Real Reason Unemployed

The Real Reason You’re Still Unemployed

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There’s a saying that “holding onto anger is like drinking poison and hoping someone else will die.” This couldn’t apply more for the over 40 and unemployed or long term unemployed.

Many people are willing to tell you what to do when moving forward in your job search with little understanding or regard for circumstances of the reason you are out there looking.

Whether you left quietly or went all “Jerry Maguire” on your ex-employer when you were terminated or laid off, you have unresolved emotions like confusion, anger, hurt, and bitterness. This is the “poison” you are drinking.

The REAL Reason You’re Still Unemployed

These unresolved emotions are affecting your ability to get hired whether you realize it or not. When you have questions about why you are unemployed it is hard to be focused on getting hired.

When you attend an interview it comes out in your answers. When you don’t get yet another job, your situation deepens. When you end up being unemployed longer than you had planned it gets magnified. And the cycle continues.

You need to STOP doing what you are doing – right now. Stop feeding this beast of anxiety, confusion, shame, and depression by continuing to apply for job after job and not getting the result you are looking for – to get hired.

Once you have stopped what isn’t working I want you to find a friend, a spouse, or a confidant and talk to them about the way you feel. It’s time to bury the past and find resolution. You won’t be able to get answers from your previous employers or companies that have chosen not to select you, but I want you to find confidence in the things you can control. The things you love and want to do, the value you bring and what you require in return from a company to be successful, long term.

You need to forgive the people that are responsible for your “current” situation. Deal with your emotions, forgive them and then tie a bow around it and put it in the past. Make a promise to yourself that “they” can and will not affect your job search. Do your own “internal shuffle” and take the power you are giving them back and invest it in yourself.

“To be wronged is nothing, unless you continue to remember it.” – Confucius

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Corey Harlock

Corey Harlock, founder of Skills to Achieve, created the Fearless Job Seeker System to teach everyone what only a few job seekers know about how to get hired.

49 comments

  1. The reason that one is still unemployed is directly related to the number of jobs being created in the economy which is directly related to the maldistribution of income and wealth in the United States and to a large degree in much of the developed world. Similar distribution as a percentage of GDP occurred in 1929 and in 2008. In a consumption based economy a larger portion of national income will need to be distributed to those lower in the economic percentiles. in order to generate employment and increase consumption. When this occurs the above listed reasons will become inconsequential. As it stands if everyone followed the above advice and corrected their interviewing and networking issues, unemployment numbers will continue to be very much the same as they are now. The implication in the article is really more about how to become a better candidate so as to improve ones chances of employment rather than explaining why an individual is unemployed. Unemployment is a macroeconomic condition.

  2. i feel so sad every time i think of the time wasted for having no job.. its like crying all the time but one thing is for sure, is that i don’t give up though its been a year since then i still find reasons not to give up.. i just keep on reading books that will inspire me.. But a time like this made me realize the reality of life the value of time and to be much closer with God.. :) have a great day every one..

  3. Its amazes me how all of a sudden after 30+ years working and all of a sudden we are told 85% of us cannot interview
    It is simply an attack on the middle aged employee , The government need all them young people with them nice degree’s to pay back their student loans and the wise and middle class will not generate a return because we don’t have student loans , SO this means the Supreme Court in 2009 made it official that it’s OK to discriminate age and that was the beginning to the end of older Experienced workers , There are other factors that are out there too, so I don’t want to sound focused on one. The only thing that I have found in the past 5 years was to be willing to accept reality and contract myself out to jobs that CANNOT be outsourced to another country , Trust me if a Business can outsource you job they will , Lower wages and young managers with degrees are following the upper food chain in this and we in the middle just don’t fit that anymore , So age discrimination was the only thing holding back Companies from implementing this “concept” and we watched it take 30 years to finally come to a head , Think I am kidding , go back and look at every historical event that leads to this destruction of the middle class , it was by design and now the only thing left for use to do is play the game of working for whatever you can muster up , since they have taking the wealth of the middle class , we really don’t have any power or money to fight this sick money making scheme for business.

