Leslie Cook

Unemployment: Week 11

In Unemployment on September 27, 2011 at 6:49 am

Sometimes I think it would be nice just to layback and not look for work. I could take care of Norm and the dogs, clean house, do whatever I want and just be mellow forever. Then I think about the mortgage and the bills we have to pay and my little early retirement fantasy evaporates. We’re very lucky in terms of financial commitments. Our mortgage is manageable and we have very few bills. But at some point the savings accounts will run low, and, since the stock market insists on removing money from my 401k rather than infusing it with cash, real retirement is a long way away. Oh well.

On the job hunting front, last week was really a rather busy one. I had several phone interviews, two in person interviews and lots of phone calls from recruiters. I also had an interview session with my career coach which went pretty well. One of the question that always pulls me up short is “What are your weaknesses?” Somehow when this question is presented, I draw a blank. I hate to think that I have anything in common with George W. Bush, but, like George, I can’t think of one thing I’m bad at! Unfortunately, this question was presented in one of my interviews, and, although I struggled with an answer, I did answer it. Jim, my career coach, recommended that I throw out a skill that I’d like to improve rather than a personality trait, which is what I used as an answer in my interview. I’ll give that a try next time I’m placed on the spot. Another all time favorite is “Where do you see yourself in 3-5 years?” My real answer is “Employed, hopefully by your company” or the ever popular “I see myself doing your job.” But we can’t really tell the truth can we? I’ve settled on “Growing in my skills as a technical writer which is what I love to do.” Not sure if they buy it, but it sounds nonthreatening enough.

As far as the interviews went, I think I did fairly well, although you can never really tell. There are, of course, other writers vying for the same positions. Hopefully my future employers view me as a great one time only deal and hire me. Lots of skills for a fire sale price, that’s me!

Even with all of my job hunting activity, Norm and I managed to have a very nice dinner with our friends David, Rebecca, and Kara on Thursday, and made it to the Los Angeles County Fair on Friday. Quite a week all around. Here’s hoping that this week I’ll hear back with good news.

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