P&C Crap-All

I guess I just get the feeling that your friendly neighborhood P&C buddies have a much different sense of humor than your Facebook group.

I mean, the thing I found most hilarious about it was when he countered with "I’ve got a career in broadcasting" 'cause I was like HA! almost no one has a career in broadcasting these days, you've just got a job until you get replaced by a computer halfway across the country unless you're like, some Rush Limbaugh bottom feeder...

..and then I read a couple more of his posts.

As someone who has screened resumes for some pretty hardcore junior through senior technical roles, I will say that your papers will end up in the shredder 9.9 instances out of 10 if you have no prior work experience regardless of your academic qualifications. We have always found people that are academically, socially and professionally experienced enough so it's my personal belief that you are seriously disadvantaging yourself if you don't get some sort of work behind you before starting your professional career.

And Seth makes an excellent point regarding contacts. You may be quite surprised how far your professional network can stretch based off a 2-year stint at a bookstore or supermarket. I personally believe that general market exposure is more important than anything else in getting your foot in the door. It is most certainly not what you know and a candidate with exclusively academic referees better hope they are all household names within their chosen industry.

DC Malleus wrote:

As someone who has screened resumes for some pretty hardcore junior through senior technical roles, I will say that your papers will end up in the shredder 9.9 instances out of 10 if you have no prior work experience regardless of your academic qualifications. We have always found people that are academically, socially and professionally experienced enough so it's my personal belief that you are seriously disadvantaging yourself if you don't get some sort of work behind you before starting your professional career.

And Seth makes an excellent point regarding contacts. You may be quite surprised how far your professional network can stretch based off a 2-year stint at a bookstore or supermarket. I personally believe that general market exposure is more important than anything else in getting your foot in the door. It is most certainly not what you know and a candidate with exclusively academic referees better hope they are all household names within their chosen industry.

That works both ways.

We had a person at my work place who was tapped to fill in as a specific work agent for six months when we had a huge influx of work. She went through the training and became a star performer. After the assignment, she reverted back to her own job, but four weeks later, her temp position became open as a permanent full-time position. Knowing that she clearly knew how to do the job and was a star performer, she apply. Her application was reject outright.

She didn't have a bachelor's degree.

I completely understand where you are coming from Phoenix and education inflation is causing serious issues in non-technical roles, but that is tangential to my point; the jobs I was referring to were various flavours of engineering. This article seemed to focus on unique academic snowflakes and I was insinuating that you've got to get a little grimy before donning a white collar

DC Malleus wrote:

I completely understand where you are coming from Phoenix and education inflation is causing serious issues in non-technical roles, but that is tangential to my point; the jobs I was referring to were various flavours of engineering. This article seemed to focus on unique academic snowflakes and I was insinuating that you've got to get a little grimy before donning a white collar :)

I don't believe that you are hiring for entry-level engineering positions if you are tossing every resume without work experience, or you are hiring for a rather small company. I can't imagine you are actually looking at new graduates if you only hire people that are "academically, socially and professionally experienced". That tells me you are looking for a degree plus years of experience, which is really not what we are talking about. I'm also happy to call BS on your assertion that people with serious STEM degrees are best utilized by stocking shelves for five years or whatever your gatekeeper rule is. I am an engineer, who went through the hiring process and watched a bunch of my peers/friends go through it a few years ago. I've interviewed new graduate potential hires, and I give a negative number of damns about how much time they spent making coffee at Starbucks. I care about their academic history, the projects they worked on, and what sort of internships they may have.

in a STEM role what you can DO matters most.

Only if you can get your foot in the door. And for some of us, even that is not enough.

Fair point about internships Kraint, they are certainly a viable alternative and often form the basis of a strong industry network. I guess what I am saying is that you need differentiators on your resume or some very strong recommendations. If I've got 30 applications with very similar academic qualifications to review for a single technical position, unless I've got an absolute academic stand-out or I've been advised to 'float this one to the top' by an internal, a significant factor of my initial cull is going to be exposure to the workforce. To reiterate the point that Momgamer made, getting your foot in the door is the single most important thing to getting work in your field. What you know is crucial to your professional career but you've got to get a chance to apply it first.

It sounds like Kraint has a pretty different experience to me though, so I may well be the outlier here.

