Monday, March 28, 2011

Job Search Tips

Kathryn left a comment in my last post asking me where I was finding these jobs as she has not been successful yet.  Well Kathryn, it wasn't easy and I put a lot of time into the search.  The key to it though is to not get discouraged!  I know, easier said than done

The first resource I used was the local classified ads.  Most specifically the Sunday edition of the newspaper.  This is typically the largest listing of available jobs each week. 

Second, I made a list of local colleges and big companies that I knew of in my area.  Most of them have websites that have a "career" section.  I "haunted" these websites at least every other day.  You'll start to notice a trend though on each website as to which day they post jobs.  One of our local universities lists jobs typically on Friday mornings.  So I'd look at it Friday afternoon.

Third, I used a job board.  CareerBuilder was a great one.  I posted my resume on it and set up searches that deliver available jobs to your email.  In addition, you can set your resume to be searchable by employers and give them permission to contact you directly.  One of the offers I received was actually off of CareerBuilder.  A headhunter saw my resume and sent it along to a company that was hiring.  I also received phone calls and emails asking for interviews for positions that I didn't even apply for!

Fourth, apply at your local temp agency.  Most temp agencies today are not just for temporary work.  They also assist with direct hire.  But you never know too when that temporary job may turn into a full time position!

Fifth, never burn your bridges!  I left my last position on very good terms and when they had an opening come available, they offered it to me. In addition, my old boss also gave me great references for positions that I was applying to. 

I recently heard a "fact" on the radio, for every 10 of thousand dollars you are seeking in salary, that is how many months it will take you to find a job.  For example, if you are seeking a salary of $60,000 it will take you 6 months to find a job for that much.  It was true in my case.  It took me 4 months to find a job. 

While searching for a job, keep in mind: 1) Can I do this job?, 2) Will I be happy?  and 3) Will it pay my bills?  Those are important things.  Keep searching.  The job market is turning around, or at least the news sources are saying it is.  I would agree somewhat.  I've noticed an increase in the number of jobs available. 

It is a frustrating process but a necessary one.  Keep at it.  View each interview as "practice".  When I finally got my offers, they all came in at once!  Here I was hoping for just one and I received two!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Two Weeks Notice

Once again I have put in my "two weeks notice."  Wow!  I really didn't imagine that I'd be doing that again.  Yes, I've been looking for another position, but it isn't really easy to get a job! After months of submitting resumes and going on interviews, I was handed not 1 but 2 offers this week (not to mention the 3 phone calls I've had asking me for an interview)! 

The first offer was for a position with a marine fleet company that was in the next town about 30 minutes away.  It wasn't a bad drive.  All interstate and not much traffic.  I interviewed with them 3 times.  I think I met the entire upper management team.  During the last interview, they made me an offer for the position.  I was so thankful.  They seemed to be a great company with great people to work with!  I was excited! 

But then, a position at my old job opened up.  I never thought I would ever go back or even be wanted back there!  I loved the work.  Liked the people.  But the boss and I, well, we had our moments.  But he called me to see if I would be interested in going back.  I thought about it and agreed.  He said he'd get back with me. 

So, offer #1 was received on Wednesday.  Offer #2 was received on Thursday.  Having choices is not always good!  I had already tentatively accepted offer #1 based upon passing a few physical tests and a final reference check.  But offer #2 was just as good money-wise AND I would pick up all of the benefits and tenure I had since I was returning to the company within a year of leaving! 

I went with offer #2.  I am going back to the association management business!  I was offered my old association but I decided to work with some new ones.  Also, my role will be a little different this time as I will be working more with the other coordinators, training them, and developing/expanding programs for the associations.

I am very excited about this.  So, now I just have to get through the next 2 weeks at my current job.  I can already feel the stress related to wondering if I'll get paid or if I'll have a job melting away!  Now I can just worry about doing a good job!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Weekends are too short!!!