    • I’ve been looking for a job since June of 2013. I get interviews, but, when they see how old I am, that’s the end of the story. I dress well, clean cut, shaved, bathed, but still now job. I get, sometimes, if, they reply at all, something to the effect “we have decided to pursue other candidates that will be closer to our needs” or something very similar. I’m 59 and have 30 years IT experience. I see who the hire in some places, and it’s the 21 year old “know it all”.

      I don’t understand why my experience is not worth something. Am I totally useless at my age? I have done things in IT that the younger kids don’t have a clue about. What gives?

      They finally stated on the news this week that unemployment was a major problem in the US today.
      Well heck, it’s about time. Just because you no longer draw unemployment, does not mean you have found a job. The numbers do no represent me and other like me that are still looking but can’t find anything.

      • Mark,

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        If you have any other questions, please feel free to let me know. I am here to help!

  4. Four years ago May, I moved in with mom because I was unemployed, broke AND hurt( I had arthritis issues and couldnt walk.) The good news was that by the end of the year I had a job(a walking all day job) and I could do it taking supplements. I had to do a self inventory before this and forgive some people who had wronged me. This was so huge. The job came a month later. I was able to keep this job for almost 2 years before getting laid off. I was saving my money to move out but ended up needing it to live. The layoff was “good” in a way because I got to spend time practicing piano and working out(adding strength has helped immensely deal with RA). I didnt play much during prev job. Still playing piano, looking for work, and have moved out of mom’s. I highly recommend doing a self-inventory, checks on: attitude, mistakes made, bitterness, resentment, not sleeping too much(6-8 hrs), having good eating habits, having good social time with friends, spending time in The Word(the Bible), serving others(get your mind off yourself and your problems. There are worse things out there than my problems.) Some people dont have what I have. Oh, acknowledge God’s grace in your life. Without Him, you wouldnt have what you have, there wouldnt be you! The end.

    • Ya its all about growing yourself in character and giving your 100% and persevere in meekness of people you interact with, so ya that’s good that you still believe in God, cause we can only trip ourselves, but if the aim is to be the higher self, I think asking that quality question that changes you so much that you feel you can serve the world but know again and again that to serve is starting small and never really expecting anything in return.

      Like I’m going through just what your going, that is if you found a job! Great if you did, stay in it as long as possible and keep your cool

      Quality questions
      Such as “who needs me more?”
      Is their bit something I can do, to make the world a better place, I give
      And even if they take advantage or abuse it, can you still love them anyways?

      Also I lost trust with family, but am willing to gain their love back and I love my family still and they love me, just means all the more reason to serve my family before serving others like friends or Which yes it can be paradox sometimes to do that but the whole point is to proclaim God’s Word to all people, even you have doubts, for God accepts a honest doubter and God has given lots of time to BE ALL YOU CAN BE

    • I get you! I am 56 and not the “next new thing”. I have been there and I know that some young college grad has only one thing on me: youth. So what. With things being the way they are, I play up my strengths: I need very little training because I am a quick study, a problem solver, and ” that’s not my job” is not in my vocabulay. I finally found a job. Is is a great job? Nope. Will it cover my monthly expenses? No. It is not even full time, but I am back in the game. I have never been out of work for this long, but I am back in the game

  5. - Since HR can look up almost anything on the internet, why not put our age on our resume for them, after all they must be working very hard these days rejecting so many resumes. Oh, I forgot, most of that is done by a machine too. … Cheers!

  6. Wow – what a great conversation!

    I have a couple of points here.

    First of all, thank you to everyone who “get’s it in a big way,” and helping spread the message.

    Secondly. Any conversation is great – positive or negative. it makes us think and challenge what we are doing. It is all positive to me.

    I believe in being honest and direct with you because this is your life! Your ability to provide for yourself and your family. So my information is designed to get this type of response – thank you for caring enough to voice your opinion.

    Here is a video chat I did where we talk about the importance of dealing with your past: http://skillstoachieve.com/s2aacademy/get-a-new-job-by-dealing-with-your-past

    Be Fearless & Stay Inspired!

