Unemployed, underemployed or not looking at all?

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Sal in Salt Lake City, Utah

30 months ago

Not seeing much to apply to and kind of giving up, but still keep going thinking that it will get better. Museums have free days, which is something to do and doesn't cost anything. Renting DVD's from the library is another thing. If you are active you can ride the bike around the area instead of driving for small errands, jogging when weather permits.

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Jim123 in Quincy, Massachusetts

30 months ago

@ needajob: I've only been searching for work for a couple of months but I have heard horror stories like yours. My uncle, for example, is a chemical engineer who cannot find work (granted, he is older than 50 but he could be a case of age discrimination). He has also been searching for over a year. I'm thinking of going to work for a temp. agency until I can find permanent work. Hopefully, I will use the skills gained while a temp. worker in my next job. And hopefully too, I will get to network while working the temp. job. Is this an option for you, too? I mean, could you work for a temp. agency?

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nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

30 months ago

I got let go from my last "real job" in Feb 2010. Was unemployed until Sept 2011, and that was only because Sears hired me for the holidays (they take anybody with a pulse, and some without). That ended 3 months later, and now here I am looking again. If I don't find something in the next month, I'll have to cash out my 401k (about 10K). Once that's gone, I'll be penniless.

This is just a guess, but it seems like ANY year+ gap in employment history is almost an automatic disqualification for any job at all. I'm being turned down from every last damn thing I apply to, including retailers who should frankly be begging me to work for them. I've been turned down from every local university at least 4 times each, for positions that MIT could train a monkey to do. They also see my Master's degree and must think "why does a MA want to work this nothing position?"

I will take ANYthing, at this point. Move anywhere. I don't get how I can be accommodating to the point of begging to work, and still be rejected out of hand for any or no reason. I feel like I've been blacklisted from society.

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needajob in Chicago, Illinois

30 months ago

Thanks for your responses.
@ Sal, I do visit the library alot. Because I'm not working in the field I'd like to be in, I try to read up on any news trends, practices, etc.

@Jim, I don't know about temp agencies. Reading about them on this forum has me a little bit scared. I applied at a local prestigious university temp agency here, but I haven't heard anything back from them. This occured a year ago. Whenever I call, I never get an answer.

Nick.. I know how you feel. I see the same job postings for which I completely qualified, and I get rejected. I know there are hundreds of people applying for the same job, but it seems as if there is nothing out there for me.

I remember I applied for a job, HR recruiter called me and the only thing she could focus on was "You've never had a full-time job since graduating from college?" No, but I worked part-time and volunteered other times. I gained skills (transferable - we live in service-oriented times) and could do the job.

.. sorry this is long.. But for people like us who have been out of work for so long, who don't have any recent schooling/training, it's only going to get worse. The kids who come out of school are going to have first dibs on anything that opens up... it's all depressing.

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nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

30 months ago

"The kids who come out of school are going to have first dibs on anything that opens up... it's all depressing."

This is why I'm thinking of moving back to the NYC area. I'm 32. It feels like Boston is going to get worse for me, before it gets better. Every year, some 8 major schools graduate way-too-may students....and most of them stay here, they don't move back home.

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Kathy in Charlotte, NC

30 months ago

Damn, reading this really makes me get depressed. I will pray that you guys find work very soon and that someone from above with guide and guard you from tough times in you life.

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Kathy in Charlotte, NC

30 months ago

*will* guide and guard you...

correction

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nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

30 months ago

Ain't no one guarding me now, no reason for said force to decide to start tomorrow ;)

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Parafreegal in Chicago, Illinois

30 months ago

Volunteering is good. It fills space on a resume. I have a blank space, and it is a major impasse.

Try to keep applying for jobs. I look at the job sites a couple times a week. That's all the time I need to spend because there aren't many jobs in my field and I know to skip the Robert Halfs and other agencies of the world.

You could temp, but there doesn't seem to be much work in this area either. But agencies will be glad to sign you up and blow smoke up your backside about something coming down the pike and calling you. It's worth a shot, but have no expectations if you do it.

Take a day or two off from looking during the week. I don't see how a person can look five days a week.

