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Is it that difficult it to return emails?

Every couple of months, I go through this panic. I worry that we will run out of money and will be forced to start living off our savings. I have said that it is coming, but unfortunately, it is now pretty close. I guess the good news is that Brian seems to be on board with our giving no one Christmas presents this year. :-)

I met a friend for lunch yesterday and I told her one of the hardest aspects about the job search and even networking in general is the people who have offered to help but never really did. I neither asked for nor expected anyone to find a job for me. Rather, I thought that the nice former client, former coworker, friend, friend of a friend, etc., might reply to an email I sent. The email might have been a simple question, such as do you know anyone at _______ or can you tell me if your company is hiring or looking for freelance help. Perhaps slightly more work for said non-responder would be an email address for an HR person or a request to use their name (not to say that non-responder recommended me but simply to say that non-responder suggested I talk to hiring person).  Sometimes these people have told me that they will call me to get together or email me with a small project, and then I hear nothing. Other times, we exchange an email or two, and  they never again reply. And I then I debate if I should send another email or call them. Or do nothing. I mean how do you know if the person is just busy, is lousy at communication, has nothing new to tell you, or is hoping you will never contact them again?

Another very difficult job-searching aspect for me is sending out resumes and cover letters for multiple jobs. I realize that this is how it is done now, but I never did this before and I find it very disconcerting. I feel somewhat dishonest saying that I look forward to being part of their team or contributing to their successes when I am going to say something similar to someone else. For the most part, I have applied only for jobs that I am fairly interested in, so it is not as if I am "faking" it. But when the pay and/or hours are not good, in the back of my mind, I am already thinking that this job is a safety net or a last resort. The other odd thing for me is that I am applying for both education- and content-related jobs, which makes me feel as if I have a split personality. How can I want to do both? But I do, though some days I want to do one more than the other or the other not at all. Add to that my indecision about doing freelance work (I like it, but the work is too sporadic, which financially scares me) and my head is pretty much swimming.

But I guess I will just try to keep swimming. And hope that others will jump in the pool with me or at least throw me a floaty when I need it.

Comments

Sherri said…
I hear ya on this. I think it is not so much a reflection on you as it is the climate in the job market - i.e. every man / woman for him / herself. Sad but true.
Facie said…
I am hopeful you are mostly correct, but in some cases, I am not so sure. I have emailed just "regular" people and have not heard back. They don't have to sift through 1000s of resumes. And if they are that busy (I know most workers are today), then just reply to my email saying so. In my mind, that is the right thing to do and it won't take much time. But b/c people so often don't, I am left to wonder if they never got my email, if they truly are busy and want to wait for the time to craft a thoughtful response/look into what I asked, or if they just don't want to respond for various reasons.

A perfect example is this school where I tried to sub last year. The last email exchange was from the spring when the secretary said they have enough subs. I sent a check-in email on Monday, b/c it is a new school year and things can change. Never heard back. How hard would it be for the secretary to reply "We are have enough subs this year." She would not even have to add something nice.

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