Both Sides of the Fence

A Tosa resident since 1991, Christine walks the dog, cooks but avoids housework, writes and reads, and enjoys the company of friends and strangers. Her job takes her around the state, learning about people's health. A Quaker (no, they don't wear blue hats or sell oatmeal or motor oil), she has been known to stand on both sides of the political and philosophic fence at the same time, which is very uncomfortable when you think about it. She writes about pretty much whatever stops in to visit her busy mind at the moment. One reader described her as "incredibly opinionated but not judgmental." That sounds like a good thing to strive for!

Branding people

branding, job hunt, personal branding

The displacement of more than a half million workers a week is one of those huge, sweeping social trends that carries along whole populations. However, we can't bear to look at it closely. We distance ourselves from it with abstractions or numbers even while it is washing over. I want to put a human face on unemployment while I'm bobbing along, sometimes above, sometimes under water.


Last week was another good one for me: I had the sense of progress. I was busy with some freelance work. There were deadlines to meet and clear steps to take toward them. I found a couple jobs to apply for, and I haven't yet heard "sorry, we decided on someone else" from the two jobs of which I have some hope. 


But this week hasn't begun to take shape yet, and I'm feeling uneasy, trying to ward off the depression that leads to inaction.  After sessions with the sympathetic counselors at Workforce Development; after attending meetings and presentations on resumes, interviewing, and marketing yourself (the fashionable term for job hunting), you realize that there really isn't anything new down the pike.


In times of job scarcity, success boils down to something changing in the area of opportunities. For the individual, it's hunting down one of those opportunities. For society as a whole, though, it's creating more of them.


There are times when personal effort and responsibility pay off more than others, and this is one of those other times. All you can is shake off the overwhelming gloom and focus on the moment and what you can do with it.


Right now, the whole approach to job hunting is personal branding.  Package yourself and pray your package grabs the attention of the buyer who is looking at the database full of brands. I don't really understand how you can compress a whole human being into such a package, though.


Or whether that really helps the "buyer," the prospective employer, know who would make the best person in a particular job, a particular place, at a particular time. That's about something more.


If you're a hiring manager, I'd love to hear your thoughts about employee branding. And of course, anybody else's.

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