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Bill G in Kansas City, Missouri

30 months ago

I've been out of work since July 2010, more or less, I've given up looking for a job. You can only send out so many resumes or submit so many applications...I've done hundreds upon hundreds and either hear nothing or get a rejection. I don't see this situation changing, employers have become very strange with all of this background checks, credit checks, fingerprinting...frankly it's out of control. They are looking for the absolute best of the best and willing to pay them $10/Hr

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Ella in Skokie, Illinois

30 months ago

I look day after day, week after week, month after month and most of the postings are from staffing agencies and that is just to get you to come in and help them out. The job is filled, they pulled the job, the postion is on hold, that is the line that they use all means the same to me. We have nothing. This is just playing games with the unemployed. Guess we will have to all find a nitch and work for ourselves. Find a hobby, like making some kind of craft and selling it at the craft shows, selling on Ebay, doing odds and ends. That is what we will have to do, nobody wants to hire. I am sick and tired of people telling me to go back to school. I will not. I hear about people who are 30 who have advanced degrees and still no job. That is just digging a deeper hole in debt.

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Yep in Cedar Rapids, Iowa

30 months ago

No, I haven't given up, I get a little money from babysitting, which I use to buy books so I can enhance my skills without having to sift through online tutorials or going back to school. I also volunteer. I try not to let the frustration get to me, but some days it does. I only spend a few hours a day job hunting, and none at all on evenings and weekends.

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Sal in Salt Lake City, Utah

30 months ago

You can go to the library and pick up books and self teach yourself something you would like to learn for a future career or for your hobby. Also there is a site out there called meetup.com that you can find others in your local area and interest. It can be for job networking or personal interests.

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BridgepathAdv in Westborough, Massachusetts

30 months ago

I hear this a lot. I'm a career coach and work with job seekers. What I find, after speaking with people for 30 minutes or so, is that they are approaching the job search "old school". It's all about networking. Networking gets 65 - 80% of jobs. It also reduces the frustration of putting in a application and getting radio silence. One just needs to know how to network effectively. It's not about selling or going to events with 150 people. It's much easier than that. I'm happy to talk to anyone for a free consultation. Get skilled on networking!

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carthridge7 in Florence, Alabama

30 months ago

BridgepathAdv in Westborough, Massachusetts said: I hear this a lot. I'm a career coach and work with job seekers. What I find, after speaking with people for 30 minutes or so, is that they are approaching the job search "old school". It's all about networking. Networking gets 65 - 80% of jobs. It also reduces the frustration of putting in a application and getting radio silence. One just needs to know how to network effectively. It's not about selling or going to events with 150 people. It's much easier than that. I'm happy to talk to anyone for a free consultation. Get skilled on networking!

ok, i'll bite on that. I'm needing help with the networking. can you help?

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Hope Lost in Saint Johns, Michigan

30 months ago

I have been out of work since Sept, 2010.{Had one interview since} People! This country is in the hole! Employers are not hiring, and the ones that are, have no empathy for your situation. A decade ago, I had no trouble, at least getting some kind of job, even if it wasn't a good fit with decent pay etc., but now?!? Hopeless! Let me tell you...being unemployed when you're 20 something is one thing,, being unemployed when you're 40 something is a whole new game! All that exists around here are low wage service jobs, that even if I qualified for, wouldn't take. And it's total BS, that a man has to awake every day feeling somehow at fault or inadequate for something out of his control. We've all been sold out, and I'm tired of the prostitute media making this seem my fault, because I didn't get a degree in "Nano Technology"!! Occupy Wall Street...rock on, 2012!!

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KB in Chicago, Illinois

30 months ago

The unemployment rate in my state has gone UP in the last month. We are now at 10.2% in IL higher than the national average. The only employers looking at my resume and calling are from India and just looking for my Social Security # and date of birth. Why are you going after the unemployed? Looking for bank accounts? Those were closed out long ago, nothing left, have to eat you know.

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nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

30 months ago

I wouldn't be so distraught, if I was getting rejected from opportunities that were in any way "challenging" or "hard to get in." You know...I understand why I can't be a director, or a head coach, or something that requires specialized training and degrees.

What really gives me panic attacks, is that I'm not getting calls back from retailers. Whole Foods. Target. Home Depot. I'm either not qualified, or too qualified. None of these places see towards the future. They don't see that if I like where I'm working, I could be there for decades and eventually be CEO. It's become a culture of "why should I NOT hire you" not "why should I hire you?"

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Parafreegal in Chicago, Illinois

30 months ago

The job situation is bad here in Chicago. I think you just don't hear a lot about it because it's been this way now for four years, people know it and are used to it and because Obama is in the White House. If a Republican were in the White House right now, the noise level about jobs and the economy would be through the roof. I don't generally talk politics online because it's stupid and pointless, but this is how I feel.

