Diary of a Job Seeking Operative
It’s been a pretty busy week, or at least as busy as it can get without a job. This week I have applied for two positions through my work programme, Avanta, and neither exactly falls into my desired type of job. Yet, at this point I am willing to take on anything I can get, all in the hope of getting some much needed routine practice and some desperately needed money.
The first of the two positions is a call centre job for Marks and Spencer’s. The attraction of this job is there are no direct sales involved so I won’t be made to feel uncomfortable by pushing products onto people over the phone. Let’s face it, very few people have the patience or time to stand around on the phone to salesmen who are trying to get you to pay for things you didn’t original want or could afford. But the job itself seems pretty secure, and since it’s more to do with giving a polite and friendly tone to people calling up, probably with issues to do with a product or its delivery, it could well be something I’m very capable of and it could be somewhat enjoyable depending on the people working there. And like I say; there are no sales, so the job won’t be overly pressured by targets or competitive colleagues trying to outdo one another. I prefer selling face to face either way, as people can’t see my winning smile and big blue eyes over the phone, and believe me I used to sell plenty with this face. That or frighten people into spending money, but I’d like to think it was the charm.
However, the second job I’ve applied for what is simply called a ‘warehouse operative’. It seems job titles these days often use the word ‘operative’, in all cases meaning ‘doing the obvious’, like a ‘delivery operative’ for a postal service that simply means ‘postman’. But this job, for a company called Continental Fine Foods, involves a lot of packing boxes and trays of food. It’s not a great sounding job, and I’m not expecting much either, but if I think I can do it without too much stress or too many crowds of people then I know I can really get my head down and work hard. The rewards won’t be much either, with the low wages and no guarantee of keeping the job after January, but I’m out of options. Regardless, I can keep applying for better jobs and keep on the search for my ideal sort of job that I’m still unsure over, and approaching the age of thirty it is a worrying thing. There’s still time though, so I’m not giving up on the perfect position for me as something could jump out at me one day and then I can look to train or earn the required qualifications in order to get it. I just need to find my feet on the next stepping stone and maybe then I’ll have a little more confidence to pursue bigger things.
The latter of the two jobs is actually the one I really want. Perhaps there is a part of me that has grown fearful of dealing with people, and in any sort of customer service role, like a call centre, that is indeed what you do on a constant basis. At Continental Fine Foods the warehouse deals solely with meat products, mostly pre-cooked, to which there will be plenty sold in shops over the next two or three months leading up the Christmas period (oh joy). And yes, I have spotted the hilarious, although derogatory, nature of the job ‘meat packer’. It is actually a bonus reason for wanting the job so I can bring it up in conversations and be a real comedian. In all seriousness though, I want this job in particular so I can feel my way back into the workforce, back into a team environment with lengthy, arduous shifts that can finish as late as eleven at night. Then I can come home tired and with that well known feeling of accomplishment, instead of just being drained and lifeless after sitting on my backside all afternoon. It will put me to the test, mostly physically, and in the mean time I can look for better. The other possibility is that I might love the job and want to do over time, who knows?
There are issues that have frustrated me this week, though. As usual it is Avanta that riles me up on some days. The people there are a little all over the place I find, and whilst I believe they do try to help they also seem to give a lot of misinformation. For example, this week I was told to be dressed for an interview for two of the three days I was at Avanta, and so I was. The thing is I was told to be smart for the days that I actually didn’t have a formal interview and it was just by luck that I decided to wear my suit on the day that I wasn’t supposed to be interviewed, and on that very day I was seen by both sets of employers. It’s not big issue in a sense, but I could have easily dressed casually like the other applicants were, and I wouldn’t be to blame either as I was given faulty information as to when the two interviews would actually take place. As it happens I decided to be smart regardless, and so I’m hoping it pays off because I felt like a bit of idiot when I was the only one who bothered to dress nicely for the warehouse job.
Maybe all that will play into my hands when it comes to the recruitment, and I’m told there are dozens of jobs available so I’m expecting one. If I’m turned down for this one in particular I’m not sure what the next step is, but it will involve me exploding in frustration or fainting in disbelief. Surely I’m not that useless. I’m qualified to put things in boxes, right? Here’s hoping!