For the sake of appearances and to keep a healthy air of mystique about things we are going to call today’s correspondent Alex, Martin. ‘Martin’ wrote to me to ask if I might not like coming to work for him in Colchester. He noted, in the email, that Manchester (where I live) is a very long way from Colchester and that I might be reluctant to leave everything (my Kodak three-in-one printer) behind just for a job selling Applicant Trackers.
In the event of my not wanting to then at least I should take heart from the fact that ‘there are people out there who encourage personality within business’
Nice to know!
‘As well as encouraging absolute client focus’ he added.
During our correspondence ‘absolute’ escalated into ‘unflinching’ client focus.
Unflinching client focus presumably being the species of client focus whereby you’re more intimate with your client’s needs than he himself is thanks to your conducting 24 hour in-person surveillance of your client from the bottom of his garden. A focus so extraordinary that it is only in the taxi away from your 14:00 face-to-face that he realises – your client, nestled into the backseat of the cab – realises that what you palpably smelled of during the meeting was his garden and his wife – too consumed, in the 14:00, by the nuclear intensity of your gaze and the can of WD40, giftwrapped, that you gave him to quiet the squeak of his bedroom door, to quite place the smell.
Aside from Martin’s questionable choice of words he was very nice and kind.
She had spunk.
Anyway those days are gone: I visited Martin’s site to take a look at what he sold – an applicant tracker, which is a curious piece of software used by recruiters everywhere -and I emailed him.
Colchester is a long way away.
One of the many functions of the twin-front-ended applicant tracker (alongside cataloguing CVs and the auto-dissemination of job adverts and rejection letters) is the automatic screening of applications like the applications I write.
Martin, it seems, has a healthy sense of irony.
It’s been a while.
Looking great, as ever.
Hey, remember Dannii?
You know, Daniiii, from two.
Well she wrote back to me the other day: turns out she’s not some terrible witch but a nice young girl who likes cats and video games. She apologised for the delay in reply and for being such a sourpuss (she was in a job that she hated also) and offered to embark on a one woman crusade to find me the job I deserve.
She was very sweet and funny and nice.
Before all this further hoo-hah, I wrote back to her.
Things have picked up significantly since.
So much so that on Monday I found myself in Quality Save buying discount aqueous cream filled suddenly full of a happiness I’d come to believe was only achievable by chemical means.
It was nice.
I’m a lot less comfortable sharing happinesses than their obverse and sorry if this is all a bit of a drag to hear.
Where have I been?
I went to London, for a while. Not nearly long enough to explain my absence from here but still, a while – my entire haul a £200 cheque addressed to one Mr. Benedict Le Gauche – problematic for reasons that need no explanation. Aside from that boon, London didn’t work out. It was a blow and I’ve been trying to write it out for too long now and sorry.
I should declare it dead and sneak up on its corpse maybe.
Other than that I have been putting heart and soul into the caretaking.
The day before yesterday, when sweeping out the yard at work, I found in the corner amidst the wet wipes, the crisp packets and red clay of the crumbling building itself, the beaded eyes of a pigeon in the last throes of life.
Yesterday I scraped the remains of same pigeon (minus pigeon-soul), from the ground with a shovel, whilst a tramp changed his trousers on the bench that we-for-no-reason have in the yard.
The tramp refused to return my hello or my offer of cigarette or even the theatrical nod I gave him to indicate that we were both human beings and what were doing ran alongside the natural course of things and was nothing to be ashamed of.
He had different ideas, perhaps.
I paraboled the pigeon into the bin from ten full yards, thinking he’d appreciate one last flight.
My life is my life whether I like it or not.
Shan’t be caretaking for long though, as you’ve read.
I think the redundancy is a great present, for Christmas.
I don’t quite know how they’re going to wrap it.
Oh no, I do.
A lot of people have been directed to my site via various search engine queries, here are some of my favourites:
Also, mother has advised that I monetise the site with adverts. I fucking hate adverts. And though this is probably the sole way I’m ever going to make money from this and though I know wordpress sometimes sneak adverts onto the pages and pays me nothing for the pleasure, I fucking hate adverts. I don’t want people to even have to ignore adverts like I do on my ‘free’ version of Microsoft word.
I have gone to the length though, of adding a donation button on the ‘hello’ page of the website. I do not at all expect you to give me anything but you may if you feel compelled to.
It’s nice to clear Dannii’s name.
I think we’re back up and running.
For being such a good sport:
Here’s to you, Sonia.
p.s. this blog has been nominated for the Manchester Blog Awards and if you like you can vote for it here. It’s in the ‘best writing on a blog category’.
p.p.s. I will one day tell you what London was like.
A post today to say thankyou to everyone that’s commented and said such nice things.
It means ever so much to me and I’m afraid that this might make me one of those people who think that the internet is real life.
But that’s life.
Or the internet.
I just don’t know any more.
I’m going to write back when I can but I might not be able to for a bit because this week I am on a work placement and whilst I’m sure I will tell you all about it one day I am, for a week or two, going to be (!!!!) very busy.
I am not so used to being busy.
I am tired already.
Also I’m sorry about all the crude pictures.
Mother has expressed concern that the ‘victims’ of the cutting and the pasting have all been women and is a bit worried.
I promise I will never graft one stranger’s head onto another strangers body ever again.
See you soon!
On to Raise Your Glasses to Sonia Elks ?
Hello new readers!
You are looking SWELL.
It’s best to start with the CV (or resume).
And then the site’s all yours, though I’d recommend starting somewhere near the beginning, obviously.
These falling into the Joe Pesci category: short and punchy.
Ok so today’s is an exercise in researching your employer and keeping it personal.
On to COVERING LETTERS THREE?
Hello Reader. It looks like the Summer is nearly over doesn’t it? Goodbye Summer! And as Autumn closes his papery hand around us I think we should take a look at covering letters. Why the hell not?
Over the next few days I’m going to be sharing with you a few different approaches to the cover letter. One a day, lets say.
Here’s today’s: I read on the Guardian Careers website only yesterday that a good covering letter should be composed as if it were a love letter where you, the applicant, are pleading to hold the employers hand or kiss him on the lips or ask him tenderly to pull down his trousers (substitute ‘her’ as appropriate). A nice idea I thought. One with enviable legs.
On to COVERING LETTERS 2 ?
Applications to graduate schemes have been invariably unsuccessful.
I think it is time for a change of tact.
I’ve been mulling over changes to the CV since the Dannii episode and have received droves of advice over the course of this process – keep the CV to two pages, don’t fucking swear, be less personal and forthright and so on. But the most monumental of advice came from Louise, who I exchanged emails with back in July. In the following email, where Louise refers to the mime email, I do not know what she is talking about.
The new CV can be found on ‘the CV’ tab above.
I’ll be reporting back next week to let you know if it fares any better with the prospective employers.
On to COVERING LETTERS 1 ?