My views have been strongly affected by being part of the classes who came out of school right as the housing market imploded. But I've not seen nor heard of any of my professional colleagues or my friends/associates from college making any sort of route into the engineering world by making contacts at a book store, coffee shop, or fast food restaurant. Nor has lack of employment history been a consideration in the times I've been in a position to look at hiring new college graduates. For experienced positions, it is certainly considered. But no one I've met professionally has wrung their hands about a new college graduate spending many months looking for work in their (suddenly contracting) field. I would almost be more leery of someone who reflexively sought employment far below what their education should open up for them upon graduation, assuming they had the resources to spend job-hunting.

The point I raised with you, DC, about entry-level positions and job experience is a particular bugbear of mine. There are a lot of companies, at least in my larger industry, that all seem to clamor for nothing but experienced people while refusing to hire new graduates and train them. There is a lot of magical thinking involved with how to create and keep engineering talent in my industry, and I've seen how it has bitten people I know.

Everyone should work an entry-level job, in my opinion. Everyone. The earlier the better. Get the experience. Understand how jobs work. Be exposed to an environment where there is structure, rules, hierarchy...and forthesakeofallf*cks, customer service. Everyone should have the valuable experience of being subtly abused by the public on a semi-regular basis for at least a short period of time.

By "saving" your ability to work for a job you "deserve," you're doing your future coworkers a disservice by being completely clueless as to how professional relationships and interactions work. You're a burden. Someone, at some point, is going to have to teach this "adult" how to behave in the workplace...at the professional level (this gives me extreme douchechills). Not to mention the simple stuff they could have learned working at Starbucks like time management and meeting minute expectations. I've been stewing on this concept for a while, and it reeks of privilege, excuse-making of bad parents, and laziness.

I may be a bleeding-heart liberal, but I believe everyone should start at the very bottom and climb grungily to the top of wherever they want to be, and for f*cks sake do it on your own without your parents calling the shots along the way. That being said, I do feel a little bad for this sad-sack manbaby they've probably created.

I understand that there are places where there are no jobs for people with no work experience. That is a different thing. The thing I'm addressing here is the unwillingness to work when there are jobs, but for whatever reason, people are "too good" for them. (Otherwise known as scope).

Great post.

Amoebic wrote:

I may be a bleeding-heart liberal, but I believe everyone should start at the very bottom and climb grungily to the top of wherever they want to be, and for f*cks sake do it on your own without your parents calling the shots along the way. That being said, I do feel a little bad for this sad-sack manbaby they've probably created.

Except entry-level jobs are not part of any ladder. I see commercials about how McDonald's employees can eventually go to Hamburger U and become executives, but let's face it--there's basically no such thing as a ladder leading up from an entry level job anymore, at least any ladder leading anywhere you want to end up. Eventually if you want to make it anywhere, you need to jump over to some other ladder.

The older I get, the less I care about things like Privilege and Laziness. Life is too short and I'm too dumb to go around judging that many people. As for bad parents, I don't know--they couldn't have predicted decades into the future when they were making the decision to become parents. No excuse for parents today though--I'm kinda on the side these days that if you can't give your kids a trust fund, you shouldn't be having kids in the first place.

If there's bad parenting involved here, it's probably that they taught him life is a lot more fair than it actually is. Life is sh*t. It becomes less and less fair every day. They probably taught him that if you succeed in school, you can bypass entry level jobs:

I must study politics and war, that our sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. Our sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history and naval architecture, navigation, commerce and agriculture in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry and porcelain.

--John Adams

That's what America used to be. It isn't anymore. Hasn't been for a long time. If this kid and his parents switched places, they'd probably be in each other's places. If anything, this kid probably didn't have his parents call the shots for him enough. The lesson here is that if you're Privileged, use that Privilege. Don't waste your chances in life trying to make it on your own. Make it in life the easiest way possible to you. Then when you're in a position of power worry about life being fair.

And I don't think you're going to learn any of this at a Starbucks.

CheezePavilion wrote:

stuff

Also: Great quote from John Adams. I now respect him for something other than his beer.

EDIT: Don't agree with all of Amoebic's post, but it was a good 'un. I'm considering changing my name to "Sad-sack Manbaby."

Jayhawker wrote:

I don't think Amoebic is talking about climbing the ladder of a corporation, but climbing the ladder of life. Someone with no skills or education is not really the issue, they are stuck. The issue at hand happens to be college grads that filed to get an real life look at what holding a job is like.

