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Humor: Depressed? Hopeless? Stop Looking at the Help Wanted Ads

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Help wanted ads. Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

They say the economy is growing and jobs are being added. But judging from how many people actually have jobs, this looks like another “jobless recovery.”

Sure there are help wanted ads but most of us have seen the pitches before and don’t fall for them. Sometimes we even talk back to them.

Ambitious? Hard-working? (No, I’m a lazy slacker!)

Career minded? (No I want my name on my shirt – forever!)

Tired of the run-around? (No, I want more rejection.)

Looking for a job? (This isn’t the recipe section?)

Many help wanted ads still employ the old bait and switch.

Like money? Must have dependable car.

Be your own boss! Demonstrate my proven cleaning system.

Pleasant sounding telephone voice? Cemetery plot sales may be for you.

Most of us know the bait and switch code by now. “Are you a self-starter?” means the job is chaos and anarchy. No training, no guidelines, no structure and of course no chance for advancement.

“Fast-paced office” means you will do the job of two or more because they are too cheap to hire enough people.

“Join our growing team” means you’ll work two weeks before the “growing team” crashes, owing you for two weeks’ work.

“Tremendous income potential” means no paycheck in the foreseeable future but dreams are nice, aren’t they?

“Need extra cash?” “Senior?” “Student” Means you’ll make $30 a day, if that

“Varied duties” mean you’ll be required to run errands, get everyone’s lunch and likely sweep up at the end of the day.

Help wanted ads. Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

Beware Virtual Jobs

It has been at least two decades since jobs permitted telecommuting and let you work at an offsite or remote location. But today “jobs” are so virtual they sometimes exist only on the smart phone of the person running the ad. Unfortunately the ad placer is often living in his mother’s basement.

Years ago job applicants received a “thank you for your interest in Happy Corp” or some acknowledgment of their application. Today, employers no longer even feel compelled to tell you they “identified” a candidate who “more closely matches” their needs. You just get cyber silence.

Still, it is said that job seekers still get the occasional in-person interview, not just the proverbial phone interview. If you do manage to get one, here are some important pointers.

  1. Show Up

Few candidates get hired if they don’t show up.

  1. Silence Your Smart Phone

Both you and the interviewer know it is a friend asking how the interview went. Both you and the interviewer know it’s your first interview in two years.

  1. Don’t Ask If They Test For Drugs

Why not just say “I get high a lot”?

  1. Memorize Your Application

People who ask “What did I write on there again?” do not look too serious minded.

  1. Expect Career Goal Questions

If you’ve had 11 jobs in 12 years, they’re not going to ask your favorite color. Be prepared.

  1. Don’t Suck Up To Your Interviewer

No one will believe “I love the automotive aftermarket” or “I love to operate vacuform machines.” Human Resources is likely not your interviewer’s first choice either.

  1. Wash the Stamp From Last Night’s Clubbing Off Your Hand

Mouthwash to annihilate all the craft beers you had last night and shampoo can make you look respectable. But if you still have the “over 21” hand stamp from last night at Medusa’s …

  1. Don’t Mention Jobs You Held at Places Called the Stagger or Tumble Inn

No one will be impressed even if you sometimes ordered inventory.

  1. Don’t Put References On Your Application Who Have Not Been Prepped

If you say to the interviewer, “Tell Fred I’ll pay for the mirror, if you call him,” they will likely not call Fred. Nor will you get the job.

Martha Rosenberg is the Investigative Health Correspondent for NewsBlaze. Martha illustrates many of her stories with relevant cartoons. She was staff cartoonist at Evanston Roundtable.

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