concept was a simple one. Find ten jobs, and
make contact with the people to let them know that
I was interested in the positions, and see what
happens. So simple, it had to work.
problem was finding ten jobs. The job market
(especially out east here) is thin, mainly looking
for laborers and secre- er... administrative assistants
with excellent typing skills. Despite my typing
ability (I type a lot faster than most people I
know, including my wife), the jobs had to be something
that wasn't too far removed from my job experience
and education. In addition, the location of
the job had to be somewhat reasonable: a job in
Montauk would be out of the question, seeing how
morning eastbound traffic would make a Manhattan
financial concerns were there as well, along with
potential longevity with the position. I didn't
want to take a job that I'd end up dropping immedately
just because a better paying one came along or one
that offered more security. It's not fair
to the people doing the hiring, and honestly, I
have a lesser chance of getting a call from those
because they know I'll bolt if the better offer
Thursday's (7/24/03) Southampton Press came out
and I skimmed over it, I realized that it would
be possible to pull it off this week. This
week I would really find out... is it just me?
JOBS (in no particular order):
Assistant needed for busy office of the Children's
Museum of the East End. Applicant must me
a detail oriented multi-tasker. Strong computer
skills and pleasant phone manner a must. Year
round. Benefits. No calls please.
job: "Assistant", whatever that means
company: The Childrens Museum of the East End
"detail oriented multi-tasker", "strong
computer skills", "pleasant phone manner"
Location (Bridgehampton, a less than 5 minute commute),
Negatives: Non-profit (I always feel
bad taking money from not-for profit places), vague
job description, possible heavy phone work
of contact: Fax
a bad position, possibly. The commute would
be great (zero traffic) and it doesn't seem like
a bad place to work for. Doing something positive
(by helping to make the museum run well) for kids
is always a plus. We didn't have museums like
that when I grew up in Bridgehampton. However,
I'm not necessarily sure when the position would
start, and again, I'm not sure how much it would
pay, although I'm assuming not that much, considering
it is a museum, and they need their money to keep
the place running moreso than to hire a guy with
a college degree to answer their phones.
Customer Service Representative - Conscientious,
outgoing person with professional phone manner.
Must work well under pressure and take responsibility
for own work in team atmosphere. Office and
computer experience. Full time, some Saturdays.
Benefits. References, relibility and
positive attitude a must.
job: Customer Service Representative, apparently.
company: Pulver Gas (not listed in ad, phone number
Keywords: "outgoing person",
"professional phone manner", "work
well under pressure", "must take responsibility
for own work", "reliability and positive
attitude a must"
Positives: Location (Bridgehampton,
see above), benefits
Negatives: "some Saturdays",
apparently pressure-filled job, underlying questions
Method of contact: Fax
they made out this ad, it seems as if they were
sending out a message to someone, possibly the former
employee who filled the position. When you
spend half the ad making sure that the potential
candidate is professional, the person who left must
have left a pretty bad impression. With words
like "professional", "responsibility"
and "reliability" peppering the ad and
the request at the end for references just seem
to imply that they really got burned the last time.
Plus, add onto that the "taking responsibility
for own work" thing. If you're really
a customer service rep, all you're really doing
is working with people, taking calls and dealing
with the people who walk in, dealing with what they
want, and hopefully giving it to them. That's
not something you can easily do and pass off on
another person, so there's something else here.
Fishy, but it was better than most of the
others ones in there.
Immedate opening for a service oriented individual
with good communication skills to join a small,
Westhampton Beach company. Ideal candidate
will be computer literate, have some bookkeeping
experience and a good telephone manner. Service
attitude and willingness to learn and have fun most
important. This job requires multitasking
skills in a highly seasonal, fast paced environment.
