Am starting off the New Year job hunting like I’ve been doing for the past 10 years. To my surprise I’ve already had two job interviews. As many of you already know, job interviewing can be nerve racking. We all read the online advice on how to prepare and ace your job Interview. Watching youtube videos on the most popular questions you’ll be ask in a job interview and what to say and not to say.
From my own personal experience, none of those tips work for me. Let me explain. In my head a job interview is a test expect in a job interview, you don’t know the answer you give is the answer the interviewer want to hear. Oh it BS when they say we want to see if you a good fit for this position/company. Well, Me, am a bad test taker and I found that out during my college years. I would study and prepare for my exams, only to bomb the exam. It was after my freshman year did I get some help and learn that I had a learning disability. Learning about this and receiving some testing accommodations like double time and taking the test in a separate room by myself helped, but I still struggle with testing. Even when I study for the exam.
I forgot to mention that I would be nervous when taking any form of testing. So being in a job interview and an introvert just adds to the nervousness. Any preparations I did in answering those most popular questions, I will sounded like I was unprepared. Well to me it feel that way. I feel myself tripping over my words cause I can’t take my time in answering those questions. Unlike in college, I had double time to take test, so it gave me enough time to formulate my answer to any exam that require a write response like essays.
The most frustrating thing about job interviewing is I don’t know why I wasn’t pick for the position. Is it because of lack of experience, was it the job interview, as one person who was able to give me feed back told me that I have low energy. I could only think he means I don’t sound excited. I will be honest with you, I have a low voice and I can’t do anything about that.
What have I been up to? Well for the past two months I’ve been back to job hunting. Yes still looking for work. Am sure everyone in my family has thought why I can’t find work. They don’t say it, but I know it has crossed their mind. I was temporary working at a University as a Administrative Associate which ended at the end of July. I re-applied for the position, but they decided to go with someone else. I wasn’t upset, but I was hoping that other job doors would open up at the University. Finding another job there wouldn’t be that difficult now that they know I am familiar working in a university setting. Well that hasn’t been the case, I’ve had about three interview, mostly for temporary positions, but no luck. I think it coming down to experience, they want someone who has experience or something close to it then hiring someone with no experience and having to train. Training takes time and that just something they don’t what to wait on.
The month of June is coming to end. I have completed two whole months working at the University counseling service as a Temporary Admin Associate. This means that I only have one month left before they terminate me or decide to bring me on as a Full-time employee. I have interviewed for the position and they have already finished interviewing all the people they wanted. It now just wait and see. The positive side is that the previous full-time employees who held this position have all started out as temporary. Am staying positive that I will be offer to stay full-time, but I will not be disappointed if they went with someone else.
The past two months have been a learning experience. I know now that yes I can multi-task in a fast environment and take charge of a situation on my own. During these two months I was ask to worked the front desk all on my own. Handling incoming phone calls, checking-in students, setting up appointments and canceling them. Also processing students paper work and typing in notes in their files. I do need more practice in explaining things clearly and I have learn the my voices doesn’t sound like a guy to the person on the other side of the phone. It doesn’t bug me, just confirms that I have mono-tone voice that doesn’t re-vibrate. I do know there a lot of things I need to get myself up-t0-date such as using excel and creating spreadsheet.
It will be a month that I began working at my new job. Awhile it only a temporary part-time position, I’ve been learning a lot. Am an administrative associate for a University counseling service, mental health services. If a student is feeling stress, having trouble in school or home, thinking of killing themselves, been a victim of sexual assault, this is where they can receive assistance. I am the one checking-in students to see a counselor and the one that will answer phone calls from student wanting to seek services or are in crises. For the past weeks I’ve been learning the operations of the office plus the administrative task. Since am new, I’ve already been “tested” if I could handle the front desk by myself. There been 3 times where I’ve been on own. So far I’ve gotten good feed back from the staff that I’ve done a great job handling the front desk and answering phones. It nice to finally show what I can do and that am capable to handling any challenges that are thrown my way. Yes, I still have a lot to learn and areas I need to improve in like communicating the information to students about the services offered to enrolled students. Especially for those students visiting and seeking services for the first time.
News on the job front. Two weeks ago I had a job interview at one of the University for a temporary admin associate within the counseling services. So I went for my interview and left feeling okay about it. Again I wasn’t expect this, but I received a phone call later that day that I was one of two candidates they were looking at to offer the position. The next step was just that they do a background check and I had to scramble to get at least two professional references. I was able to get those references, one from where I volunteer and a former co-worker. Once I submitted my references it was just wait and see. Then just last week I received the call that they were ready to offer me the position once they got the clear from human resources. I got that final call and the job offer for this temporary part-time admin associate.
I started this Wednesday, training and observing the front desk since that where I will be. Checking in students for their appointments, answering phones calls and doing other admin duties. So these past three days have been absorbing as much information as I can and learning as fast as I can. This counseling services deal with mental health so as you can understand there are a lot of sensitive issues to deal with.
Awhile this is only a temporary position that can end anytime or at 4 months which is the allowed time they can keep a temporary employee. At 4 months they need to hire someone permanently. Any way, am still excited about the position just cause it an opportunity to show what I can do and learn. There is a lot to learn.