    • Hi Corey,

      I just finished viewing your conversation online. All I have to say is – wow! It was very informative and is a must see for all 40 and over unemployed job seekers. Even though I’m not 40 yet (I’ll join the crowd this year), I found many of the points you guys covered to prove definitely helpful as well. Thank you for sharing this link.

  7. I just started a Hangout on Google + for people that are over 40 and in IT and I am going to start a group on Linked-In as well. If anybody is so inclined and would like to join. Feel free

    Kevin Douglas Berg – Linked-In Profile
    Group is going to Over 40 and Looking for IT Roles
    – we can discuss what we are all going through
    – I will also post things that I find to help, assist, get us over the hump and onto better days

    I wish you good luck in the very near future.

    Thank you

    Kevin

  8. This is a pretty good article which spurred interesting commentary. I didn’t appreciate Anthony’s attack on Unemployed’s position; it’s one thing to disagree; it’s another to stoop low and publicly assail him. He could have simply explained, in response, why he disagrees with Unemployed’s stance on the article and how indeed the information it contained was helpful. I’m going to turn 40 this year (time has been flying by) and am presently unemployed. I think, in the very few interviews I landed in recent times, I came across as perhaps overly needy (spoke at a fast clip) which in turn turned off the interviewers. I’m not one to support any form of welfare, but I feel, in this critical time in our nation (the U.S.), that it’d be nice if free counseling was provided to the long-term unemployed; it could be done over the phone or on the Internet through Chat. As you say, some people are angry, confused and hurt; I think this experience has negatively affected the psyche of many otherwise accomplished professionals who can’t wait to rejoin the workforce. If there were counselors who could help reshuffle their emotions constructively, that’d be great. It’s true; going on interviews can draw parallel comparisons to dating. It sounds like many, including myself, feel like (speaking as a guy) various ladies who we asked out have turned us down or stood us up.

    • When did Americans switch to the insane notion that you can’t or shouldn’t call a person out for having a bad attitude? When did the “it’s not possibly my fault mind set start driving our society? Please help me figure out this overwhelming acceptance of the “I’m entitled and the oh me oh my” syndrome take place.

      George you didn’t appreciate my comments and I can accept that. Most people can’t appreciate in your face criticism. Coincidentaly, most people that are unemployed will at some point in time land smack dab in the middle of this. I didn’t stoop low in my assesment of “Unemployed” attitude. He publicly assailed him or herself the moment the reply button was hit. Understand this George and anyone else who has a problem with being critiqued: you’re being critiqued at every turn and the hiring manager, HR person, employment consultant, or family member who doesn’t point out your weaknesses doesn’t care much about your position in life.

      I get paid to understand the process of interviewing, hiring, and goal setting and its a tough business for one primary reason: people are overly sensitive to being called on their weaknesses. If you or Unemployed were guaranteed to raise your success rate by 25% for just changing your attitude, why wouldn’t you eagerly jump at the chance to get that info?

      Its apalling for the state of the economy that so many unemployed candidates don’t want to know how they can get better, they just want to be made to “feel good”. Go back and read the article, then read “Unemployed’s” comment, and then read what I actually wrote devoid of your “feelings” and see if you can get the point. If not, the industry as a whole has some very bad news for you my friend.

  9. HR looks up your age on the internet. I’m not on any social media sites but the people finder sites have my age and part of my address.

  10. Wow, just reading the comments is making much more sense. Since I am frustrated on the job search and tweaking my resumes. I applied 3x’s at this hotel that have been posting their ads since last summer. I did get a response but for some reason..one thing missing is the hotel experience but the rest of what their looking for I have.

    • it may help Medallion01, if you put a Skills box at the top of your resume, then in your cover letter use a chart to show what they are looking for in one column, and in the next column note the positions you have held that did exactly that, or similar to what they are looking for. Explain in regular cover letter format that you wanted to help them see how your experience aligns with what they are looking for. Remove anything that doesn’t fit their need. Change your verbs to reflect the verbs they use in their ad. Make sure you are using the name of the person you are sending the letter to in the address. Once you have applied online, hand deliver one of your resumes to them at the hotel. Dress at least business casual.
      Good luck!

