I can be pretty good at what I do and currently I am unemployed. The good thing is that it is the third time so I have experience.
However, many things have changed since the last time. Now a possible question during an interview, is, “Do you have any experience working in a matrix organization? Also, rather than mailing in resumes with targeted cover letters, you end up filling out a questionnaire and submitting your resume into a company’s computer system, probably never to be evaluated by human eyes, but eliminated based on one of your answers. Interestingly, many companies then continually send you e-mails about other similar job openings.
What’s also different is the growth of an industry targeting the unemployed. Job search sites, resume evaluation companies, coaches, and job fairs are examples. I have interacted with a number of them and the greatest benefit that I have received was at a free seminar that John Telep (http://www.smartresumetoday.com) conducted.
It wasn’t the good advice or the fact that he answered every question with great thought and care. The benefit is a book he recommended to the attendees, which included entry-level individuals to the most experienced.
The very deceptive title is “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho. After reading it, I conclude that alchemists have been given a bad rap. You see we are all alchemists searching to find what will make us happy. In the introduction, Coelho explains the importance of your personal calling. “It is G-d’s blessing, it is the path that G-d chose for you here on Earth. Whenever we do something that fills us with enthusiasm, we are following our legend.”
The problem is that there are many obstacles and where you end up might not be the treasure that you originally sought. The key to success isn’t just following your heart or your head, but paying attention to what Santiago, the book’s protagonist, discovered. “[T]hat intuition is really a sudden immersion of the soul into the universal current of life, where the histories of all people are connected, and we are able to know everything, because it’s all written there.”