Showing posts from May, 2011

Malled. Really?

In the late summer of 2008, I returned to the United States from Spain (at least we Americans don't have a 25 percent unemployment rate, eh?) and found the job market a vast wasteland. Like so many of my journalism brethren before me, I turned to retail. I worked at an independent pharmacy and gift shop until October 2009, when I was laid off.
So I have little sympathy for Caitlin Kelly, author of Malled: My Unintentional Career in Retail. She takes a stab at exposing the plight of the proletariat, but Upton Sinclair she is not. For starters, her "career" in retail was two, then reduced to one day a week stints at The North Face in a New York suburb. When I read career, I think 40 hours a week. She complains about climbing like a monkey in the dark, dirty stock room, I raise her a stock room that occasionally flooded with raw sewage. It brought another perspective to the phrase "crappy job."
I can, however, commiserate with her chapter on customers from hell, he…

Putting on the Guerrilla Suit

I attended my first career fair today. I'm not normally claustrophobic, but the sheer amount of people, schmooze and desperation in the air was enough for me to make the event a search-and-employ mission. I scouted out a few companies, pitched myself, handed them my resume and walked out. I needed a latte.
Next time I'm developing an all-out battle strategy, which brings me to my next funemployment item.

GUERRILLA MARKETING FOR JOB HUNTERS 3.0 IS OUT! It's like finally getting an iPhone 3 when the 4 came out. But lest you be dismayed, here's the highlight reel for the rest of 2.0. It's still chock-full of fantastic tactics. Parts two through four of Guerrilla Marketing detail what you should overhaul in your job-hunting arsenal. If you have a non-specific resume that doesn't state keywords from the job you're applying for, you'll be eliminated from the resume stack. Your resume and cover letter are your sales pitch. Write them as such, (but truthfully!) …

Purple Squirrel

"You're in a market that is searching for the purple squirrel candidate, which is hard, but I believe you're someone's purple squirrel." A wonderful friend said this in the midst of a frenzied Google Chat discussion (she has three kids -- that's more than a full-time job). 
I love it. Mostly because most days, I feel like a purple squirrel. I have enough work experience to make me dangerous, but not enough in any one place to look proficient in my field. A little funky, but mostly just weird. But I've learned so much.

Speaking of learning, I'm in the last week of my internship. I'm finishing up news releases, trying to  get last-minute coverage for my client and preparing to pass the baton to the next intern. I've gotten a great taste of working in public relations and observing all the kinds of people involved. If I'm a purple squirrel, the internship's given me a bit of a Mohawk to make this rodent a little funkier. 
The chairman of my …