  11. It definitely is harder today and more important than ever to have strong network connections to get the leads, and to stand up for you, for the job openings. Of course we have to be perceived also as the best candidate among many–if we make the interview cycle.

    No two candidates are alike nor two interviews. Some candidates wear defeat and hear so much advice from so many people, they’re naturally confused. Same for “professional resume preparers” and “Career coaches” etc–all over the board and many not worth the paper they write on–never mind tapping money from a stone. And some candidates–simply do not listen to any advice, they already know it all. This is true also on older candidates who simply do not want to bother looking more polished and professional. (Take me as I am or don’t take me at all mindset). I have seen it all, including people who are intolerant and don’t want this or don’t want that, and seem to not actually be looking for a job in today’s market. Thanks for advise, and all the candid comments people shared here–its’ all helpful to me (and the rest of us!)

  12. Check out Careerfuel.net — more interesting perspectives on career changing and interviewing.

    Lots of my friends have been in this type of situation, and visibly being in pain is only ONE of many causes. Think the root is, as someone said, not enough demand… but interviewing skills are another. Some people just aren’t great interviewers… on both sides of the desk.

    Getting a job is a sales job itself, and not everybody is a networker, or a creative prospecter or a proficient presenter. Or is somebody’s nephew, to make a joke that’s a little bit true sometimes. And in another sales truism, the moment you look like you NEED the sale, is the minute the sale isn’t going to happen. And not everyone is an ACTOR.

    Only answer is to ASK FOR HELP from friends, relatives, former co-workers and not to give up. And not to be ashamed. EVERYBODY has either been there, or will be someday. And to HANG IN and KEEP TRYING. And check your breath and try to have fun.

    Dang… this is sort of like dating challenges. Need to take my own advice!

  13. Wow, reading the comments are hard. There are so many people who really do not understand what the article is trying to tell you. I am a Recruiter and I have worked for some great companies over the past several years. I was laid off in 2008 and since then have been working steadily as a contract recruiter. I AM the person you will meet when you come in for an interview, and if you come in with 1)distain for your former employer 2) anger or distrust or defeat all of that shows when you speak to someone like me.

    YOU HAVE TO do you best to put forward a illusion that you are all put together no matter what your situation may be when you leave that building.

    In regards to the person that said “No interviews = problem with skills or resume.

    No offer after interviews = poor fit or salary issues is incorrect. The job market is extremely competitive and just becasue you do not get a call does not mean you have bad skills or a bad resume. Even CEO’s have awful resumes trust me I look at those type of resumes/cv’s all day. It is not always poor fit or salary issues, there are so many areas a company will weigh a candidates employability that it goes back to what I said previously…IT’S VERY COMPETITIVE NOW.

    Find a way to shine, find a way to stand out find a way to impress whomever you are meeting with. if you dont’ have all the skills you should have, that recrutier/hiring manager may be a champion for you because you have the right attitude or mindset. Remember it is not always about skill. It’s more attitude and adaptability.

    • Carmen, As a recruiter, do you have any recommendations how candidates can get their resumes past the screening software so they will be read by an actual person?

  14. It feels great to see we all share the same pain of looking for the next move. I found in my months of unemployment that you need to work your mental and keep doing what you enjoy most. Having no savings and no benefit, I and my 2 kids fully rely on my poor wife’s salary and we do struggle. I was dismissed without any explanation and after having been praised for an excellent work. I put it to destiny and try and focus on positives to relentlessly apply day after day as my turn will come one day as it came in the past. Although it might be more difficult this time given the recession. So guys, keep doing sports, arts or any extra you put in your CV to refresh your brains and try other routes.

    Just to avoid going nuts in december, I took a courier job which cost me more than it provided. I stopped now but felt great again for some time. Now, I am considering studying again and go into teaching where unemployment is lower than my area (for now). Good luck to All.

  15. This article really hits home and I have a few things that might be the reason over-all of what is happening to people that are similar to myself. I am “over 40.”

