The 10 Worst Things About Job Hunting

No one likes searching for jobs. I’ve been fortunate enough in the past to fall into jobs or get referred to apply by someone I knew. Not that I didn’t work hard or have to interview for them, but it always helped me to have connections. But now, I am on the real, legitimate, resume-pushing job hunt. It’s awful. Throughout my process of looking for a gig that will benefit me in some way, shape, or form, I have created a list of all things that are terrible about job searching. job_hunt

  1. Changing your resume and cover letter for every single job. I’m not talking about just inserting the company name differently every time. For those who are really serious about getting a job, they should change their resume and cover letter so that it relates to the job at hand. This sounds like common sense, but as someone who has been the hire-er and the hire-ee, I’ve seen it all. And not to mention most job applications ask you the questions about employment, education, skills, etc. that are ALREADY ON YOUR RESUME. Like, they ask these questions as if they expect to open your resume attachment and find a blank piece of paper. There are only so many adjectives I can use to describe my duties at previous jobs.
  2. Talking about yourself. I can sincerely say I hate hate HATE making myself sound like the greatest person that ever stepped foot on the earth. I mean… if the shoe fits. But doesn’t mean I like talking about it. Personally, I just find it uncomfortable when an employer says “Tell me about yourself.” Seriously? You already know my street cred from my resume and your endless questions. Now, something I’ve learned from interviews in my day is that employers can generally tell when you’re bull shitting. So unless you totally suck and have zero skills or experience to talk about (which if that’s the case maybe reevaluate your life a little bit), then just be honest. Most employers are looking for someone who is down to earth anyways.trash-can
  3.  The Circular Filing Cabinet. Any time someone sends out a job application or resume (in particular for a posting listed online), there is no telling if someone is actually going to look at it. See number 1 for the reason why this is especially frustrating. It is proven (I think) that companies generally hire within or hire somebody through a connection they have. I stand by my claim that networking is the most important thing a person can do in an attempt to move up in the world.
  4. Condescending people. I absolutely hate when people are condescending. Like, oh, you don’t have a real job? (insert concerned look here). In my case, I’ve worked since I was 14 or 15 years old. I’ve had great jobs that I could have turned into careers. Just because I don’t want to be a corporate robot for the rest of my life doesn’t mean you should feel bad for me and talk to me like I’ve never had a job before. I feel bad for you for hating your life and the job you do have. So there.
  5. Skype Interviews. Okay, let’s talk about awkward. Do I look at the screen when i’m talking? Do I look at the little camera up top? Do I have to wear pants? So many questions.
  6. Inaccurate Job Descriptions. Every job description I see I’m like oooooh, aaaaahh that’s perfect! They all sound so glamorous. Some of them should really say: “Job Description: You will be our Bitch. Required Skills: Ability to be okay with hating your life. Salary: Hahaha. Good luck eating ramen noodles for the rest of your life.”
  7. Looking for work while you are still employed. It never fails, they always ask for the contact person at your current job. And all you want to do is write a little side note saying “Please don’t call.” You don’t want your employer to know you’re looking. If they are evil, which a lot of them are, then they will make your life hell until you finally escape.
  8. Desired Salary. Well, my desired salary is a million dollars, but that probably won’t fly huh. I used to always put “negotiable” on all applications, but some are now actually requiring an amount. WTF. You don’t want to put an amount too high because then they will throw away your app in a jiffy. You don’t want to put an amount too low because they will pay you that, and let’s be real, that’s not really your desired salary. You are trying to step up in the world and avoid Cup of Noodles for lunch every day. 9-utterly-insane-job-opportunities-on-craigslist

  9. Craigslist Ads. Many companies these days put ads on craigslist for jobs they have available. I get that, it’s free for them to post, unlike some of the other job search engines. HOWEVER, I do NOT want to be an “adult” model or a maid for your free candy van. C’mon man!

  10. Getting job offers. I know the thought of getting multiple offers at one times is absolutely dreadful. But seriously, no one wants to be that person that tells a company no after spending countless hours interviewing with them and telling them how much you would love a job there. I’d say just apply for one at a time, but that would be highly inefficient and you might be 80 years old by the time you finally find someone to take on your poor self.

