths of my work history, I can recall a time when “counting raw pork parts in a large bin full of butchered raw pork parts” was a part of my job description (and when I say “a part”, I mean the only part. Yes folks, that is pretty much all I did). Psychological defense mechanisms have mercifully allowed me to block most of the experience out, but believe me when I say I know what it is like to have a shitty job.

Very often I see on resumes that a candidate indicates an employment date range with a very recent end date. If you just relocated to the area, if your company closed its doors last month, then of course this makes sense. A cover letter is the perfect place to explain your 100% legitimate reason for becoming recently unemployed. What leaves hiring managers unimpressed is if you resign from a position for a less-than-compelling reason without securing new employment. We will absolutely ask why you left your previous position, and the answer “I just needed to look for something different” (or anything comparably vague) is just insulting our intelligence. You will be asked to elaborate on your reason, and be specific, so be prepared to have a very good, legitimate (Seriously. Recruiters have very sensitive, well-calibrated bullshitometers) explanation for throwing away any type of position and voluntarily becoming unemployed when so many at this time are desperate for gainful employment.

If you are still employed but are one 20 gallon container full of freshly sliced swine snouts away from handing in that two-week notice, stick it out until you accept a new job (and get confirmation that you passed the background check). The hiring managers who receive your resume will be impressed. The most sought-after candidates are the ones who are gainfully employed, as it demonstrates your strong work ethic and loyalty despite spending seven hours per day elbows deep in moist future bacon.

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