    The causes for the over 40 unemployed people is due to the following things

    1) Experienced Professionals like myself would expect a salary according to work experience. This is due to the fact that we all think we are worth it. This assumption is basically right in a good economy. Unfortunately we are in a recession, spin the numbers anyway you would like to, but more people are dropping out because they have given-up on looking altogether.

    Additionally, all healthcare costs are going up. So unlike a single person that is in their 20’s which would get lowest wage but also have the lowest healthcare costs as well.

    2) Flood of other people looking for work and willing to do the work at a lower cost which is good for the firms due to them wanting to shore-up their capital. The shoring-up is due to all of the unseen financial implications that might or might not be coming due to the current administration.

    3) There are and there is algorithms that really do screen out people and for myself that does not have the IT Degree background when attempting to apply for these jobs, I am sure that my resume has been not even looked at.

    4) Employers are not attempting to do business in so many unknowns, want people that are fresh and want the ability to train them. When someone comes in with experience and knowledge, it is at times unsettling to those that are new in Managerial Positions and the like.

    I feel that the way that the author was talking as if there is something incoherently wrong with those that are over 40 and jobless. Like the saying says “Try walking a mile in my shoes.”

    That is just my 2 cents for what it is worth. I am twitter as well attempting to get a job in the IT/QA/Writing/Sales/PR field.

    Kevin Berg
    kdbitprofessional004@gmail.com

    • I like your 2 cents and I can understand and relate in your comment(s). Just turned “40”, laidoff and unemployed last year,experienced professional and the like. Old mindset must adapt to the different times and generation of today.

      Thanks for the breakdown.

    • There are many of us “over 40s” who have been out of work for a year or longer. As Kevin points out, it is not necessarily because we have unresolved anger issues, although that may be true in some cases. Most of us are facing the unacknowledged age discrimination that is prevalent in the work place. I have been freelancing to help keep up with the bills while I look for a “permanent” full-time position. I’ve reached the point in my job search that I am seriously considering giving up the job search and diving head first into full-time freelancing.

  16. It is a challenge to read the comments of others as they hit close to home. One thing that has frustrated me in this process (and the article already mentioned this) is that after you reach out to ask why you were not selected for the position seeking to have understanding for the next opportunity, employers will not say why (probably concerned of a potential lawsuit) and send a generic form letter. The majority of times, you never hear back at all. And then there is the issue of being discriminated for long-term unemployment. Just like age discrimination, what can you ultimately do about it? There is no denying it exists. I can go on and on but it’s the same stories I read over and over. There are so many emotions that go with all of this. We are all in different places but one thing for certain is that without my faith in God, I would be in a much different place. This is all temporary in the end. A blink of an eye. Gone. And none of this will matter. Reminding myself that this is temporary has helped me get through one day at a time and some days one hour at a time. God bless all of you.

  17. You know, I was with my previous company just a week shy of a decade. Ten years of my life, from 32 years old to 42 years old.

    4 years ago I was Employee of the Year. 3 years ago I got a promotion.

    Things were going great. I bought a house and a car… a year later I was laid off for no good reason. My manager couldn’t even speak to me for 2 days before the layoff. He couldn’t even do the deed himself.

    I’ve lost the house to foreclosure. We (My wife of 23 years, my 16 year old daughter and my 18 year old autistic son) have moved in with my wife’s parents. We’re living in the garage. I’ve been unemployed for 2 years now.

    I can’t say that given the opportunity I wouldn’t punch him in the mouth or kneecap him at the golf course.

    I suppose that’s the point of the article.

  18. This was not helpful at all. The reason people are unemployed is because many of the firms that once employed many are not hiring. Period. We’ve been in a horrible job recession for 5 years now.

    • The attitude in which you responded says alot about you as a person. While I certainly don’t agree with most of this article the hopeful premise behind it is for job seekers to take a good long look at their attitudes while seaqrching. (Something you should have done before posting your comment)

      One fact that most people are reluctant or incapable of looking at is that 85% or more of the people interviewing for a job don’t know how to interview. To make matters worse, most managers dont know how to interview either. So you take the two ignorances and it creates a cycle that leads to long term unemployments across the US.

