Job woes

*Update: Since writing this original post, I have had a completely different experience. Check out my post that came after this one to get the whole story. I didn’t want to completely erase this post, because this was real at the time and I don’t want to tell only part of the story. But this part shows what my mind can do when it’s not given enough information, which is my fault and no one elses.

 

Last week, I applied for a very promising position. I found it on this cool website that resonated with me: Escape the City. The site was started by a group of guys who were fed up with their day jobs and wanted to pursue their passions in life. I am totally digging that. I thought I would expand my horizons and go back to my roots of working in business. Obviously, the Interior Design thing is not working. The job title I applied for was Business Development Executive. They were looking for just 2-3 years of business development. No problem – covered. Adaptable and entrepreneurial? Check. Overall, I was definitely qualified. Wanting to go above and beyond, I sent in my resume, with a cover letter that looked like this:

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I got an email back shortly thereafter requesting that I put together a proposal for how they could build their business. And they wanted it by 9am the next day (it was already noon when I got the email). No problem! I figured it was worthwhile to showcase what I’m capable of. Here is the exact outline for what they were looking for:

The business development team is responsible for generating and developing growth opportunities for notonthehighstreet.com.  
Please propose a new opportunity for the business, indicating how you would develop it and what it would bring to notonthehighstreet.com – for customers, suppliers and financials.  Include 5 suppliers (could be new or existing) which you would want to work with to make this happen.  Feel free to use text and images as you see fit to demonstrate and illustrate your idea.

I spent a lot time and effort to put this together:

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And just to top it off, I added in a video. As embarrassing as this is, I’ve included it below.

I thought it was pretty good. The job had only been posted on Monday, so I must have been one of the first to see it and get everything in. I was feeling pretty confident. Until I got this response:

“Thank you for your interest in becoming our Business Development Executive at notonthehighstreet.com and for submitting your application and task. As you would imagine, the quantity of applications for this role has been very high and we have carefully assessed each one against what we need. I’m sorry to let you know that we will not be taking things any further this time.

We liked your application a lot and feel that you have a great deal to offer. Your task presented an interesting idea and showed good creative thinking. However, there were others whose skills and experience matched what we need more closely. We are a growing business and there could be opportunities in the future which could be a better fit. I would therefore be interested to meet you on an informal basis to discuss your experience further, if you would be keen to do so. Let me know your thoughts and if you would be available to meet for an hour or so in Richmond next week.”

I’m going to sound totally cocky for a couple of seconds, but really, who else put something better than this together in that short of a time span? Secondly, I agreed to get together with her this week to which I got no response. To not even get an interview sort of baffled me. Is it possible that this is just a really great way for them to get tonnes of ideas about how to build their business? The jaded side of me thinks that is a very likely possibility. The other side of me wants to believe that no one would stoop to that. The job is still posted which also has me wondering if they’re still gathering ideas from other “candidates.” She said they had others whose skills better matched what they’re looking for, which leads me to believe that they’ve found the candidate, so why is the job still posted? Or was my presentation really just not good enough, and I’m just making myself feel better?

This whole process is exhausting and frustrating. So now do I keep plugging away? Do I solely focus on Interior Design because at least it is what I love? Or do I continue to expand my scope? I’ve also started going to meet-ups that are more entrepreneurial. If it takes this much effort to get a job, why not just do my own thing? There are some amazing things happening in London. Yesterday, I went to Google Campus, where you can hang out in their cafe and work for free. They hold free seminars and are big about supporting start-ups.

What I do know is that I’m feeling scattered. I feel like I need to decide on a course of action and focus on that one thing. But is that putting all my eggs in one basket?

Really,  I just want to work for Yoo. So far, everything else has just felt like settling. Yoo – are you out there?

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9 thoughts on “Job woes

  1. Submit another crap idea with a generic email. See if it’s just a form letter. Also monitor if they run with your idea. Google them to see if others have the same experience. Perhaps you can figure if they’ve had this posted for months. Sounds fishy to me.

    • Good idea David. I do want to find out if this is happening to other people. I’ve heard back from a few people who all think it sounds odd, so I’m glad it’s not just me!

  2. Dear Tara, your application is really amazing! How they treated you is really weird and I am sure that this was an exception and you will soon find a good job since you really have to offer something. Look at me – you know how my English is and I am just a graduate with a minimum of experience – and even I got started here in London. With your qualifications and experiences you really don’t need to worry! I am pretty sure that you will laugh about those experiences in a couple of weeks and that they will serve you as good anecdotes about how to get started in London. Chin up!

  3. Lots to talk about Tara, and there is no doubt that this company is at best using people and at worst abusing people. Consider sending your blog to the newspaper as an editorial piece. Certainly consider sending it to the CEO of the company calling him or her out.
    Now take a few deep, really deep breaths.
    Where do you want to be in 1, 2, 5 and 10 years?
    There are decisions made based on the 10-10-10 rule.
    How will this impact or affect me in; 10 days, 10 months or 10 years.
    I find that changes how I have an internal or external conversation.
    Love you!
    Dad

  4. You know, your idea is solid. F%^$ them. You put a lot of thought and work into this Tara, and I think you should go with it. What would it take to make this happen? Maybe import them to Canada. We love t-shirts with cool graphics, as does anyone in any country. Their loss, your gain.

  5. Pingback: Oops, my bad | London's Calling this Canuck

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