Archive for Employment Qualifications

Casual Employment

It’s been nine months since I last wrote here. During that time, I experienced an ersatz promotion from my in-office employer. I was made Content Lead for an Eastern European division of a particular client’s training program. I was in charge of putting together their training content. Then I moved on to a Central European country’s training project, and then another. Once complete, I was assigned a South American training project. But, due to financial reasons, was told that all “casual” employees (of which I was one) had their hours cut to zero. Many full-time employees were let go permanently. It was a mass layoff. This, apparently, is common at said Casual Employer Inc.

And, so, I am once again at home, working on freelance projects and keeping my dog company. All of my children are away at college, and my home echos with their absence.

Despite my initial challenges with handling all-day, in-office employment, I miss the purpose I felt driving their each day. And I admit to enjoying the camaraderie I felt with several co-workers. My dog doesn’t like chatting, and our ideas of going out to lunch aren’t the same.

Looking for permanent employment is proving challenging this time around. I was very fortunate last time, applying for one of the first jobs I saw, and then being offered the job. Easy come, easy go. I’ll take the challenge.

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Renaissance Woman

Once again, CareerBuilder.com is playing fast and loose with their interpretation of “qualifications.” Although I’m flattered that they think I’m this much of a Renaissance Woman, I don’t come close to being qualified for any of these positions. Here are my suggested job applications for this week:

  • solar cell design engineer
  • material scientist chemical engineer
  • lead teacher – early childhood education/preschool
  • registered dietician
  • real estate sales associate
  • recreation assistant
  • product surveillance specialist

and, my personal favorite:

  • cryptologic linguist for the US Army

I’ve received phone calls and email messages from head hunters and job placement agencies, desperate to place me in one of their open positions. I had no idea I was so marketable! Unfortunately, the vast majority of these “offers” don’t come close to resembling jobs for which I’m qualified. It seems these humans can’t accurately assess an applicant’s qualifications any better than automated online databases such as CareerBuilder can.

Although, they may be on to something here. I am a mom. And, as such, have gathered and honed a wide variety of skills I might not otherwise have come close to. For example, when my children were younger, I worked from home and was able to spend a lot of time with them. I was their lead teacher in so many things: feeding and dressing themselves, toilet training, sharing, language skills, writing their names, creative play, and so on.  As my household’s resident material scientist chemical engineer, I was responsible for identifying mysterious chemical combinations all over the house: crayon wall murals, missed toileting opportunities, and the sippy cup full of milk left behind the couch for three days,  for starters. I also created chemical concoctions such as salt dough and slime, providing hours of play.

As a solar cell design engineer, I was responsible for calculating the amount of solar light my charges absorbed, and applying protective layers of sunblock to them as necessary. Like a registered dietician, one of my main goals was setting up menus, creating nutritious meals, and getting my kids to eat more than apple juice and Teddy Grahams. I performed the duties of recreation assistant by bringing my kids to tee-ball, playing hopscotch with them, and organizing play dates. As my household’s real estate sales associate, I assisted in coordinating the tasks involved in building a home, such as choosing flooring, exterior covering, and window types. I identified paint colors and other home improvements that would maintain the “saleability” of our home and made them happen. My skills in the product surveillance industry include maintaining the quality of my products by keeping them healthy and safe, ensuring regular visits to the family physician for product maintenance, forcing them to wear coats in the winter, and forbidding them from jumping off the shed roof. I continue honing that skill to this day, attempting to know where my products/children are at all times and not allowing them to do stupid things. (Refer to “wear coats in winter” and “shed roof” for more clarification.)

And, although I’ve never been in the US Army, I can say that I have performed the duties of cryptologic linguist innumerable times. Anyone who has tried to decipher what a two-year-old is saying will back me up on that one.

Hey, if CareerBuilder can play fast and loose with job qualifications, then I certainly can do the same with job titles.