 

If you are like me, and searching for a quality career opportunity… good luck! I’m sure you’ve experienced these things as well, and feel free to add more. Make sure to subscribe and follow me on twitter @NelsonKati

 

“If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.”
– Milton Berle

Why Hello There…

Okay so I know I have thousands of followers who have been desperately waiting for my next post (AKA my Grandma). I haven’t written in quite some time and I don’t know why. I think about posting all the time so that has to count for something right? Naturally, I was just waiting for the beginning of the year to start my resolution of writing every day. That’s just a lame excuse. I suck, I know. However, I really am going to make a valiant effort in writing every week. Even if they are just little motivational tips I pick up along the way.

So what’s new with me? Well, I moved back to Reno from sunny Southern California just recently. I had written before about scoring a dream job right out of college. I worked hard to get where I was, working for an ESPN College Basketball tournament. I learned more than I could ever imagine, and met some incredible people (See Me with Mike Brown below… I still respect the guy even though he didn’t quite get my Lakers a lot of tallies in the ‘W’ column).

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I also learned that sometimes companies really, really suck. I went from working at a place that cared so much about me, to working for people who put me in the worst of situations and couldn’t even pay me on time (or at all for that matter). It opened my eyes to the brutal reality of the business world. I questioned every aspect of what I was doing. Sure, I had a really cool job which from the outside seemed glamorous. In reality, I was working two other jobs to make ends meet and running myself into the ground. I talked about it like I loved it, and I worked my ass off so that only those closest to me knew how I really felt. Then my job ended, the tournament was over. My choices were to stay with the company and go to another event, find another opportunity in LA (or elsewhere) , or just go back to Reno. Well, I decided that I would rather live in the fiery core of the earth than live in LA. Seriously. At the same time, I didn’t like the thought of “going back” to Reno. I felt like I was giving up, like I was failing. What would I tell people when I got there? I had just been doing my dream job and now I’m going home to do who knows what. And honestly it took me this long to even find the courage to write it down for the fear that people might judge my actions or make me feel like I was giving up. But it came to the point where I just had to decide what to do.

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So I did it. I came back to Reno. Sure, it was a decision I had to make financially (that whole not being paid thing really threw a wrench into living the So Cal life), but in reality it was something I wanted to do for me. I realized that I need to stop doing things for other people and start doing things for myself. I need to find out what I want in life, and then go for it. All I’ve ever wanted is to do something remarkable, and I will, but I’m going to do it on my terms now. The only person I have to prove anything to is myself.

So here it is. I’m on a new journey in life and I’m sure I’ll be posting way more often. Make sure to describe and follow me on twitter @NelsonKati for all my latest updates.

“Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple.”  ~ Dr. Seuss

How to Make Yourself Competitive

The single most important trait one can have in a changing economy is the ability to be adaptable. That’s what will put you ahead of the others. All too often we hear people excusing others, “Oh, they are just stuck in their old ways.” Well move over traditionalists, you better clear the path for the modern thinkers.

Let’s face it… The world is changing. I watched this speech by Gary Vaynerchuk recently and it really opened my eyes. It is a long one, but I highly recommend it.

I can remember when Facebook first came out. I was NOT having it. Perfectly content with my MySpace account, I wanted nothing to do with this new social media approach. It looked different, it was confusing, and I didn’t want to take the time to learn it. Finally when I entered college, I gave in. EVERYBODY was doing it (that makes it cool right?).

There are a lot of things we do because other people are doing it. Facebook was one of the many things I said I’d never do, but then gave in because others were doing it (wearing skinny jeans and drinking Starbucks coffee are on that list as well). Since then, I’ve realized the benefit of jumping on trends before they become the norm. I’m not talking about fashion here, unless you’re a fashion entrepreneur, then you can relate this to skinny jeans all you want.

What if we had the ability to see what would be popular in a matter of weeks, months, or even years? Well, we do! Although it’s not full proof, we have the technology to see what people are talking about in real time. With the use of Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and all the other social media sites, we can see what people like, at the instant they like it or talk about it.

If we want to grow in society, we have to be forward thinking. The other day, I heard someone talking about how Facebook finally forced them to have the new “timeline” profile. Welcome to 2012, lady. I hated the idea of the timeline at first, it was weird. At the same time, I knew that Facebook was heading in this direction and that eventually everyone would have this profile. So I voluntarily got the new profile while it was still an option, and I adapted to it. Sure, I could have waited until now when Facebook forced me to have it, but then I’d be behind the curve. Everyone would already be used to it, while I was still learning it.

We can apply this same scenario to the business world. Employers want adaptability. I have always said there is only so much we can learn by reading a textbook, but the ability to be creative and forward thinking is a skillset that will put you ahead. It is a gamble trying to anticipate what will be the trend in the future, but risk often equals reward.