      Companies have been hiring all through this recession. The only thing that has really changed is the fact that these companies are taking longer to pull the trigger on candidates. Granted, there are a number of reasons for this but that isn’t an excuse to blame the recession, companies, or whatever else. The interview process lies with the person being interviewed to a large degree and with a bad attitude you’re already half way to failure.

      • Your reply to ‘unemployed’ assumed he had a poor attitude, whereas he was just pointing out a simple fact. This, in turn,says alot about you as a person, one who appears to be quick to judge, and make questionable assumptions.

        • WillD –

          Your response demonstrates a few things: A. You don’t tend to read with an understanding. B. You’re excuse driven C. You’re not good at accepting responsibility.

          What part of “Unemployed” comment didn’t scream Excuse Driven? What did I need to assume with “Unemployed” emphatically saying “This wasn’t helpful at all.”? Where is the facts in the statement “The reason people are unemployed is…”?

          Unemployed didn’t point out any facts what so ever. Instead of taking a look internally he or she blamed. as I said in the original comment, the authors hope was that candidates take a good look at their own attitudes before doing anything else. What gives you the impression that happened with “Unemployed”?

          Another fact of life WillD is this – As people and individuals we get judged on the things we say, do, believe, and think. Period. As a candidate, if you’re entering into your search with the wrong mindset (the oh me oh my or I can’t do anything differently) you’re already screwed.

          Now regardless if you or unemployed is mentaly tough enough to be judged is a different question but I would suggest that you take a good long look at why you think I was making questionable judgments against “Unemployed”.

          I didn’t say what I said to make unemployed feel good or bad. I stated a fact based on the comment left. I tend not to worry about my feelings when I’m unemployed. I focus on getting employed, staying employed, and increasing my value at the company I’m with to minimize the chances of me being unemployed again. I’d rather have a harsh judgement with the knowledge to do better than a tissue full of tears and someones pitty.

  19. Thank you to everyone for having the courage to share – I appreciate it.

    Find the time to dig deep into what you love and want to do, where you want to do it and what you need in return to perform at a high level.

    What I am saying is STOP making your past employer or hiring manager’s part of your equation.

    Reclaim your confidence and control of the process by “knowing thyself.”

  20. I understand what the article is saying. Believe me when I say it is easier said than done. I have not only tried to find jobs which would take my transferrable skills and talents. I have also tried to go temporary and part-time, only to learn I would not be able to interview for the truly fitting position, due to schedule conflicts: With a temporary job, you need to be able to stay on assignment, and a part-time position does not guarantee a set schedule. All of this combined causes so much frustration, chaos, etc., it makes a person go dizzy.

    Then to top it all off, when you are interviewed, you are asked the question, “Why is it taking so long for you to find work with your impressive background?”

    EXCUSE ME?!?!?!?

    You explain everything to them, and it is as though the interviewer is still thinking you do not try hard enough, or you do not have the determination and will power they are wanting.

    I feel as though they are wanting to, have their cake and eat it too. They need to realize if they eat too much of this big cake, they may need the insulin for their diabetes. (No Offense Intended.)

    • You’re giving interviewers to much credit. 7-10 times the person interviewing you doesn’t have a real clue about the practice or purpose of interviewing. (This goes for the hiring manangers as well)At the same time, candidates have become entitled in some ways. Candidates think and or believe the interview should go a specific way because thats how they want it to go. Sorry, not going to happen.

      Your history, while partially relevant, has very little to do with your ability to fill certain positions. Your attitude does though.

      Also, everything is pretty much easier said than done. The trick is to always be cognizant of your attitude moving in and out of your day to day actions.

      • Should I interpret your comment to say 7 out fo 10 times the interviewer does not have a real clue about the practice, or purpose of interviewing? I agree completely.

        With the interviews I have experienced, I have completely respected the format, or the method they have set for themselves. After all they have their methods to follow, in order to make the best decisions.

        My main point is, when you maintain a positive attitude during the interview conversation, and you provide examples, then ask if they would like any other details to show more results, and you feel as though everything went well enough to influence them to progress onward with you, there is still a possibility of something else behind the scenes.