Recruiters...complete waste of time.

Networking...probably the best way to get a job. I'm referring to knowing someone who knows someone who can hire you or get you hired. I'm not referring to putting out feelers with any randoms out on the street.

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nick in Somerville, Massachusetts

30 months ago

If Obama didn't win a first term, we'd probably be in bread lines. If he doesn't win a second term, we may get to those bread lines yet.

I'm not a rabid supporter (certainly not at the levels I was in 2008), but ALL of the GOP choices scare the crap out of me. They are completely out of touch with the situation, and their "solution" would probably entail telling "the lazy unemployed" to get out there and work with no support. No jobs...no support...guess how long it would take until the riots? A few days.

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Anonymous in Birmingham, Alabama

30 months ago

I've given up after searching for over two years. After I graduated from college, I got a decent number of interviews. I discovered that employers seemed to want more experience than I had...even for jobs outside my field, they wanted experience or had other applicants who had more experience already, so I wasn't chosen. (Some of these were waitress/hostess jobs, receptionist jobs, even maid jobs.)

The interviews seem to get worse for me as time passes. I got a few interviews last year, and they again seemed to have issues with my lack of experience. It's very hard to find ways to volunteer in my field (volunteers cost them money and staff time, *if* they have enough room for you). I just don't think I can take much more rejection for now. I'm applying to grad school, although I just want to work for a while. I'm looking into places overseas so maybe I can get a break from this heartache. I can't believe it's this hard to find a non-professional (or professional) job. I have some friends who've already been to grad school, and they still can't find jobs either....one friend of mine has 3 degrees and could only find a part-time job in a gym...AFTER getting rejected by fast food joints. Sigh.

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Motor City in Farmington Hills, Michigan

30 months ago

To volunteer it costs ME money! Gas is not cheap! You have to get to the place to volunteer, you are expected to commit to certain days/hours if you do decide to help out an organization. You need decent clothes, like going to work. Around the house, I am wearing shirts with holes in them, my sneakers are getting worn out, but around the house, in the yard, it doesn't matter. You just keep wearing the old and don't buy anything new, unless you can get a T-Shirt at the dollar store. Letting my hair grow out or have a friend cut your hair that can do a decent job and cut even. I realize it keeps you busy with something to keep your mind going, but not that you will meet people who know someone who can get you in and on the payroll. There are just way too many people out of work, it will take years and perhaps a decade to get people in jobs and spending to make the economy grow. I really feel sorry for the kids in high school who will be in the work force soon, and they cannot find a job at McD's to pay for college and their parents are not working or are doing multiple jobs, just to pay the basic expenses, not a luxury like college. They have nothing, and will have a hard time at even getting a start in life, where we had a start and are losing everything we saved up for and also our retirement.

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Parafreegal in Chicago, Illinois

30 months ago

You can see the problem with this country right in my last post, which as six negatives. Things are bad and polarized in this country. We have had a terrible economy for four years under Obama, yet Obama supporters want to blame it all on his predecessor and say things will only get worse if Obama is ousted after one term. Obama supporters have been asleep at the wheel for four years. Why would you want more of the same unemployment, bad economy, etc., over which Obama has presided? If a Republican were in the WH right now, you'd be whining day in, day out about how this economy is his fault. What a joke. Hypocrites.

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Motor City in Farmington Hills, Michigan

30 months ago

If we and someone else running the White House, the economy would have been in better shape and most of us would not be even on this board, we would be working. Hiliary would have done a much better job.

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BridgepathAdv in Manhasset, New York

30 months ago

carthridge7 in Florence, Alabama said: ok, i'll bite on that. I'm needing help with the networking. can you help?

@carthridge7 - I can help. How can I get in touch with you?

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TennesseeDeerHunter in Tennessee

30 months ago

I have read alot of the post on this forum. All I can really say is don't give up. Yall have to keep trying, I am an overseas contractor, so I know how hard it is to get a job, and how bad this economy is, I just returned back to the states from Iraq, thinking I would find a good job, That ain't the case, so now I am heading to Afghanistan. I reckon my point is, no matter how much this economy sucks, just don't give up, these contracting jobsare hard to get, you have to sacrifice alot to go into a war zone, but maybe yall can try applying for some of those companies, there are jobs for everything over there.