“If life is moving slowly… Run faster!” ~Jordan D. Ulmer

A Whole New World

It’s been about a month since my last post. Since then, I’ve moved to California, went for a week long training session in Washington DC, and came back to try and get the ball rolling with my new job.

In the past month I’ve learned a lot. The main thing that has had an impact on me is the power of adapting to new and unknown situations. In order to grow, we must be able to change. We can stay doing the same old thing day after day, or we can adapt to make ourselves competitive in a growing market. There is a constant need to update our skills, revamp our attitudes, and never cut the ties with what keeps us motivated.

Southern California is a whole new world, to say the least (Literally, I think they’d become their own country if they wanted to). There is no small town feel like I’m used to. I don’t walk into a business and expect to see someone I know. People are friendly enough, but they are mostly just concerned with their own wellbeing (unless we are talking about a driving situation, in which case California drivers are concerned with destroying everyone else’s wellbeing. Seriously. It’s terrifying).

Moving is never easy. It involves leaving behind your loved ones, and stepping out of your comfort zone. I took a huge leap of faith, entering a newly created position in a tough market, for only a certain number of months. But that’s life right? Taking chances is the only way we can get to where we want to be.

They say “good things come to those who wait.” Well, I beg to differ. I think good things come to those who get after it! There is a difference between having patience and waiting. Why wait for something good to happen, when we can be proactive and make it happen. That seems like a much more efficient approach to me.

We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things,
because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.”
~ Walt Disney.

Dwelling is for Houses, Not Humans

It always seems that one pivotal moment in a person’s life is going to change who they are forever. This event can either be wonderful, or it can be terrible. When it’s one of those terrible events, we as humans can choose to let it define us in a positive or negative way.

I got in a car accident last Friday, just a little fender bender. I was looking over my shoulder for my turn to merge right onto the cross street. Little did I know, the person in front of me had stopped and decided not to go as it had seemed. Traffic cleared, I was inching up, and as soon as I looked forward and took my foot of the brake… WHAM. I crashed right into this guy, in my brand new car. Now although he was perfectly fine to get out of the car and come get my driver’s license (and proceed to hide it in his wallet, mind you), he got back in the car, called 911, and got carted off on the stretcher along with his wife. I’d be lying if I said this is how I wanted to spend my Friday afternoon. However, things happen, and it can always be worse.

 

Life events (some that we are not proud of) happen all the time. We are human and we make mistakes. The single worst thing we can do is sit around and dwell on it, wondering why me or what if. I have not had any one single event happen in my life where I sat back and thought my world had been turned upside down. So what, I got in a little car accident. Sure, I’m mad at myself for it and even madder at the situation that followed. However, there are people out there with much bigger issues to face.

Although I am not speaking from personal experience, when these big issues come around we have to decide what to do. We can dwell on it, but that won’t get us anywhere. We can focus on what went wrong, but that will only prohibit us from moving on. Or we can take what we’ve learned and focus on the future. You never hear about the person who went through something terrible and spent their whole life in regret. The strongest and most incredible people I know have had some sort of life-altering event happen to them and overcame it. I never wish anything bad upon myself or others, but I hope that if that time approaches any of us, we can look our problems right in the eye and make the choice to move on.

 

“What’s the point of pointing the finger, other than to stall your own progress in moving on?” – Lisa Steadman

Taking My Own Advice

For the past few weeks I’ve been a mix of emotions. I have been stressed, nervous, excited, scared, sad, happy, you name it! Every time I go to write a blog, I just sit there and stare at blank screen (talk about productivity at its finest). I have so much to write, but couldn’t seem to get my thoughts out. I’m a college graduate now, and I can’t even write a blog. What is wrong with me?!

But, alas, I found some saving grace. Last night I finally had the opportunity to meet Kristin Stith (I emphasize the finally because between our two crazy schedules it was like trying to set up a meeting between Lil’ Wayne and the President of the United States). Kristin, who is equally as cool as Lil’ Wayne, is a graduate student at the University of Nevada. We first connected via social media and knew we had to meet each other. We have a lot in common in that social media has done wonders for the both of us, and not to mention she is from So Cal, where I am moving in a few short weeks. While we were eating our delicious gnocchi and baby octopus (yeah… that was my first reaction too) at Campo, I was soaking up all the wisdom and knowledge she could give me.