Chris Rock was on Aisha Taylor's podcast last week, and the subject of how actors have perceived their time at SNL as either good or terrible. Rock claimed that he would bet that every actor complaining about the "hell" they went through on SNL never held a real job. Rock worked at Red Lobster. He thought SNL was a good because it was a job. Actually, he went on to call it college for comedians, as it is a good stepping stone into moving on with your career.

I've actually heard that bit of his and life lessons about dental care and dropping out of school in the 2nd grade. Thing is, Chris Rock sure wasn't calling Red Lobster part of the 'ladder' to SNL the way SNL was the ladder to being a comedian.

There is no 'ladder of life'. Life is way more chaotic than that. There might be ladders, plural, but that's what I was saying and what that example clearly illustrates.

SallyNasty wrote:

I think that is a good post but I disagree that you wouldn't learn anything working at a Starbucks. Working a menial job gives you perspective. I have done warehouse jobs and they are a pain in the ass. They didn't really teach me any job skills, but they did teach me that I don't want to work in a warehouse so I had better apply myself so I can work in an office.

I kinda get this feeling that if your parents are doing that bad of a job, you probably won't learn that lesson. I know what you're talking about, as we never studied as hard in college as the nights we came back from working the fryer, but I just get the feeling that someone who is raised as poorly as people are saying, they won't get that lesson out of a Starbucks jobs. Like Jayhawker brought up Chris Rock, and what I remember of that bit was the total desperation--the reason he was a busboy scrapping plates is because he had f*cked up teeth, so he couldn't even get a job as a waiter. Will a job at Starbucks really slap that kind of sense into someone like that? Or will they just blow it off?

A, let's call it unskilled labor, position is also good for teaching someone about hierarchies. Everyone has a boss that they have to answer to. Even business owners have to answer to their customers (or there won't be any).

I was thinking that the manbaby may have gone on for advanced degree education, such as a Masters or Doctorate. Personally I believe that if he did, without getting any career-oriented job experience along the way, he done f*cked up. First off, many companies will pay for those degrees. Secondly, in my experience, companies count each advanced degree as equivalent to two years experience. But they still want some practical exepience in a corporate setting. I think there is nothing worse on the job than someone with advanced academic learning and no real-world experience. Academics (speaking generally here) deal in terms of theoretics, not real world application. But the real world tends to be very messy and there is definitely a learning curve to work in it.

I've been staying out of the conversation for fear of being seen as the conservative meanie, but I wholeheartedly agree with all the great latest posts. Just want to add that a childhood filled with lots of menial jobs around the neighborhood for crap pay plus a stint in the Army did wonders for me when it came to self-confidence and being willing to do the crap jobs nobody else wanted. For example, I know that no matter how tough my current day job is, I don't have to head out into 40 below weather for a patrol along the Korean DMZ or go on a convoy in 110 degree desert heat. That kind of self confidence is something you just can't learn in school.

Final thought about whether lower-level jobs matter for tech work or not. It seems nowadays the easiest way to get a foot in the door is through technical temp agencies, and while an engineering firm may be willing to take a bright new candidate with no work experience, the temp agencies probably won't. They don't care about "potential" as much as making sure all their minions arrive to work on time and not wearing flip flops (unless the client is ok with that). Also, my solid work history at "lesser" jobs plus my technical certificates are how I was able to get on with a temp agency, and then on full-time.

.

You're such a conservative meanie, zappa.

Related, but you know how we all talk about upward mobility in America, and about how it's a myth?

Well it does still kind of exist, depending on a whole lot of factors. Turns out one of those factors is geography. Specific parts of the country afford a much higher chance of a Bootstraps experience than others, with Atlanta representing a hamster wheel for the lower income families.

I think that is a good post but I disagree that you wouldn't learn anything working at a Starbucks. Working a menial job gives you perspective. I have done warehouse jobs and they are a pain in the ass. They didn't really teach me any job skills, but they did teach me that I don't want to work in a warehouse so I had better apply myself so I can work in an office.

The below really resonated with me.

CheezePavilion wrote:

If there's bad parenting involved here, it's probably that they taught him life is a lot more fair than it actually is. Life is sh*t. It becomes less and less fair every day. They probably taught him that if you succeed in school, you can bypass entry level jobs:

My wife, who is now a lawyer, was raised in a stable home, her only job was to get good grades, and when she got out of school she was completely unequipped for "real life" and the fact that just because you personally worked hard and made the responsible decisions doesn't mean that Life cares. The universe is indifferent, unfortunately. Having worked since I was 14 I am much more able to cope with doing what you have to do to get by, like when I graduated with two master's degrees and had to work as a courier at Fedex for 17 months so that we could have health insurance.