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John in Catonsville, Maryland

30 months ago

I have been out of work for almost four (yes FOUR) long years. I basically gave up looking a year or more ago since the economy is simply are not getting better. I have been attempting to find alternative methods of bring in some money with some success. But, as for looking for work, there is not much point at this juncture. I haven't even had an interview for so long I can't remember. Just last week, someone in line at the post office told me that a couple of his friends recently got laid off.

I am basically convinced that the unemployment rate is "going down" only because people are falling off the unemployment benefits role like I did years ago. The news claims that new jobs are being created and people are being hired..... but I can not find any evidence of that at all. Nobody can tell me where the jobs are that are supposedly being created.

I volunteer at two museums and have attempted to network my butt off to no avail as well.

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Sal in Salt Lake City, Utah

30 months ago

Is there another Sal on here? I did not post the 2 other comments to Nick on here earlier, someone is using my name.

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Julie in Plano, TX

30 months ago

Parafreegal,

How long have you been out of work that I've notice in a few of your posts that you have a big gap in the time between working?

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Avg in Medford, Massachusetts

30 months ago

If networking is the best way to get a job, then formal education beyond 8th grade is a major waste of time for most people.* I think apprenticeships, as in serving as a professional's assistant for several years , which is the way people learned how to do things before the industrial revolution,are the only way to go. This sounds completely insane at this point but if things don't improve, and they won't, budget cuts ,defaults, and rising unemployment will force radical changes in the way we do business.

* BridgepathAdv in Westborough, Massachusetts , I'm suspicious of people offering genuine networking services here. It's hard enough for people who have important jobs (professional services) to secure a job for their children, family and friends. Why would they reach out to someone they haven't interacted with, who's beneath them, who is outside their social circle or professional circle and hand them one of the few 'cushy' jobs that exist out there?

They don't even know if you're decent looking or personable, or can work under extreme pressure. Where are their filters?

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BridgepathAdv in Westborough, Massachusetts

30 months ago

@Avg - I am not implying that through networking you will be "given" a job. Networking is speaking person to person with people in your field about your skill set and what you are hoping to do. Note that I said skill set - you do need appropriate skills for that field. If the field you are in requires an education higher than an 8th grade level, you will need to have that.

Looking for a job is very difficult - emotionally, financially and time-wise. There are many approaches. In my experience (22 years int he corporate world working my way up), networking, if done right, increases your chances of getting the job you want, faster.

I understand your suspicion of people like me offering services. What I offer is coaching for the job search such as the best way to network, interviewing skills and resume writing. It's not a scam...I do charge. The reason I left the corporate world to start this business is because I saw so many people come in to interview with me that needed help. Many times I wished I could take the interviewee aside and give them advice that would make them much more successful in their job search. Those are the people I work with now. They are willing to invest in learning how to search for a job. You can check out my website at www.bridgepath.co. (.CO, not .com) I also write a blog that provides career and job search tips. Good luck. I really do know how difficult it is.

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Avg in Medford, Massachusetts

30 months ago

Ah, the aspirational class. The pockets of those people are bottomless. The aspiration class still believes in social mobility, even if they have to go heavily into debt for it.
Then, they don't get phone calls because employers look at the indebted person's credit history and then classify the indebted person as a liability, someone prone to theft or bribery.

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Avg in Medford, Massachusetts

30 months ago

Parafreegal in Chicago, Illinois said: You can't possibly be that brainwashed, can you? Wow. Just wow.

Let's see, riots have happened in Europe where governments have or threatened to have social services and government jobs removed to balance the budget.The Republicans are more willing to go trhough with this in order to bring spending in line with revenue because let's face it, all that money governments are borrowing from HAS to be paid back. Why governments started borrowing in the first place is mysterious-- but I bet it's because people want large militaries or government services and didn't want to pay the taxes to support them.

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needajob in Chicago, Illinois

30 months ago

Networking, networking.. It's really hard to do that when everyone you meet is in the same place as you: looking for work.

No offense to Bridgepath, but I've come to believe that networking is a bunch of bull. "It's supposed to get you a job faster." I don't think so. More people are fired, laid off at a faster rate than those hired. And like someone mentioned, the unemployment percentage drops as people continue to exhaust there benefits.

Also mentioned in another thread on here, we 20-somethings want to work. Not all of us are connected, not all of us want to take any job at any pay (some of us have rent (I help my parents with bills), loans, etc.), and not all of us are lazy. It's really difficult to wake up every morning with no job leads, no hopes for an interview and to not feel like a burden/disappointment to your family. I like the advice of not giving up. I'm far from a quitter, but when retailers won't call you back, what are you supposed to do?

