Gapped Out


This is exactly how a job seeker feels when faced with gaps in their employment.
This is exactly how a job seeker feels when faced with gaps in his/her employment history. Image created by David Gay, with permission to use provided credit is given to the author.

As previously mentioned in one of my past blog posts, I always ask the interviewer why I was not chosen as a new hire for the position I applied for. The approach I take is neither spiteful nor accusing. It’s phrased in a diplomatic way so I can find out if it was something I did wrong. In all of the cases so far, it wasn’t because of anything I did during the interview. I’ve done interviews enough times to have the approach down to instinct. This is neither arrogance nor conceit. I’ve been looking for work for over 3 years now so it’s safe to say I’ve had enough practice at doing interviews.

On those occasions where it was not possible to speak directly to the interviewer, I asked someone else the question, usually the HR manager of the company or the “head-hunter” who arranged the interview for me. It was one “head-hunter” who arranged a recent interview that told me it was my lengthy lack of full-time employment that prevented me from landing the position I applied for.

I’ll admit my work history has lots of gaps: I haven’t worked full-time since the end of 2009. It’s not from lack of trying, as I’ve applied for countless positions, networked like a maniac, created videos and maintained this blog. I’ve even begged on Begslist for help. Despite all this, it’s somehow my fault that I haven’t found work yet when in fact one can say it’s the interviewer’s fault for not hiring me in the first place.

Allow me to explain. Of course it is unfair to say it’s the interviewer’s fault for my unemployment. It’s the best candidate for the job that gets hired, but logically my statement makes sense. I can’t intone ethereally while waving a wand, “By the sweat and toil of the job seeker, by the coin that drives the economy, by the dry cleaner who smites the stains out of my interview jacket, I command thee: GIVE ME A JOB!” and *poof* I’m employed.  I can prepare and research and rehearse all I can for the interview but the ultimate decision to hire me or not comes from the one who sits across from me during said interview.

It is that decision that produces the Catch-22 that is incredibly hard to break. According to the “head-hunter”, I was not hired because I haven’t had steady employment for a long time, but if I had steady employment, would I even be going on interviews, applying for open job positions, networking like a maniac, creating videos and maintaining a blog? I can’t get a job because I am not working, but I’m not working because I’ve haven’t been hired yet. What silly logic used to determine the reason not to hire me.

My lack of employment is not equal to my lack of will or my ability to work. I’m ready to go and I have skills at my disposal. Hire me.

The ridiculous part of all of this is the fact that I have been working for three years: working hard to find a job. After all, a job search is supposed to be treated like a job in itself, right?

Thanks for reading!

David

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