Full paid family health benefits, vacation,
holiday pay. Salary commensurate with experience,
but will train the right individual.
job: Considering the size of the company and
description, I'll say there's a little bit of everything
Actual company: Malloy Air East,
or Econo Car Westhampton Beach (both are listed
for the phone number)
oriented", "small", "service
attitude" (that's service twice), "highly
seasonal", "fast paced"
Actual outlined benefits (and good ones from the
looks of things), small company, "have fun"
Possible commute time (Westhampton to Bridgehampton
- 25 miles, albeit opposite of traffic flow), "bookkeeping
experience" (of which, outside of home and
college, I have none)
Method of contact:
one interested me. Maybe I'm a sucker, but
any job that lists "have fun" as
being very important without making you wear
dumbass outfits and pieces of flare
sounds like it might be an interesting place to
work. When I called, I learned that the person
whom I was talking to would be interviewing me,
she was leaving soon, and already was living in
North Carolina, but was being flown up to
work for a few weeks at a time. I'm assuming
I'd be taking her job, so she can stop making possibly
the worst commute ever. The assumption I made
from the tie I spoke to her was that she was probably
doing anything not pilot or owner related with the
company. As it isn't that big of a company,
it seems like it'd be interesting. Plus, they
seem to have the financial backing to support their
employees, especially considering that the company
would be going through the trouble to fly this girl
from North Carolina to Long Island. Also,
when you look at the ad, you can tell that they
care more about telling the applicant about the
job and clearly speaking than trying to use as few
words as possible. That either means that
they really take pride in what they do, or they
have enough money to not worry about an extra few
words of classified text. Either way, a plus.
Hamptons Telephone has openings for the following
SERVICE/PROVISIONING - Both include aspects of telephone
line ordering and customer care duties. Must
have computer literacy, accuracy, attention to detail
and have good phone manner. Salary, benefits.
job: Customer Service Rep
Actual company: Hamptons
Keywords: "telephone line
ordering", "customer care", "accuracy",
"attention to detail", "good phone
Dual company - Hamptons Telephone is an offshoot
of Hamptons Online, which would also be a good job
fit (chance for advancement). Location (Southampton
location would be close to both current and future
Customer service usually implies a lot of phone
time with customers, which I'm not crazy about.
Plus, I know nothing about telephones at all,
except words go in one side and come out the other.
Method of contact:
Telephone is an interesting company, in that any
local based company that actually offers local phone
service and competes with the likes of Verizon has
got to have high hopes and big dreams. It's
a small company, this much I do know, and usually
small companies offer advantages that other companies
might not to compensate for not being as competitive
salary-wise. The whole connection to Hamptons
Online too is a major positive, as they are the
only real local ISP out here, and offer a second
opportunity to advance within the company. Plus,
I figured a resume sent there would kind of blanket
any other opportunities that might be with the companies,
whether or not they were listed yet.
Office Administrator - The Southampton Press seeks
an upbeat, highly organized self starter to manage
accounts receivable in our Southampton Village office.
Primary responsibilities include billing,
invoicing, collections, and fielding customer inquiries,
but you will also help out with other tasks like
answering phones and taking classified ads. The
ideal applicant will have a patient, professional
telephone manner, be an accurate typist, and have
excellent computer skills.
job: Bookkeeper/phone rep/utility office person
Actual company: The
Southampton Press newspaper
"self starter", "fielding customer
inquiries", "also help out", "accurate
again, see above), good looking benefits (the usual,
including "profit sharing")
Lack of experience with "actual" things
listed (I can type fast, but I'm not a "typist".
I know bookkeeping principals, but I don't
have "experience".) Phone time.
"Upbeat" (not that I'm an angry
bastard at work, but I'm far from "perky".)