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needajob in Chicago, Illinois

30 months ago

oh. another thing about volunteering: It does become very expensive. And it's a little difficult for me to do things while others around me get paid to do the same work.

I've become disenchanted. The library idea is good. It's just hard to develop skills/remember when there is no practical work involved.

Maybe I'll teach myself a new language. I've got the time to become fully committed.

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Kim in Chicago, Illinois

30 months ago

AVG I like your thinking...past 8th grade start learning a trade. You will get hands on knowledge and then join the work force. Much better path to take than the General College degree. It is not one size fits all. I have seen postings that require a degree..any degree, no you should get training in what your job will be not "any".

Needajob regarding networking, you are right everyone I talk to about my job isn't going to directly help me. Talking to retired friends are not in touch with the working work 100% any more, they are not in jobs to get my resume to the hiring manage. And volunteer while others are getting paid, makes you feel like being used. Hey she will do it for free, lets lay off him as he costs too much and she volunteers so it will be cheaper. That probably happens today, have not heard of it but I am sure it happens.

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TennesseeDeerHunter in Tennessee

30 months ago

As I said a few comments back, don't give up. I had a huge punch in the face today. As I said before I am an overseas contractor. Well I been home for a month from Iraq and was processed to go over to Afghanistan about 12 days ago. I completed my processing and then they called me to medical and told me my cholesterol was a little high 290, so they assured me I would just go home and fix this and they would deploy me from home. So I dropped it from 290 to 181 in 12 days, I contact my recruiter and tell her whats goin on, and she immediately calls me and says she has nothing for me. Granted this is contracting, but I was assured They would have a spot for me. Needless to say I was offered 3 other posistions with different companies, one was for 10k more. Its not like I can go backwards and ask these other companies if they still have an offer. Talk about a smack in the face! I reckon I just pick myself up again and keep trying. As for the networking i do alot of it. It does work. If any of yall need any help, I will try. I dont want any money. I just know how hard it is out there. I was just brought up that way, maybe someone i try to help, can help me one day.

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John in Catonsville, Maryland

30 months ago

And there's the rub.... I need to get interviews before I worry about what questions might be asked and how to answer them. I'm right back to asking the same question I have been asking for years: exactly where are the jobs that are supposedly being created and how do I get the interview for them?

I am not in the position to find a job overseas at this point, I need a decent paying job (i.e. a job which will pay the bills, no $8-#10/ hour stuff) within commuting distance of where I live.

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Bluetea in Texas

30 months ago

John in Catonsville, Maryland said: And there's the rub.... I need to get interviews before I worry about what questions might be asked and how to answer them. I'm right back to asking the same question I have been asking for years: exactly where are the jobs that are supposedly being created and how do I get the interview for them?

I am not in the position to find a job overseas at this point, I need a decent paying job (i.e. a job which will pay the bills, no $8-#10/ hour stuff) within commuting distance of where I live.

Don't know what to tell you. I am in my 3rd state now and I have a friend that is in her 3rd country!

Grandma use to say, "If you pick cotton for a living, you got to go where the cotton grows - it ain't coming to you".

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John in Catonsville, Maryland

30 months ago

Which is how I wound up in Maryland.... lack of work where I was living at the time. Circumstances have changed in 20 years for me and the jobs. And still the question of where are the jobs? Sure, they might be in another state... but which one? Sure I would consider moving to another state, BUT, I need some sort of assurance that after the move, I won't find myself unemployed in 2 months. Those assurances seem hard to find these days if they exist at all.

Just out of curiosity Bluetea, are you in temp positions? I lost count of the temp agencies I have talked to over the past few years. None of them have found me a position, only the very occasional interview. I have also lost count of how many resumes I have submitted without responses, let alone interviews.

How many people are capable of staying positive about the job market with the lack of response I have seen?

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Bluetea in Texas

30 months ago

John in Catonsville, Maryland said: Which is how I wound up in Maryland.... lack of work where I was living at the time. Circumstances have changed in 20 years for me and the jobs. And still the question of where are the jobs? Sure, they might be in another state... but which one? Sure I would consider moving to another state, BUT, I need some sort of assurance that after the move, I won't find myself unemployed in 2 months. Those assurances seem hard to find these days if they exist at all.