I think we need to petition the "job gods" that the work week be 2 days and the weekend be 5 days!  This weekend was another weekend that I didn't want to end!

It was another gorgeous spring weekend!  Warm temps and lots of sun!  Spent as much time outside as possible.  Took Duke out to the new dog park where he proceeded to make new friends.  Or at least that's the story I am sticking to!!!  My perfect baby acted like a monster!  He seemed to be "attracted" to a cute little shih tzu and well, he let her know it.  Over and over and over again!  It was quite the embarrassment for me!  Thankfully the owner of the dog had a good sense of humor!  When we weren't at the dog park, Duke spent time out on the patio sunning himself.

I got to see Stacy and Marly Grace for a brief visit on their way home from their cruise.  We had a yummy lunch at Chimes and I got to open my souvenir from Mexico.  This pretty tile that my sweet pea Marly picked out for me.

I've also been steadily working on Cassady's baby quilt. I think I am making great progress. 

The entire quilt.  As you can see I have Jill, the spoon and the plate to finish along with the flowers in the border.

Jack is finished!

Almost finished with the Goose!

I may actually get the quilt done in time.  MAYBE

On the job front, well, it has taken a life of its own!  I have been praying for guidance.  What is the career path I should be on.  I went back for a 2nd interview with a really great company in the next town over.  They spoke of a possible 3rd interview, which I agreed to if necessary.  I've heard from 2 people on my reference list who said that the company has contacted them. Yay!  Shows they are interested in me!  BUT, then, today, I find out that an opening has come available at my old place of employment.  My old boss called me today to talk about it and if I'd be interested.  I said Yes.  Yep, I am crazy.  But I miss the work, I said I wanted more pay and well, who knows?  I can't turn away opportunities waiting on other opportunities.  I am confident (or at least pretending to be) that the right choice will become apparent to me!

Dancing with the Stars starts tonight.  There are many "stars" that I do not know but then there are some that I can't wait to see dance, particularly Kirstie Alley and Kendra.  I like my "reality" tv!!  :) 

Monday, March 14, 2011

Fun Weekend!

Oh, how I wish the weekends would never end!  Mondays are just so loathsome!  Especially the Monday following Daylight Savings Time!!! 

I had a great weekend!  It was fun and the time just flew by! 

Friday started with an interview for a great position that would keep me busy and with a company that seems to be pretty great and STABLE!  Unfortunately, I was only able to meet with one of the three people I was supposed to meet with so I am hoping to be called back for a 2nd interview.  The person I met with said that he felt confident I would be, but one never knows!

Stacy and Marly Grace rolled into town Friday afternoon.  It has been quite a few months since I have seen them last.  Since football season! Way too long!

We went to dinner at a local favorite, Parrain's!  Great seafood.  We had fried green tomatos with a remoulade sauce, charbroiled oysters, and fried shrimp.  Yummy!  After eating so much we had to do something to work off all that food so we went to Perkins Rowe which is a local shopping area. Great area to walk around and do some window shopping.

Then we finished up the evening by watching LSU beat Cal State Fullerton in baseball.  It was a close game but we were victorious!  The game also had one of the worse collisions I had ever seen in a baseball game.  Looked like they forgot they were baseball players and were football players instead!  While we watched the game, Marly kept herself busy coloring and making me a beautiful picture of a sunflower!

Saturday, we packed in a bunch in the morning!  Stacy and Marly Grace were to head to New Orleans to catch a cruise ship.  So, we went to breakfast and then while Stacy went to pick up her mother-in-law, and Marly and I waited for Stacy's mom to arrive at my place, Marly and I cleaned up my patio.  I know, real fun, huh?  But it was such a beautiful morning out, it needed to be done and Marly offered to help.  Who was I to turn down free labor?  :)

Once I got them all off to New Orleans, I headed out to see a movie.  I chose Red Riding Hood.  I liked it.  It was different.  Definitely  not a traditional fairy tale. But if you aren't  interested in werewolves or witches, not a movie for you!  And it definitely was an "adult" movie. Not for children to see!

