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Old 12-11-2008, 07:58 AM
9 posts, read 22,143 times
Reputation: 11


Jeez wanaroo. Bitter much? Nasty little rant from you was unnecessary and out of line. Grow up.

Well, look. Getting out of college and earning $9 and hour working at a freakin Philly hotel was what I started out as 10 years ago. It's frustrating, sometimes embarrassing, and doesn't pay well. But, in the end, the struggle to get to where you want (or wherever you end up) is that much sweeter. I miss the days of only drinking the beer special and eating the cheapest food I could find. I did it alone and I did it my way. Thinking outside the box and asking for advice is a great way to network.

Networking by far is THE best way to get where you want. This is a good start. However, you need to determine a focus on what you are searching for. People can't help you find something if you don't know what that thing is.
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Old 07-13-2009, 10:28 PM
Location: looking at -charlotte, nc
75 posts, read 224,912 times
Reputation: 45
Originally Posted by Mark Fierce View Post
Thanks guys,

Yeah it honestly does seem the way it is. A friend of mine where I work had graduated nearly a year ago from a highly accliamed private school and spoke 3 languages (eng, spanish, and chinese) and couldn't find anything himself eiether.

The hunt continues!

Thanks for the words of encouragement.


Not to knock your friend but chinese is not particularly useful except in cia, navy linguistics, and other govt positions like the chinese consulate which are all ridiculously competitive. Spanish should help, but more so in the western states with more spanish-speaking immigrants, if s/he is willing to relocate. Also, getting a college degree is often not enough to get an office job these days. Any way you can go back to school and get your masters? If you can, do it.

Good luck.

By the way, I'm confused, as to what this means:
I took on the real world full steam, and quickly hit a brick wall.

Can you elaborate. Did you get fired? What do you mean by brick wall? I just cant imagine someone taking on the whole world by the tender age of 23 unless you're a mountain climber building schools in Pakistan and,well, thats been done. LOL (read Three cups of tea).
I think for people who have been out of school more than a year - are you simply saying you got a job straight out of college? Because it makes it sound like you accomplished some extraordinary thing by staying "took on the real world full steam"....? Not trying to knock you, but the more you tell us about yourself, the more we can help guide you.

Also, I have to respectfully disagree with anyone who thinks they deserve more money for their college degre than not, because while college makes you grow up and teaches you critical thinking skills, unless you're learning a specific skill set with your major, like Engineers, Nurses and Architects, most people's liberal arts education is not much more than a hodge podge of math, science, social sciences, arts and various random classes, none of which build on each other to give really specific knowledge. Even business majors, econ. majors, are going to need a lot of hands on training like wanneroo pointed out. I say this because I loved college, but knew I would need more training to be able to bring something to the table in a professional environment. This is why I worked for a while, as I figured out what I wanted to do in grad school and then decided on law. By the way I worked for 8 years in retail and food industry, did unpaid internships while working to pay the rent, prior to getting the "big job", my current office job. Not saying you will have to - I was happy doing that until I figured out what I wanted to do, and was happy to live like a college student for a while since I was single and had no other dependents. This will not be the case for everyone.
FYI...I began working at 18, so I had a little bit of a leg up when I graduated, which is why I have so much work experience under my belt.

Whereas, someone who is the same age as me who didnt go to college, say working in the restaurant business as a manager or cateror or anything else, has 4+ years of experience on me - those years of full time working while I worked part time in college- which means that in these so called menial jobs, they deserve to be paid more. As for office jobs, right now any young person 20-45 even, is competing against people with 10-20 years of experience for any particular office job, from receptionist to paralegal. I know that I dont have enough paralegal experience to work in the field of law that interests me - people with 12 + years of experience are holding those jobs. Environmental law is a new field and not particularly lucrative, so those jobs are incredibly scarce to begin with. Instead I work in IP, which is not my area of interest, but I can deal for now. Someday I will be a lawyer, and I'm planning to go to a school where I can take very very specific coursework in ENvironmental Issues, and to do internships there so I can get my foot in the door. It sucks that this is the way of life in America, but thats just how it is.

I really agree with Poster who wrote that s/he thinks educational degrees are overrated. I loved college, but didnt feel I learned much other than things that benefited me mostly. Even in my major, I feel far from the expert, mostly because my major had many sub-categories and specializations that take years to master. I'd rather not get too specific on annonymous forums to protect my identity, and such, but you get the idea.

Also, dont forget that some people get jobs because they have the personality for it - sales is a great example. I could do it for a short time, but wouldnt have the steam to do it long term. It takes a *lot* of optimism, faith in yourself, and great people skills, which can be exhausting if you're working with difficult customers with bad personalities. I know a lot of girls making 80k plus in advertising and personal assistant postiions, but I would vomit and die because I could not stand to be that peppy all day - both of those professions you have to deal with catty, backstabbing mean, arrogant people - which is why you get paid so much to deal with them. One of them told me she got shingles from the stress of all the gossip and pressure to fit in, and eventually quit for a less lucrative job as a realtors assistant, but is much happier now.

I like working in a law office because I rarely have to deal with clients or answer the phone. It just happens to suit me, and I had to play around and try out different jobs for a while to figure that out. For example, I found out that I'm good at dealing with difficult customers and making them happy, but I don't like doing it all day. I'll do it short term if its a legal client that has a couple of questions before they see the attorney, but mostly I really dont have to deal with clients unless I'm doing volunteer/pro bono work with the lawyer in which case youre usually dealing with people grateful to have access to an attorney, so it makes my life easier.

One tip would be to go to your local community college and get a vocational degree to get those odd jobs to tide you over for the mean time. This certification puts employers minds at ease because they know you at least have some competency in the subject. Glamorous, no. Useful, yes.

Also, join any association you can to network. For example, I could join a paralegal network by paying about $40 a year, haven't done it yet, but considering it for the future. Volunteering in your field will put you in touch with potential employers as well.

As a college grad, I remember being in a similiar position to you, thinking up all my strong points, but not really thinking from an employers perspective how they might be applied. Try to think about how to sell your strongest points to an employer so that they think they need you not the other way around. I know this definitely helped me to turn my thinking around.

A couple of books for the college grad :

Don't Send A Resume by Jeffrey Fox
301 Smart Answers to Tough Interview Questions

Hope that helps. Also, props to poster above who said anyjob is better in long run than not, even if it isnt a high status or high paying job - employers in future will see you as a hardworking committed person and you will get more chances after a while. Make sure not to job hop. Try to be at each job two years to five years if you can, but if you really cant stand it, wait a year before quitting. A year looks solid on your resume, whereas ten or eleven months probably raises a red flag - leaving after a year will make it look like a calculated decision to put in your time and do your dues to the employer who graciously hired you, while less than that might make an HR person go, "what happened here? why couldn't Mr. X hack it for a year?" I'm not in HR but I've been told that by a lot of successful older people.

Last edited by gorilazgomossad; 07-13-2009 at 11:01 PM.. Reason: add more info.
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Old 08-04-2009, 10:14 PM
3 posts, read 6,511 times
Reputation: 11
Not sure if anyone is still reading these as it seems this was posted back in December, but something that really helped me out was going back to school for my MBA, and most of my friends have gone back to grad school. That being said most people are going back to school now b/c they were unsuccessful finding work with a BA or a BS. Let me recommend the prep company I used to help me with m GMAT scores and my friends with their GRE scores - Kaplan Test Prep. I took a GMAT course with them 2 years ago and saw a huge increase.
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