Sunday, August 1, 2010

Burning Bridges

"We cross our bridges when we come to them and burn them behind us, with nothing to show for our progress except a memory of the smell of smoke, and a presumption that once our eyes watered." ~Tom Stoppard

As some of you already know, I did not get the job at American Greetings.  You know, my dream job.  The one I was made for.  That amazing place with pictures on the wall and a Starbucks inside. I was the perfect candidate. Or so I thought.  It came down to two and they picked the other person.  

It's pretty much my fault.  Well fault is a harsh word. I left it all to God.  I asked him to give it to me if it was the right job for me and for my kids.  And at the last interview the manager started talking about late nights and 12-hour work days.  I knew right then I wouldn't get it. The manager knew I had 3 kids and I knew that the schedule would never work for Soccermom.  And the director that really liked my credentials quit the week before.  So it came as no surprise that I got the call a few days later telling me they chose the other person.

What did come as a surprise is what happened next.  I sent the e-mails and texts out to my closest friends (and all 385 of them on FB) giving a status update to the job search.  My mom calls me of course.  I get the typical "everything happens for a reason" and "when one door closes" speech.  Mom is my biggest cheerleader and I love her for it.  Then she tells me she sent an e-mail to American Greetings telling them what a mistake they made in not hiring her amazingly wonderful daughter.  "That's sweet,"  I say.  And then my brain catches up.  What???  OMG!  Did I really just hear what I think I heard?  She E-MAILED the company.  To try and convince them to hire her daughter anyways.  Not good.  Rewind.  Take a step back.  

I ask her 20 questions trying to find out what exactly she said and who she sent the e-mail to.  Apparently it was a really nice note and she even thanked them for letting her vent (scary).  It was sent to a general e-mail, so there is a really small chance that no one read it.  Minuscule.  Because what probably happened is that it went to the IT department.  Some really bored 3rd shift guy came across it and laughed his butt off.  Feeling like a good Samaritan, he decides to forward it to the appropriate people, namely the Human Resources Department.  My guess is they also read it, crying on the floor, before forwarding it on to the hiring manager and probably everyone else at American Greetings.  It may have even made it to their intra-company newsletter in the weekly motivational section.  You know, the "you think you've got it bad..." page.

She really did mean well.  But what kind of worked in grade school (poor Mrs Oliver, the secretary at St. Jerome's) does not work so well at 39.  I'm assuming that I probably won't get called back for another interview.  Ever.  Unless they ant a good laugh or to see what my mom will do next.  I really did intend to try for another position there.  

One of my friends suggested she write a book How To Burn Bridges And Piss People Off.  I told mom about this too.  Of course she thinks it's a great idea.  Seriously.  So she has already started writing it.  No really.  She already has the premise and needs people to send her ways they've burned bridges in the past.  If you have one, you can post a comment here.  Or if you really feel like being entertained, go ahead and friend her on Facebook.  She's listed as Nora Hardy (Nora Pitts Lunar).  Yes, we love the strange last names in our family.  She's heard all of them too before you even try.  She loves Farmville and needs more neighbors.  Just be prepared to participate in the co-ops. 

If you are planning on leaving a job, never working again and have no need for referrals, here's a great letter to use.  It's actually very well written and says what most of us only dream of saying to those who lead us.  If you do continue to plan on looking for more jobs, do not, I repeat, do not do as mom or Sam Toperoff did.  Instead, send a nice thank you card (on American Greetings stationary, not Hallmark as mom also suggested).  

So, for the moment I am still jobless.  I don't know exactly what I want to do yet.  I know there's something out there for me.  Hopefully another dream job will come along.  In the meantime, I am not telling my mom where I'm interviewing.  (No offense mom.  I love ya, but I do need a job.)  I may not even tell her where my job is for a while until I'm sure they're going to keep me.  And if you know of any wonderful jobs let me know.  Until then, I will continue packing and writing whatever comes to my mind (uh, I meant posting more blogs.)

No comments:

Post a Comment