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Posts Tagged ‘CV’

As I sat down to enjoy my beautifully prepared lunch yesterday, things took a drastic about turn. My cosy domestic bubble burst in the manner of a very large party balloon being pricked by a very large, sharp pin.

My mobile phone trilled, !NUMBER WITHHELD! flashed on the screen – Ok, better put my professional/together voice on!

‘Hi, can you talk? It’s me, how are you?’
‘Yes, sure I can talk, fabulous thanks and you?’
‘I’ve got something for you’
‘Great, what it is it?’
‘It’s a blah-di-blah-di-blah at blah-di-blah? Yeah? Interested?’
‘Wow that sounds great!’
‘Read the spec, I need to send your CV to them today, they want someone to start immediately’
‘Sure (choke on flapjack silently) I’ll have to you within the hour – I need to change it. I’m not sure it’s working – I’ve had my CV appraised and was told it would cost £350 to put right’
‘Yeah, that social media thing on it, no one gets it.’
‘OK, I’ll dump it’
‘Good idea – get it over, be quick’

And then three job specs came through on email. Three job opportunities! What a bloody shock. I caught myself suddenly having to think. Life could change imminently. This little adventure of unemployment could soon be over. Shit.

As with all things work related, thought was quickly galvanised into action and I dragged my CV out of the document folder – grrrrrrrrrr. I gave myself an hour to rewrite it in a comprehensive and chatty fashion – yes, I’m a dyed in the wool deadline addict.

I began removing all links to my work on the worldwide wonder web which I’d lovingly searched out in my first jobsearch sojourn. Boo hoo – my social media CV was lame and had to be put out to pasture.

Then taking the advice of my CV appraiser, I dumbed down the font (apparently it was distracting and would mean my CV would be straight in the bin), I removed the bolded type (apparently incredibly distracting and annoying and would mean my CV would be straight in the bin) and I added some editorial around my work (apparently just listing it would be incredibly annoying and distracting etc. etc.). The finished work was much better and I spotted a most embarrassing typo – I’d spelt Communications as communciations – which I swiftly changed. Cringe – my usual faves are brest regards and daft copy which never go unnoticed, thankfully I’ve never committed the cardinal sin of typing pubic relations as many of my (former) colleagues have. I digress, as I pressed send message, I breathed a sigh of relief and waited ten minutes before calling the recruiter.

‘Hi – I’ve sent you my redraft, it’s much better’
‘Thanks, I’ll pop it across’

Ten minutes later, !NUMBER WITHHELD!, I knew it was her…

‘Darling, what was your last job title? I can’t see it on the CV…’

Oh god, in my panic I’d left it off.

‘Don’t worry I’ll change it and pop it over.’
‘Thanks (choke), speak to you soon!’

With that done it was time to pick up Miniminx – we did the weekly shop and went hideously over budget. By the time we got home I was feeling tired and irritable.

‘Sorry, Mummy is feeling a bit cruddy’
‘Don’t worry Mum.’
‘It’s just that there’s all these job thingies.’
‘Yeah great, you need a job.’
‘I don’t know if I want to work, I like being at home and doing my blog and writing.’
‘Well it’s tough Mum, I’d rather be at home all day but I have to go to school. Sorry but you have to go to work’

And so I heard a small version of myself deliver the bare naked truth…Mummy needs to get a job.

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winter-wonderland

Oh my oh my – how much fun we’ve been having the last two days – no school, lots of fun and lots and lots of snow. And the best bit (among many) – I think I’ve finally fallen in love with this area!

I’ve been a complete urban minx for most of my life, so living in Zone 3 has never cut the mustard. We’ve lived here for 2.5 years now and my friends and family have always said ‘It’s great for kids, you did the right thing.’ But when they’ve asked me, ‘Are you happy?’ I’ve always said ‘Yes’ through clenched teeth.

It’s hard to uproot yourself, even if it’s for the better. I love 24hr living – but everywhere shuts early here. I’ve looked for the secret underground bars, but there are none and you can’t get a pint of milk after 10pm. To me, it’s all been a bit on the twee side. It’s very well-to-do, there are lots of 4x4s, boutiques aimed at the over 50s plus very noisy air traffic and even worse, nowhere to work locally. I’ve downplayed this with the upside of good schools and low crime, but it’s never really played out to anything like the way I’ve felt about where I’ve lived before.

I’m pleased, no, delighted, to say that all changed for the better yesterday. I’ll be honest, after an action packed weekend, we overslept and I was tempted to sleep in, but my half Catholic side got the better of me, it was time to get up and face the world.