It was at dinner that I realized I need to start taking my own advice. Here I am, freaking out about moving to a new place, leaving a job I absolutely love, and entering a whole new type of career. If I was another person giving me advice, I’d probably slap myself for being such a sissy.

Of course, it is scary to pick up and move from the place you have lived your entire life. I will undoubtedly miss my friends and family, and I’ll even miss this Biggest Little City too. However, I know that the changes I am about to make will open the doors to something great. For some people, coasting through life doing the same thing day after day is a perfectly fine way of living. For others, life involves risk-taking and dedication to move forward and upward. To each their own, but for me, I’m more of the latter.

I spent four years of my college career working my way through school at a huge company, climbing the corporate ladder and playing it “safe.” I worked hard, I got promotions, and I did whatever I could to make the management happy. A light bulb came on for me when I studied abroad in Spain last year. For five months I lived off savings and loans, traveled my heart out, and met the most amazing people. When I came back to the states, I went back to work within a week, and it was like I never left. Except this time around, I knew I needed to make some changes. I wasn’t passionate about my work; I was just going through the cycle. About 9 months ago, I found an opportunity to work for the company I am with now, and my life was changed once again. Never did I think I could work for a place with so much unity and purpose. Although I am leaving them to follow my own passion, I will take away so much from the experience I have had here.

Decisions aren’t always easy to make. Let’s face it, life isn’t always easy in general. But the hardest decisions and the most difficult obstacles create a feeling of accomplishment that no easy task can give you. From here on out, I’m going to take a piece of my own advice. I’ll stop wondering what if things go not-so-according-to-plan, and instead look forward to what will happen if I put my mind to it and follow my dreams. I hope you will follow along for my journey, as I write about my move, my new job, and anything else I can conjure up a blog about.

“To profit from good advice requires more wisdom than to give it.” – Wilson Mizner

What I Learned In College

Two weeks ago I put on my very fashionable cap and gown, and I walked across the stage at the University of Nevada (The TRUE University of Nevada). In an attempt to get the some-odd 2000 graduates through the ceremony, we were herded through the line, our names called via a small slip of paper we held, with not even a breath in-between. I couldn’t believe that my four years of college (five if you count my victory lap) we’re finalized within seconds.

I still vividly remember my high school graduation. At the time, I believed that single event was (seriously) the high point of my life. I cracked my shell in high school. No more shy girl who didn’t speak to anyone. I mean, just check out the video of my keynote speech. I literally had sunshine and rainbows coming out my you-know-what.

Looking back on this speech and seeing what I’ve become over the past five years is truly amazing. I have taken my life in a direction I never thought was possible. I’ve worked hard, made important life decisions, gained amazing new friends and connections, all while having a grand ol’ time. In the 2.5 seconds I walked swiftly across that university stage, I tried to think (quickly, I didn’t have much time) about what I had learned in my college career that will help me in the future. Just as I won’t remember what I learned in my high school trigonometry class, I probably won’t remember what I learned in the majority of my college courses. With the exception of the following:

  • Social Business – The single most important class I’ve taken. Social media is the key to success in new age business. Thanks to Bret Simmons who was a great teacher and got me started with this blog (and much more).
  • Accounting – I hate it. I’ll always hate it. It gives me a headache just trying to remember anything other than debits and credits.
  • International Management – Learning a second language is a must. I better get to work on my goal of becoming fluent in Spanish.
  • Economics – I figured out that I can successfully fall asleep in class with my eyes open. I don’t recommend it. It makes learning that material really difficult.
  • Astronomy – The world may end at any time. Seriously. Asteroid sneak attack? That totally could happen with mere days’ notice.

What I legitimately learned in college is that it’s not about the classes you take and the grades you get (unless you want to go to medical school/law school then good luck and study up). I learned more about myself and what I want to do from the experiences I had. I got involved by joining the business fraternity Delta Sigma Pi. I joined clubs, did community service, put on events, and more. If I had one recommendation for anyone going to college, it would be to get involved in any way you can. Network as much as possible.

I recently was offered a position with ESPN and PMI in California working for the Anaheim Classic. This would have never happened if I hadn’t put myself out there not only in person, but in the social media world as well. Who you know will get you in the door, and how hard you work will keep you there. If things aren’t going your way, if you can’t find a job… push harder, work harder, and do whatever you can to make you stand out in a crowd. You won’t regret it.

You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on your own.
And you know what you know. You are the guy who’ll decide where to go.” – Dr. Seuss