Thursday, March 22, 2007

Where is love?

Dear Mrs. Miner,

I have recently made a shift in career focus from academia to applied research in Applied Research Field. Attached please find a copy of my current CV. I received a PhD in [Field 1] & [Interdisciplinary Field] from the University of Paradise. Since August 2005, I have served as a Visiting Scholar there in [Field 2]. My principal interest regards [specifics].

My Ph.D. dissertation addressed [details, and their relation to Applied Research Field]. I recently gave a talk at the [Field 2 conference], presenting [details]. At the conference, I met [researcher from Switzerland], whose work on [details] is close to my own interests.

I would be very interested to discuss with you what opportunities there might be for someone with my background and interests, either at Swiss Forgery, or more broadly within Applied Research Field. I welcome any and all feedback from you, or from anyone you might refer me to. I look forward to hearing from you.

Articulate Dad
Dear Mr. Dad

Thank you for your application for employment with Swiss Forgery.

We regret to inform you, that there is no open job postition for your profile in the moment. What we can do, is keeping your CV, and we would come back to you in case a suitable job opening occurs in the future.

We would like to take the opportunity to wish you every success for the future.

yours sincerely,
Jessica Miner
Must I continue to get this crap, wherever I turn? I really tire of this.

Patience... Perseverance. It will come.


apparently said...

I have to say I really admire your stamina. You continue to pursue your dreams (or some ever evolving version of a dream job, which perhaps even more challenging) and you do so with such grace and courage. I'd be swearing, crying, and sleeping. Move forward, everything will work out for the best.

Breena Ronan said...

That is so not helpful. :(

Lilian said...

I agree with apparently (having already seen your remark about her comment) -- you really demonstrate grace and courage all through this.

trillwing said...

OK. . . a bit of unsolicited critique here. You need to remember that your job search is, at least in potential employers' eyes, not all about YOU. It's about THEM and THEIR interests, THEIR company.

I'd start out, then, by writing to the highest person in the company who works in your particular field. And ask them for an informational interview, not for a job. Then go and talk to them for half an hour about THEIR work, about what THEIR day or year looks like, about where the field is going. It's all about asking good questions, not about flashing your credentials--or, rather, demonstrating that you've put serious thought into the field and the company by asking really good, thoughtful questions. If they're impressed with you, they'll find an opportunity to help you, whether it be with project work or referrals to other people.

trillwing said...

Following up. . .

So, for example, I once did an informational interview with a guy at a museum exhibition development firm, and we chatted about the field and eventually where someone with my interests might fit into it. We talked in particular about one topic that interested both of us. And then he offered me the opportunity to look over his firm's collective shoulder on a particular major contract they had just landed, and even get involved with it. He told me to get in touch with him in four months, when they'd be starting the project in earnest.

Unfortunately for that career track, Lucas came along soon, and I just didn't have the time or energy to follow up. But I'm confident that had I done so, I would have gotten involved in some terrific work in a highly competitive field that's really tough to break into.

Anyway, it's just one example from my little life, but there are thousands of others like it--as is evident by the success of What Color is Your Parachute?. :)

ArticulateDad said...

Thanks, Trillwing (and all), for helpful comments. Yes, I realize (more and more) that I need to figure out their needs. I realize this is part and parcel to the shift in my focus (which I wasn't even fully aware of until last night) from basic to applied research.

This comes back to some of the upshot from my conversations with Meredith Binowitz, who runs her own consultancy in Applied Research Field. She had suggested that I needed to work on relabeling myself, learning the needs and interests of potential clients, then working to find labels for my own work that accorded with them.

I'm working on it.