        There could be an internal candidate, or someone they have already pre-planned to bring in,and they still need to follow with EEOC guidelines. There could be something, you were unaware of becoming another part of the job description,which you need to discuss, but were not prepared for. There could be many different scenarios preventing someone from hiring me. There is always a time limit, which prevents the company from seeing the complete package.

        It has pretty well come down to you need to know someone to make it through. Otherwise,you will be spinning your wheels, and need to start all over. It reminds me of the movie “Groundhog’s Day”.

        • I can agree with your perception and absolutely agree with your emotions torward the process.

          You and I could discuss this for another 6 months and the outcomes would still be different because interviewing is such a fluid process. Its fluid because for every open job there are three people at a minimum behind the job. You have HR, the hiring manager, and then you have that persons manager off in the shawdows. Each one of these people have a process defined or not and they impose that process onto you.

          As a candidate, if you don’t enter into the process with a defined and adaptable plan, you’ve cut your channces down by at least 40%.

  21. I can only speak to my situation/s. I have only been let go a couple of times. As I reflect back to the situations, the one job was not a good fit, and the other, the employer had another vision, and no matter how good I was, I was not wanted/needed. Ironically, the second situation ultimately was due to someone else losing some expensive inventory, a change of business focus and a bad economy. When I was let go the employer asked me, “What are you going to tell people the reason YOU left our company?”. The boss constantly stated while working with them was that I was “an expensive luxury, and a very good one at that!”

    I had to look for every good and valuable thing I did, and accurately promote it even though I struggled with failure. It is very difficult in an industry where everyone knows everyone. If anyone had a hint you lost your job, or were even just considering looking for a job, everyone knew because word would get out that you were looking.

    Believe me…I discovered that even a résumé can reveal the hidden struggles. Until I faced the real issues head on, and “promoted” what I did good and could offer, I had difficulty creating a good résumé and being comfortable in employment interview situations.

  22. Well written and relatable. I have experienced all of three emotions listed in this article, and it’s a relief my emotions are validated, because friends, family who do not have money or job issues con’t understand.. it feels like a slow death when job after job search, iand interview goes sour, and I haven’t smiled for the past 3 or 4 years…explains a lot. Thanks for the insightful advice.

    • Your blanket comment ‘No interviews = problem with skills or resume’ is just that, and fairly presumptuous. If i were only ha cu and dry.

      You totally disregard much of what can be the cause. From HR scanning programs (even if you spend the time with ‘word clouds’…will a person even ever see your skill?), to hiring managers prejudging based on age and experience (this person won’t be happy in this position, this person won’t work for this pay), the fact many online applications are asking for salary information up front, and so many factors that play into just getting through the info clutter to an interview.

      I hate to say it, but your comment is kinda what feeds the ‘staying angry and confused’ fire.

        • Thank you, Mrs T! I have prepared every one of my resumes with a career counselor, using the job description to guide us, and I haven’t gotten a single interview. Perhaps it’s my age. Perhaps someone has already been hired and the job posting is out there because of some company rule. It’s perplexing. Not helping matters is that I am VP-level, where there are fewer jobs. If I apply for lower-level positions, I may be viewed as overqualified (read, too expensive, although I don’t care about the $ so much at this point). Yes, posts that blame me for having a problem resume brings back the anger and confusion.

  23. This is relevant only if “you” are being regularly interviewed yet not receiving an offer. The first step is to be interviewed and for many that is not happening.

    • The reason a majority of people are not being interviewed is two fold.

      1. 80% (or higher) of resumes should be burned and scattered in the wind. (Yes. It is just that bad. Most people could write a valid resume in an hour if you offered them a $500 reward for doing so in 6o mins.)

      2. Corporate America has come to rely too heavily on algorithms. At some point in the last 10 years, companies seem to think that word programs are a better judge of a live person. It is one of the great injustices of our time I believe.

      Now I realize that reason number one will not, dare I say cannot sit well with most of us. Thats simply because most people can’t handle criticism. We take it as an indictment of sorts and fail to honestly assess our failures and thus fail to correct them.

      If you are not being interviewed regularly for positions that you are indeed qualified for, you are either not applying enough or your resume is holding you back.

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