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First off, let me preface this by saying this is in no way actual advice for anybody. It's little more than a rant, a middle finger to the employer that couldn't look past my anxiety issues, disability act be damned. Perhaps it's a philosophical debate into what employers really want. It seems like all sympathy goes out the door when money is involved, no second chances or leeway. I didn't lie about my employment history, which in hindsight, I should have. You're told complete honesty is how you should handle job interviews, but that isn't true at all.
The online job application is one of the most painstakingly depressing things to fill out. I think I'd rather have teeth pulled than have to fill out more than three job applications. Employers care about one thing only: experience. But for the unlucky few that don't have the luxury of being breastfed from a trust fund or the social skills to rub elbows with the big ballers, you can eat shit for not having experience. I'm going to let you in on a trade secret, employers: We probably don't have experience because employers refuse to hire those with no experience. Do I fabricate a fake three year job at one company to bolster my resume or do I tell the truth? I don't honestly know. I don't know what they want anymore. All I know is that I'm broke and don't have the patience to poker face my way into an interview.
I wish that I could go back in time and be a less shitty human being. I wish I didn't have depression and anxiety holding me back. But wishing does fuck all and there's no time machine to take me back to those days where I was supposed to become this experience-gathering automaton that ass-kissed their way into the frontlines of menial work. But I went to trade school and got a diploma in Medical Assisting? How many interviews I prepared for just to get overlooked for someone with an Associate's Degree! Well, fuck me for not having the money to get a 4-year degree! I guess I'll just die!
There's some validity in the phrase, "it's not what you know, it's who you know." I didn't know that I was supposed to be keeping a roster of important people. Even so, I'm so socially awkward, I wouldn't have made an impression on them anyway. If my rights as an American citizen guarantee me the right to work, then why am I continually road blocked by these untold pseudo rules of a pecking order? Why is it okay for employers to dismiss those who haven't had the chance to gain experience but it's not okay for employees to be given the opportunity to gain experience?
This Huffington Post article by Jessica Simko illuminates the reality of job interviews. Forget all you've been told in high school about being forward and honest with your employer. And by that, I mean become the obedient little machine that they need to get shit done. If you have to, search for tips on job interviews and fine-tune your responses to prompted questions such as, "What's one situation where you felt like you handled it best?" or "If you were in this situation, how would you handle it?" Keep away from personal stories where you were the problem that needed to be fixed. Tell one that puts you in the hero position.
Employers want reliability, dependability, and someone that isn't going to cost them more than you will make them in the long run. They don't care about your personal problems. They care about what time you clocked in and out on what day and if the work you did was satisfactory. When putting your stuff into your locker or cubbyhole, check your personality and issues in with them. You are not a person in this work environment, welcome to the workforce.
Don't tell an employer that you have a mental illness. You might fill out that disability statement online, but it's all bullshit. They see those suffering mental illnesses as liabilities and nothing more. As much as we as a society have tried to remove the stigma attached to anxiety and depression disorders, the working class are robots in the companies' eyes. You are expendable if you show the littlest bit of weakness.
And that's deplorable. Truly, honestly deplorable.