Job Searching/Interviews with No Work Experience

jobBy: Brad Manock

 

            I grew up in, basically the middle of the woods, not much civilization to speak of. So there was no opportunities for gaining work experience growing up. When I moved to an actual town with businesses, I was fighting an uphill battle in my first job search because I was very awkward and I had no experience. In this article I am going to discuss the struggle of gaining employment without any experience.

 

I Have No Weakness!

            My first ever job interview, and my only interview of my high school career, was at a Burger King a half hour away from where I lived. This was one of the most awkward experiences of my life up to that point. I did everything EXACTLY wrong because I had never been in an interview before and I was giving the answers I thought were “right” instead of honest answers. It was “open interview” day so I just walked in and asked for an interview. We sat down at a booth and began the interview. “What is your greatest weakness”…I paused and in a very unconfident way said “nothing.” Which is probably the worst answer possible besides something crazy like saying “I smoke meth every day and kill people.” When you as the person being interviewed say “nothing” the interviewer thinks “ok this guy is a huge pussy.” If you are an introverted individual like myself, don’t even try to get a regular retail job like in fast food.

 

You Need To Be More Outgoing

            Being introverted is a huge disadvantage in a job search. Living in the Midwest, specifically Wisconsin being introverted is perceived as being rude. I am a nice person and I am not an asshole, but people see me and think to themselves “he doesn’t talk because he thinks he is better than everyone else, what an asshole.” Introverts tend to think about their words and decisions more, this makes it difficult to have a naturally flowing conversation with the person giving you the interview. I was always very nervous about job interviews, this nervousness would amplify my natural awkwardness to the point where I would have no hope of doing well in a job interview.

 

            People who conduct job interviews tend to find it annoying when the interviewee gives short answers without going into detail. As an introvert I find that I don’t like hearing my own voice and I subconsciously rush through answers which makes it awkward for the interviewer. When you have no work experience, you need to give the interviewer enough information that they feel comfortable hiring you. A big part of job interviews are questions that talk about past experiences. They would say something like “tell me about a time you disagreed with a coworker and how did you handle that.” These types of questions are very obviously there just to weed out socially awkward people and people who have no experience. I would have to make up a situation on the spot to answer these types of questions since there is no “pass” option during job interviews.

 

Dust Off The Ole “Job Clothes”

            I rarely got interviews, the application-to-interview ratio was very low. To this day I have only ever been in four formal job interviews. The process of applying for a job is still usually pretty awkward. In the small town I was applying to jobs in, all of the fast food businesses were right in a row. So I put on my “nice ‘job’ shirt” and I started walking down the sidewalk, entering every building and trying to apply. I don’t know why it is always fast food, but whenever I hear the word “job” I imagine a cashier at a fast food restaurant. I’m not sure how our culture absorbed that as the default job.

 

I’ll Put This Application In… The… Not Garbage

            Here is how the typical situation would play out during the application process. I would walk into the restaurant in the mid-afternoon after the lunch rush, so the building would have no customers. The employees are enjoying their break and are talking among themselves since they have no customers to attend to. Then when I would walk in, with my shaggy hair and my button-down shirt, the employees would have a look on their faces like “fuck that guy.” I would slowly and awkwardly approach the counter and ask for a job application, they would hand me a sheet of paper. After handing me the sheet of paper they would “there you go you can drop it off any time” which I realize now was a code for “get the fuck out we don’t want you here.” But the hint went unnoticed and I said “I will just fill it out now” and I would pull the pen out of my pocket and fill out the application. After I completed the application I would hand the paper back to the cashier and say “thank you” with a big, unnatural smile and I would walk out to go to the restaurant next door.

 

            The whole job finding process is bullshit, I much prefer being an entrepreneur over traditional employment. People always say “get a job” but nobody ever says “make your own job” which, in my opinion, would be far smarter advice for someone looking for work. Instead of going through the process of trying to get someone else to have pity on me and give me a shot at employment, I want to just create my own business and hire myself. I am a control freak, if someone else has to give me permission to have a job then I am doing something wrong.

 

            I did eventually get a job working night shifts at UPS as an unloader. I just unload trucks so the packages can be sorted and I never have to deal directly with customers. A pretty good deal for an introvert. It keeps me in shape and gives me one of those boring and consistent jobs so that it doesn’t look like I am being lazy while trying to build a business of my own.

Comments

Loading Facebook Comments ...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.