Method of contact:
thing that stuck out about this job to me (and not
in a good way necessarily) is the hidden implication
that there is no "down time" with the
position. I'm not necessarily a "lazy"
person when it comes to work, but when I get my
work done, or at least a good part of it done, I
like to be able to ease up, to be able to take a
little stress off. This implies that when
my work is complete, it will be my job to find other
work, just so long as I keep busy. I've personally
never understood this work practice. I mean,
there's nothing wrong with helping out the office
in an area where it's busy and you're done with
your work, but to be pretty much told to take half
of someone else's work that he/she may be doing
fine with just because you're good at what you do
is counterproductive. Sure, the first few
times, everyone's work gets done quickly. Then,
as time passes, the person who is getting their
work shared has no incentive to actually finish
their work (knowing that others will finish up)
and the person who finishes their work early has
no incentive to finish their work early because
by finishing their work early, that invites more
of a workload than what the "average"
employee does over that period of time. End
result? Both employees get lax in their work,
productivity suffers, and a negative work environment
can follow (one wonders why the other won't help,
the other resents having to always help). It
seems relatively simple, but it's a practice that
so many companies seem to follow.
I interviewed for Boulder Creek Steakhouse a while
back, hoping to make at least some temp money as
a server or bartender, and maybe weasel myself into
a management-type position. When I interviewed
with the person conducting the interviews (whom
I'll assume was a regional manager of some sort),
he told me that since I had no food service experience,
I would be best suited as a "Take Out Specialist".
While he attempted to sell me on the position
(speaking of tips, because you know that you always
tip the person who gives you your takeout meal),
he let me know that during the downtime that I'd
have from the "Take Out" position, I would
be "helping out" with other aspects of
the resturant, whether it be waiting tables, bussing
tables, cleaning tables, or whatever might be found.
So, not only would my position be the lowest
paid in the building, with no chance of tips, but
I'd also be doing whatever possible to make sure
I wasn't standing still. Needless to say,
I didn't go back for a second interview.
not too promising. But, the ad had been in
the paper for probably a month now, so I figured
if I didn't give it a shot, it might be there forever.
Property Manager - Full time. Professional
office seeks intellegent, motivated individual to
handle Condo and Co-Op association management business.
Must be a dedicated, self-starter, computer
literate, willing to work some Saturdays for board
job: Property manager - apparent truth in advertising
Actual company: The Morley Agency,
a small company dealing with real estate and insurance
again, see above), interesting job (not like the
rest in the group), doesn't seem overly stressful.
The actual job isn't totally clear, Saturdays
Method of contact:
really that much to say about this job. It
was in the press for the first time when I responded
to it. The job, as I mention in the description,
seems interesting enough, just because it doesn't
seem like the typical "computer and paperwork"
job that is what the others seem to be. The
problem lies in the fact that although it doesn't
seem to be that, I'm not really sure what it is
in the first place. Managing property could
mean anything from hiring people to maintain the
property to actually being the person who maintains
the property. Are you like the super of an
apartment building where you wait for complains
and fix them, or is it a more paperwork-intensive
position that involves dealing with property and
the government, making sure future tenants have
background checks and the like? Anything's
possible, as the ad doesn't go into any great detail.
Administrative - East End System Integration company
looking for administrative person with bookkeeping
experience, typing, and organizational skills.
job: Sounds like a glorified secretary to me
Actual company: SecureNet
Systems Design Corp., specializing in home and business
again, see above)
Glorified secretary position, vague
Method of contact:
comes a point where the jobs become more of a stretch
and along the lines of something just to fill out
the required ten for the experiment. This
would be one of them. The only thing that
really set this job apart from the other administrative
assistant positions was the type of ad it was. Instead
of a regular classifired ad, it was a graphicly
made ad that stood out on the page, along with another
ad with it looking for alarm installers. The
fax number was bolded and impressive, and brought
attention to the ad that others might not have gotten.
Sales (inside) - For American Teleconnect, a Southampton-based
teleconferencing company, providing instant conferencing
to the Fortune 1000. Job responsibilities
and qualifications include: strong cold calling
skills, solid work ethic. Ability to research/generate
leads; PC proficiency. Professional writing
skills required for customer correspondence via
Outlook. Work in professional office environment
with five other team members.
job: This screams "telemarketer".
