What follows is a pretty typical job application response and my last one for a while, so I thought I'd analyze it a bit for my ever-growing audience and those state employees or family members concerned about whether or not I'm making appropriate efforts in self-employment and/or job searches.

Background for this one is that I just submitted basics and listed all my websites and projects I've done, I probably didn't even read the entire description, since I'd mostly had enough of the canned emails you will see here, and my hope was that a carefree attitude might demonstrate the employer needed me more than the other way around. That WAS NOT my normal way of applying for jobs, but since I never got any of those, either, I thought I'd give it a try, and the result was EXACTLY the same.

Dear Brian,

Thank you for your interest in the position of Communications Specialist .  After careful consideration, we have selected another individual whose background more closely matches the position requirements and preferred skill set. I've actually had dealings with the Communications Specialist at this facility, and I can tell you that her skill set included talking well on the phone and then ignoring my emails. Those are difficult skills to demonstrate in a resume.  However, we appreciate you taking the time to apply and we are fortunate to have had such a robust group of candidates to consider for this role. Should I feel  proud of myself that I wasn't good enough to even get an interview for a communications job, yet I am somehow part of the robust group of candidates? I mean, don't college athletes major in communications?

We encourage you to continue to explore our career opportunities at________________________ you can log into your profile anytime to update your application information or to apply for additional openings. Basically, now that I've been told once again that I have the wrong major or are too old or that they don't believe I was laid off for no reason, I should feel free to waste my time next month when another opportunity designed for a 22 year-old woman will be available.

We also invite you to follow us on Facebook: Twitter: where you will find updates on our open positions, upcoming job fairs we will be attending, as well as helpful tips directly from recruiters. In order to get the full effect of the embarrassment I somehow deserve, I should become of a follower of a company that has little to no interest in me as an employee (and absolutely no interest in me as a neighbor or human being).

We appreciate your interest in the employment opportunities available at the __________________ and wish you success in your future endeavors. Of course, I know this company does not care about me or my endeavors. Then again, I never really cared about theirs, so we're pretty much even.



And that's how they all end. Form letters. Maybe the ones with interviews were more disappointing because a real person existed to had to send the form letter. Lisa and I talk about this frustration all the time. I walk around and see about one in every 100 people who were destined to do better than myself. Maybe one in every 1000. Monkeys in suits doing single jobs that I do as one part of the various tasks I performed as a teacher, writer, and web designer. People who halt all work for an hour to talk about the new baby and the labor involved, as I plug away, day and night, trying to find that niche that will call attention to my skills. Found by a human resources manager with an imagination (but who couldn't possibly have that title with one of those), so I wait and plug away and resolve myself to being broke until I can break in somewhere.

And I know someone out there right now feels the same way. You've got ideas bigger than your company or your job interviews. You see people working for more money than you can imagine while accomplishing nothing more than what they've been asked to do, but you're really the one who should be coming up with the tasks for those folks, but you're stuck getting someone coffee or cleaning out garbage cans. And that's mostly where they want you.

My advice for you, too late for me, is to take that internship. I was better than one of those, so I never did one, and now I can't get an interview as a lowly communications specialist. That's not even a communications director. It's probably someone who specializes in writing emails to people who complain about crappy parking lots. Anyhow, do an internship and humble yourself before those with big egos and medium-sized brains so that they will see that you are willing to put in the effort. Then get jobs and leave right away (like will happen with the person who I lost this job opportunity to) in order to work your way towards human resources lack-of-imagination land.