Started off at the dog park with Duke.  A local park recently underwent some renovations and is now open.  It is a beautiful park.  Has a section for large dogs and small dogs.  A fishing pond.  New tennis courts and facility.  Walking trails.  Duke go to roam around for about half an hour with no leash on and then I got to walk around the trails for another half an hour. 

The rest of the day was laundry, watching LSU beat Cal State Fullerton in the 3rd game of the series (we swept the series!), and a quick visit with my parents.  It was definitely a lazy Sunday!

Daylight Savings Time, though, is not my favorite.  I like the extra sunlight but the hour we lose really messes everything up.  I went to church on Saturday so I wouldn't "oversleep" on Sunday.  But then Sunday night I wasn't tired and couldn't get to sleep so I tossed and turned all night.  Getting up Monday morning was a fight!  Blegh!  Hopefully by the end of the week, I'll be back into a routine again!

Not much progress has been made since last week.  It's been busy, busy, busy.  Hopefully I will have something to show next blog entry but I'm not promising!  LOL  Stacy and Marly Grace are back in town on Saturday again and we have plans.

Spring is here!
I can tell spring is here.  Not by just the film of green pollen on everything but by all of the upcoming events: parties, baseball games, concerts.  It is going to be fun and busy time!

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Good bye Mardi Gras! Helloooo Lent!

Oh, it has been such a great Mardi Gras Holiday!  Yep, it is a holiday down here in the South!  I've been off of work since Friday and I am dreading going back to work because it has been so nice to have no stress or worries! 

It has been a busy six days!  At first I wondered what I would do with myself, but now, I'm wondering, "Where did the time go?"

Mardi Gras
I was able to get down to New Orleans on Sunday for parades.  I have to say that this was one of the easiest trips I've ever taken.  It only took 1 1/2 hours to get down to the Quarter and find a parking spot.  For Mardi Gras time, that was like "ZOOM".  That never happens.  Plus we were able to find a great parking spot in a really nice (clean, well lit) parking garage.  Not to mention pretty cheap, only $20 for the day. 

We hit 4 parades: Okeanos, Thoth, Bacchus, and Endymion.  Endymion is typically a Saturday parade but due to the torrential rains that our area had on Saturday, they moved the parade to Sunday.  We were on a great corner, Tchoupitoulas and Poydras, that was at the end of the parade routes and were surrounded by great people who were fun to talk to and were polite!

Captain of Okeanos

This is either Okeanos or Thoth.  Can't remember!

King of Bacchus, Andy Garcia!  He was a great king! 
His float was stuck in front of us for about 10 minutes and he really played it up for the crowds!

One of the Bacchus floats.  This year they were playing tribute to World War II vets. 

I did get some stitching and scrapping done!  It wasn't all fun down in New Orleans, although a very good time was had down there! What happens in New Orleans, stays in New Orleans! :)

Baby Blanket
I have managed to finish the well and the bucket on the baby blanket.  When you look at it as a whole, I don't feel that I have very much more to do.  So, I hope I can keep it up and continue to work on it!

Butterfly Fairy - Night
On February 27, my sister's birthday, I started the latest project I am doing for her.  I've made some progress on it. 

I even managed to get one page done of scrapping.  Finally I did some pictures of my niece Cassady Hope.  In these pictures she was 7 months old.  So I've got some catching up to do and a pile of pictures to finish off!

Well, that's all I have for now!  I go back to work tomorrow.  Yuck!  I had an interview with a headhunter today that went very well, so now I am just waiting on a call back.  Friday brings Stacy and Marly Grace into town.  They are spending Friday night with me before they head off on a cruise.  I can't wait to have a night out with them! 

The 40 days of Lent started today.  For Lent I am giving up all fast food, McDonald's, Taco Bell, Burger King, and Sonic.  Which will really limit when I go out for lunch during the work week but will also  help with me saving money! :)

Till later!