Actual company: American
Keywords: "strong cold
calling skills", "professional writing
skills", "professional office environment"
again, see above), salary (see below)
A day on the phone making cold calls, facing constant
rejection. I'm married, I don't have to deal
with that anymore.
Method of contact:
I wouldn't have touched this with a ten foot pole.
The position had been in the paper for over
a month, and my thought was that they were extremely
picky, or they just weren't a company that people
wanted to work for. The salary offered was
listed in the ad, and it was impressive. A
first year salary of $45,000 was listed, with the
possibility of $75,000 to $100,000 the second year
depending on performance. My thought would
be that people would be falling all over this job.
Yet, there it sat, still in the paper a month
later. Even if the job wasn't for me (which
I have a feeling it's not), I still had to see why
this company hadn't hired anyone yet despite the
riches it offered. Plus, I had to see the
company itself. They seemed pretty major league,
and only had a five person office. Curiousity
more than anything here.
Program Examiner Trainee - An
employee in this class performs studies of the effectiveness of government or
agency operations in meeting programmatic and legal objectives. The work involves policy analysis, budgetary
review, management and operations research, program evaluation and comparative
cost analysis. Positions in this class
differ from those in the budget, management and research titles in that the work
is multidisciplinary in nature, requiring the application of the principles
and techniques of each of these fields.
The incumbent is primarily responsible for analyzing the quality and
costeffectiveness of government or agency service delivery, rather than the
efficiency of internal administrative procedure. Supervision is received from a professional
or administrative supervisor, who evaluates performance through frequent
consultation, conferences and review of oral and written reports. Does related work as
job: Program Examiner Trainee (civil service)
Actual company: Suffolk
County Department of Health
Keywords: "studies of the effectiveness of government"
Compensation (over $37,000 for the first year, receiving
a promotion after the first year to drop the "trainee
part", which takes the position to over $40,000),
benefits of a County job (such as pension)
Hellish commute (Hauppauge, which brings back memories
of Reuters and the hour long commute), longer turnaround
process to find out about the job and to interview,
relatively unknown position.
Method of contact:
trying to find two last jobs for the 10 Job Challenge,
I got a letter from the Suffolk County Department
of Health stating that my name came up on their
civil service list and that they had an opening
and wished to know if I wanted to interview for
the position. Having taken those tests over
four months ago, I jumped at the opportunity, knowing
that it was a good paying position and had good
benefits. I knew that the commute sucked,
but at the same time, I had done it before, and
it wouldn't be SO bad, considering the fact that
I was seriously considering a position in Glen Cove,
which would have been twice the distance from me
than this position. The job seemed interesting
too, making sure that government policies and programs
were running efficently and tax dollars weren't
being wasted. It seemed like I'd be doing
something that would help, which is always a positive.
However, I didn't really know anything about
the position outside of vague "government-ese"
descriptions of the position. The civil service
test that I took didn't offer much insight either,
as that pretty much tested my math and verbal skills,
and probably could have been reused for several
other positions. Plus, with the 10 Job Challenge
in effect, I knew that I would hear from jobs that
I emailed and called long before I'd hear from this
position to even interview for. Oh well. The
only thing to do is to wait and see.
Writer - Bridgehampton resident to be a contributor
to the East Hampton Star.
job: Writer (of what, I'm not sure)
Actual company: East
Hampton Star newspaper
- no fancy terminology here.
Writing position, ability to probably be
able to do the job with another full time job.
Uncertainity of actual job, not full time work
Method of contact:
I don't subscribe to the Star, I didn't find out
about this position until late Monday, therefore
putting me a few days behind anyone else going for
the position. The job offered $75 per week,
so it couldn't be anything that would take a great
deal of time. I thought moreso it would be
good to suppliment the income, and get writing experience
for a local paper. Since my resume doesn't
list any real writing experience, I also faxed over
and noted in the cover letter my past writing for
those are the positions. Ten jobs. Ten
resumes. What does a guy who's been out of
work for over a year with a college degree get in
terms of callbacks? We'll see in part two.