Volunteering, it great that people do this to help a cause or something they have a passion for. What I don’t agree about volunteering is having to do it just to get work related experience. With that said, sometime at the end of October I decided to volunteer at the center library. I decide to volunteer, because my job hunt to find a job isn’t leading to any job offers. Why the library? Well it that was my second option and my first option was a museum. When museum received my background check the volunteer position I had discussed with the volunteer coordinator was already filled. They had another position but i wasn’t interest in. So I decide to volunteer at the library. Honestly I don’t know what I will get out of it cause getting a job there is very competitive. I convince myself, what do I have to loose except two hours of my time. So for that past month I volunteer one day out of the week for two hours at the library.
So far the duties I’v done are pulling books off the shelves that the computer system has listed missing and are going to be “retired”. These retired books are removed from the system and sent to the library store where the public may buy them for a few cents or a dollar. I think they also give them out to schools or organization in need of books, but not to sure about that. The other task I’ve done is checking each service desk has the supply they need like pens, pencil and small scrap paper.
After two weeks and two day, I decided to quit my job working at Subway. Not because I didn’t like it, but I wasn’t getting enough hours. When you are only getting a few hours and the pay is only $8.oo/hr that is not enough to live on, pay the bills, and just to get by. The manager was only giving me about 13 hours a week and when I look at the upcoming schedule he only assigned me 5 hours for the whole week. I already mention to him that I wanted more hours and his response was to only get more hours was to pick-up shift when people call in. At the same time he had hire someone else just a few days after hiring me. That person is receiving more hours then me.
Now, I felt I was doing okay and learning as fast as I could, but when you only have me coming in two day out of the week, it going to take me awhile to learn the ropes and get comfortable doing them.
This week I was hired at fast-food restaurants as a part-time employee. It is not the job I would have want because it pay low, $8/hr. Am thankful that the manager hired me and willing to take the time to train me. Am really not sure why he hired, but during my job hunt this past month I decide to do something different on my job applications. I started to not, not put down that I have a Bachelor degree unless it a requirement for the job position. Weather he would have hire me if he had known I have a bachelor degree, I don’t know. Just seems odds when I made that change, I get called for a interview and hire.
So far I’ve only work two days for four or five hours. It be interesting and a lot of information to take it. Actually it just feels weird even though it a straight forward job. I have met some of the other workers and they all seem okay except for one that I met on my second day. When she walk in I just got this bad vibe from her. She didn’t take 10 second just to introduce her self or just a say “hi”. She seems very bossing and “bitchy”. When I was finishing with the last customer I could hear her complaining to the manager how am doing things wrong. All I did was just say “sorry” toward her so she know I could hear her. I sure the manage pick up on my tone of voice, but I really want to tell her, “instead of complaining what am doing wrong, maybe help me out and just show me.”
Well will see how things go. Hoping I”ll stay there for awhile and just see what direction I should take in finding a better paying job. Am still in the process in volunteering somewhere to gain some much need experience.
I usually don’t talk about being an introvert. For one, it really doesn’t matter to me. I am who I am and I can’t change that. No, I am not anti-social, in fact I love meeting people and hanging out. Yes I do prefer to be alone, sometime, and usually don’t have too much to talk about. Am shy, clam, and reserve, but it just depends on the situation.
Job Interviewing would be one of those situations where I think my introvert personality can be effecting the interviewer decision whether to hire me or not. For one, when I speak in a calm tone during an interview. I don’t show too much enthusiasm or excitement for the position or for the question being asked. Especially for questions that ask you for details how you handle or dealt with a situation. Am sorry, I am not a great story-teller so my answers are just simple. Which I think can be mistaken that am not interested in the position and can’t I handle the job duties required.
Is there such a thing as being curse with bad luck with finding a job? No matter what you do or how much you try to change your approach in finding a job, you’ll never find one nor get a job. As my journey continues with looking for employment maybe I just one of those individual that will never find a job. Are some people just unemployable? Their skills, experiences, education, maybe their personality just doesn’t fit into the job labor force. Are employers being to picky with who they hire? It all about finding that employee that fit into their company 100% or at least close to it.
Maybe my resume is one of those odd looking resume employer don’t understand and get the wrong impressions. My job have been in the educational field to the technical web savvy field with a little retail in between. Doesn’t make a good attractive resume? Jumping around from one area to another plus have a degree in sociology doesn’t help at all. Gives the impression I don’t know what I want to do career wise.
*my job experience on my resume. I can’t fit everything so I left the small detail like month and cities*
Pearson, Professional Scorer(this is always hard to explain) 2011 – 2017
- Analyzed students responses if they answered prompt essay and score their response.
- Remained neutral bias in reading student’s opinions and religious beliefs.
Northeast Independent School District, Substitute Teacher
2011 – 2015
- Implemented teacher’s lesson plans awhile having the ability to improvise and be flexible when necessary.
- Determined appropriate consequences for inappropriate student behavior and write a report for the teacher about class events.
- Maintained effective classroom management strategies and applied advance teaching capabilities in all subject areas.
University of Texas at Austin, Undergraduate teacher assistant
2006 – 2008
- Provided technical support to 30+ students learning about web applications during office hours via instant messenger or email.
- Communicated effectively to non-technical students on debugging HTML and CSS code via instant messenger.
- Worked with teaching faculty to aid in proctoring exams
The University of Texas at Austin
Bachelor of Arts in Sociology