It was so peaceful, so bright, so wonderful, so snowy. ‘Mummy! It’s Winter Magic!’ cried Miniminx as she looked outside, we both felt like we’d woken up in Narnia! Sitting down to breakfast and I put the news on – Radio 4, lots of snow, England’s gone to the dogs, yada, yada, parents are selfish (see Children’s Society story) and my phone rang ‘School’s closed!’ ‘Thanks heavenly Mum-babe! – School’s out honey, get your cosy stuff on, we’re out there’ – we headed out the door to one of life’s wonders…ankle deep snow everywhere and all our friends having a ball. It was like a perfect dream.

snow-lady

We went down the river (just at the end of our road) and who couldn’t help but squeal with delight and run around – all of Miniminx’s school friends were out frolicking and so were the parents. Lovely rosy cheeks, snowballs and smiles. It’s been such an unexpected delight, two days of freedom for the kids – building snowmen, toboganing, snowballing, crunchy stepping in the frozen snow – and everything pushed aside for once. It feels like a big, huge, belated Christmas present and it looks so beautiful round here, I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else and I’m so happy that we’ve had these two days.

So, it’s time to put out the rubbish and the recycling, make sure we get up on time and find that lost homework, but I tell you, there’s a lot to be said for Winter magic, as cold as it is, just thinking about it makes me feel warm inside, and it’s not just the central heating on full blast!

And a big shout out here – thanks Jo for your lovely bloggers campfire – I’ve really enjoyed reading all the posts and what a great collection of people.

Ciao for now…more snow forecast

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In an effort to keep myself occupied I’ve decided I’m going to really work this blog world. Personal blogging is hugely different from professional blogging and I am finding it a challenge to keep going. It’s more to do with ego keepy-uppy than anything else – how do you stay a) motivated while unemployed b) able to write dazzling copy c) not sound like a moaner?

The truth is, things are just not hot on the job front. I’m going to have to reinvent myself and learn some pretty new tricks in order to stand out from the crowd. The social media CV just ain’t working. Every recruiter I speak to says it’s hugely competitive out there and there are hundreds of candidates, when only a year ago there were few and far between. When I apply for jobs on corporate web sites, I feel like I’m aiming a pea shooter at the moon. My CV disappears into the ether, I get an acknowledgement and then nothing. Boo hoo.

I’m used juggling career and family and social life and addicted to high octane living, travel, pressure, deadlines, excitement and now my wings are clipped. So while I can chill out and take stock, I really need to feel engrossed, entertained and/or that I’m gaining or learning something and this morning that is how I didn’t feel until I got a few calls and managed to have a bath and get my face on. So what else have I done to do (btw I never add in the 7-9am school run mania, maybe I’ll post on that another time…)

So what have I done today??

Meetings missed = 1
Sick children needing picking up from school= 1
Job opportunity = 1
Cigarettes = 8
Coffee = 2 extra strong
Tea = countless
Cooking = tom yum soup from scratch (may share the recipe one day…)
Social invitations = 2 (thankfully)
Bloggering about = 4 (hours!!!)
Quirky events = 1 (discovered foxes have excavated so much under the garden shed it’s about to fall in the hole)

And it’s only 3.30pm…

And let’s not forget today is one of the most important days of this century – yep, Obama inauguration. It’s unavoidable and fantastic!!! I hope this spells the end of the credit crunch but it’s going to be a hard one to pull off. I’ve said it more than once, 2009 is the last year of the naughty noughties and boy this is one hangover to end all hangovers…

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England is closing down from the 19th December to January 5th it seems – that’s a long time to be out of the loop on the job front but I just have to go with it. Some movement on discussions but still no meetings. I found out yesterday the CV I had imagined to be languishing on a desk probably did find it’s way out of the window and into that puddle – I never even got through the door for an interview and I have found out through another recruiter that the position is to be filled this week.

When I was job hunting last time, I found I had a price on my head for sale or rent ie. permanent or freelance/contract work. It really made me feel like a piece of property and I can easily compare and contrast the experiences I’ve had with estate agents to the world of recruitment.

While it was a job seekers market back then, the same rules apply in this climate. Some people just don’t give a shit about you and some people do. Needless to say, I’m striking off that particular recruiter, for whatever reason, chemistry? There are people I have met that give you a whole load of spiel and then they never pick up the phone again – and there are others who are great and really committed to the people. I need to find the right people to help me because this is living in a vacuum right now.

Jobs board back up to 783 – weird.

