Monday, August 23, 2010

Selling myself (not in that way)

Last week, on a whim, I responded to a job ad on Craigslist. I explained that I did not have a resume, as I haven't been actively looking for work, but now that Little would be in school full time, I thought a part-time position would be right up my alley. I described my pertinent work experience and explained how I hadn't had any office experience since emigrating, and that most of the work I have done since coming here was unskilled and not worth mentioning. Explained how working at the salon was open to me so that there would likely be no chance of getting a reference from here, although that is the most likely to pertain to the job.

Well, like I said, that was last week. I didn't expect to hear from the guy at all. Would you respond to someone who didn't bother to get together a current resume, particularly one you wanted to hire for office administration? I probably wouldn't, but that's because I loathed hiring. Loathed with a capital L. Your skills might look fantastic on paper, but you've got very little chance of being hired if you can't deliver the goods in person or on the phone.

Well, that's one of my biggest strengths. I 'give good phone'. It's a skill I picked up while working as a commercial insurance broker. If you want the underwriters to take your marginal risks, you need to be able to talk them into it, and to talk the rates down. That's not something that you are born with, it's a skill. I held high dollar accounts in the NWT, Nunavut, and Yukon Territories. I administered million-dollar accounts in Alberta. I'm good at that sort of thing. I digress.

I had a phone call today from the person doing the hiring for the job. I expressed surprise that he called, and he told me that he liked my email. He got over 100 responses for the position and has narrowed it down to 8 applicants, plus me.

I have not had an in-person job interview since 1996. At that time, I was hired on at the above-mentioned insurance job in Yellowknife. Since then, each job I have had was either by phone interview, or being hired by a friend. I'm not sure how to go about this. I'm the same in person as I am online, but I don't like the idea of having to sell myself to a prospective employer.

I'll call tomorrow to set up a time. I'll let you know what happens.

Talk to you soon,

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