Just out of curiosity Bluetea, are you in temp positions? I lost count of the temp agencies I have talked to over the past few years. None of them have found me a position, only the very occasional interview. I have also lost count of how many resumes I have submitted without responses, let alone interviews.

How many people are capable of staying positive about the job market with the lack of response I have seen?

The last time I tempted was 10 years ago and I made money hand over fist. Today, this is a much different market and I avoid temp agencies as they are a waste of time.

Companies are getting 100 apps for each position now. Why would they need to outsource a job unless its to cover someone's 2 week vacation?

As for responses, get over this. Just keep applying. Job hunting is no place to look for common courtesy. That is like using Eskimos and lawn bowling in the same sentence. It' ain't easy.

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Parafreegal in Chicago, Illinois

30 months ago

There's not even temp work out there. I've signed up at agencies that do that sort of thing. Nothing.

Temp work used to be prevalent in the 90s. Now, the agencies say that employers want to see resumes and sometimes want to do reference and background checks and interviews before accepting someone for a temp job. Huh? I suppose this could mean they have their choice of people because there are so many and/or that they don't trust the screening of the agency.

Some day soon people will all just be hired as contractors. Hourly pay, no benefits.

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Parafreegal in Chicago, Illinois

30 months ago

Take off the blinders, people. This guy is done. He'll be back here singing Al Green all day long in a year's time.

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Katrina in Park Ridge, Illinois

30 months ago

Let's all send our resume to the White House and say. Don't forget the millions who still need jobs. Want my vote in November, then get me a job. No job, no vote! Still will not phase them. Keep spending the money the country doses not have, take the luxury vacations and Michelle invites 100 people with the tax payers money. How is that a balanced budget. They will cut food stamps before they will cut back on vacations.

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Parafreegal in Chicago, Illinois

30 months ago

I remember 1992 and how angry people were back then at Bush.

Things are MUCH WORSE now, and I don't hear near the groundswell as was the case at that time. And Obama is still much more popular now than Bush was in 1992. It's quite obvious why that's the case.

Blinders. Take them off, people.

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Katrina in Park Ridge, Illinois

30 months ago

Please see www.notbetteroff.com to do so. You will be able to upload resumes there. Why not get everyone you know to do so.

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Bluetea in Texas

30 months ago

hoapres in San Jose, California said: No matter who wins the White House nothing is going to change.

My Dad said that 40 years ago. He never voted in his life! Heh!

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Katrina in Park Ridge, Illinois

30 months ago

It can't get much worse than it is now!

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Avg in Everett, Massachusetts

30 months ago

hoapres in San Jose, California said: Not only can it get worse, I suspect that it will in a pretty short period of time. The first sign to be looking for is cost increases in BASIC ESSENTIALS being food and energy. What most people don't realize is that when you have massive trade balances along with a large debt held in foreign hands is that eventually the overseas dollars are going to be SPENT rather than SAVED. The reason food prices and energy is going up is because foreigners in the end are going to be spending dollars whether on US assets or goods. The US with the exception of high end goods and agricultural products does not have much to offer. The Chinese are starting to get an appetite for meat products and are becoming major purchasers of US corn. If you believe the government then the average American family spends 13% of their income on food. I could easily see that number going to 20% or even more in the next couple of years. "Out of work" and "increasing food prices" makes a poor situation even worse.

Most people won't understand what you're trying to explain. Most people think they are entitled to cheap gasoline because that's what they've been force fed. They have no clue that they are directly competing with people from other countries, for jobs, food and energy right now.

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AnnArborguy in Ann Arbor, Michigan

30 months ago

The economy is in the dumps for sure. Here is my story, maybe it will help other maybe not. I worked as an inside sales guy for a fortune 500 company making about 50k. I got layed off in May and searched for about 2 months while collecting a severance for about 6 weeks. The only offer I got was for selling cars working 60 hours a week for about $20,000 base and $150 a car or about $30,000 a year. Selling cars is the worst job in the world but it is a survival job. After doing that for four months I went to a new car dealership thinking I could make more money working with people there. I got a $2000 a month base, and a screwy commission structure working 60 hours a week. I saved up enough money by then to float for a month or two without working. I finally after numerous interview ended up getting a $27,000 a year customer service job and start next Monday. Ann Arbor is not a cheap place to live but the apartment we got on the east end of Ann Arbor is $620 a month and with my wife's $19,000 a year pension with my $27,000 salary we are able to live a comfortable lower middle class lifestyle. Thank you Obama.

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