News I’m hearing is that job offers are being retracted, I’ve heard from more than one person, including a recruiter, that people have left great jobs only to be made redundant by the company they are meant to be joining before they’ve even rocked up on the first day. I’ve never heard that in my career before and it’s bloody scary.

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I know I’m beat when my Bejewelled2 scores are below par on King.com…it’s been a very long day.  One job opp came up – way below the money I would expect but I’m going to check it out. Then the company I have been keeping my eye on for the last two years has just posted THE dream job. It’s probably gone already – all corporates have to advertise jobs publicly before appointing someone internal, but hey, I have to be in it to win non?

So, how do I get myself noticed? I think I found the answer. I’ve spent the last five hours creating a Social Media Curriculum Vitae – SMCV, you heard it here first! Yes, I’m excited, I’m packaged in 2.0 wrapping.

So while I’ve bought craft packs, glitter, glue, sequins and festive postage stamps for sending out Christmas cards, I realised, the only way to get myself heard in that hideous old fashion CV format is to link, link, link away.  So yes, linkedin, youtube, blinxx and every other place possible is now connected to little old me. I think I’ll leave out facebook at this point in time.

It took over an hour to post my CV on a corporate application, but when I finally managed it and the little 🙂 appeared, it was an Aha! Eureka! moment. So there you have it, I answered my own question, well not quite, as always, a chance meeting made me think about it. It was all triggered by a very nice breakfast at my favourite pre-9am haunt Highroad House – while my wheat free toast, bacon, tomatoes and eggs did not quite make the grade – they all appeared on large plates separately so I looked like the biggest fatso in W4 – the company was what counted and the conversation. We were talking about how to put the world to rights, and work and lovely people and new media and the light bulb about the SMCV came on after a couple more coffees 😉

So this Christmas is what I’m calling the CreditGrunch – while I waited for my guest, I was horrified to read a feature in The Sun about cures from the kitchen, ranging from Rosemary for PMT and chicken soup for colds – it really is a war effort – I’m the first to use almond oil on my skin or salt in the bath but I’m that kind of person – I don’t think Page 3 readers are! As the day wore on, I must have heard news round ups counting around 100,000 job losses today, and closer to home, the contractors I have been working with were all fired this morning with instructions to clear off and out tomorrow. Everyone is so miserable and the Grinch is very hard at work stealing Christmas this year. They’ve been Grunched…

But not everyone is sad, Miniminx had the Christmas Carol concert today, and not a dry eye in the house – tears of absolute joy and such wonder these cute bundles of innocence are so full of hope. Let’s hope we grown ups get a grip, I want Miniminx to have a glittering future and do something normal like be a vet(?!) and not even dream of being a WAG.

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A most bizarre week which mixed karaoke, school christmas fairs, a party, a friends’ first born arriving and sadly, a funeral.  Many highs and a dull, resounding low. It’s strange how sad news can stop you in your tracks.  But you have to carry on, even if it’s on autopilot.

I had a chance meeting with a colleague – or soon to be former colleague – at the supermarket just now, which spelled out my situation without hardly a word being spoken.  Loading up my shopping trolley with enough goods to get through a nuclear winter, I sidestepped a man with a buggy and swiftly apologised as my daughter had pranged him with our trolley.  ‘Hello’ he said and there was a time delay before I recognised him.  I was on a mad dash round Sainsbury’s before early Sunday closing, his face was out of context – casual clothes, stubble  and a pushing a baby instead of clean shaven and suited – then the penny dropped, aah, he works on my floor at the office ‘Hi’ I said back.  Then my focus sharpened and as he walked off, I could only feel sorry for myself – yep, I’m the single Mum from your office who is soon to be unemployed I thought…and part of me felt, oh my god, he was probably thinking – oh no, there’s that single Mum from the office who just got let go…

Hmmm, I’m obviously emotionally overwraught and tired after a big loss – I wouldn’t usually feel that way.  I’ll get another job, but once someone goes – I mean really goes, there’s just emptiness.  So this week is a jumble of highs and lows – very bitter sweet and I just have to go with the flow.  Who knows what to expect, when I checked my diary on Monday, I hadn’t planned to be going to a funeral on Friday. 

God bless her soul.  RIP BSB.  It was a pleasure to have known you.

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Oh gosh, I have discovered that the jobs boards are now syndicated whereas before they were independent which means that everyone, everywhere has the same jobs, from the same recruiters and it’s like trying to find a needle in a haystack.  Post your CV and you will have a 50% better chance of find a job – why do I want my details out there in the online jungle?  Why oh why would I want to give out my d.o.b, mobile phone number, home address and personal information to, no one in particular…it strikes me as wrong.

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