You learn a lot more from working (a lot of it about yourself) than just job skills.

CheezePavilion wrote:
Jayhawker wrote:

I don't think Amoebic is talking about climbing the ladder of a corporation, but climbing the ladder of life. Someone with no skills or education is not really the issue, they are stuck. The issue at hand happens to be college grads that filed to get an real life look at what holding a job is like.

Chris Rock was on Aisha Taylor's podcast last week, and the subject of how actors have perceived their time at SNL as either good or terrible. Rock claimed that he would bet that every actor complaining about the "hell" they went through on SNL never held a real job. Rock worked at Red Lobster. He thought SNL was a good because it was a job. Actually, he went on to call it college for comedians, as it is a good stepping stone into moving on with your career.

I've actually heard that bit of his and life lessons about dental care and dropping out of school in the 2nd grade. Thing is, Chris Rock sure wasn't calling Red Lobster part of the 'ladder' to SNL the way SNL was the ladder to being a comedian.

There is no 'ladder of life'. Life is way more chaotic than that. There might be ladders, plural, but that's what I was saying and what that example clearly illustrates.

Oh, kick-ass. Now we can spend a page debating the semantics of "ladders" as a metaphor.

Nitpicking over a single word in this forum? Pshaw!

Jayhawker wrote:
CheezePavilion wrote:
Jayhawker wrote:

I don't think Amoebic is talking about climbing the ladder of a corporation, but climbing the ladder of life. Someone with no skills or education is not really the issue, they are stuck. The issue at hand happens to be college grads that filed to get an real life look at what holding a job is like.

Chris Rock was on Aisha Taylor's podcast last week, and the subject of how actors have perceived their time at SNL as either good or terrible. Rock claimed that he would bet that every actor complaining about the "hell" they went through on SNL never held a real job. Rock worked at Red Lobster. He thought SNL was a good because it was a job. Actually, he went on to call it college for comedians, as it is a good stepping stone into moving on with your career.

I've actually heard that bit of his and life lessons about dental care and dropping out of school in the 2nd grade. Thing is, Chris Rock sure wasn't calling Red Lobster part of the 'ladder' to SNL the way SNL was the ladder to being a comedian.

There is no 'ladder of life'. Life is way more chaotic than that. There might be ladders, plural, but that's what I was saying and what that example clearly illustrates.

Oh, kick-ass. Now we can spend a page debating the semantics of "ladders" as a metaphor.

Or we can spend a page discussing how some college kid's optional experience at Starbucks where mommy and daddy can come bail him out at any moment is nothing like Chris Rock's desperate high-school drop out experience at Red Lobster. Or you can not seek out what you think is a semantics argument and then complain about the argument being about semantics by ignoring what I said about ladders and focus on what I said about how Starbucks is not the college for anything. Even SNL isn't the college for comedians--it's more like a Rhodes scholarship.

But you know--choose to continue the conversation down the path that you supposedly want to avoid at all costs. THAT certainly makes you look like an expert on personal responsibility.

Maybe all people are different and there's no one size fits all solution. Maybe working at a low level job first does wonders for some people but others don't really get much out of it. Maybe some people do fine making the jump from academics to work and others really should've gotten some work experience in to prepare them. Maybe some employers see the Starbucks employment and say "That's a good sign, it shows they were willing to take initiative and get a job even before they graduated", and others say "That's a bad sign, what were they doing working Starbucks instead of something in their field?"

One-size-fits-all "everybody should..." statements rarely work :p

Human Resources and Hiring works on a few narrow sets of holes, and you damn well better be the right peg. So until that changes, people who know how to play that game will do better.

CheezePavilion wrote:

Or we can spend a page discussing how some college kid's optional experience at Starbucks where mommy and daddy can come bail him out at any moment is nothing like Chris Rock's desperate high-school drop out experience at Red Lobster. Or you can not seek out what you think is a semantics argument and then complain about the argument being about semantics by ignoring what I said about ladders and focus on what I said about how Starbucks is not the college for anything. Even SNL isn't the college for comedians--it's more like a Rhodes scholarship.

But you know--choose to continue the conversation down the path that you supposedly want to avoid at all costs. THAT certainly makes you look like an expert on personal responsibility.

I think I already offered a worthy response to the silliness of debating the Matt Walsh letters. I thought you agreed.

Hey, so, I have a degree and worked at The Olive Garden for four years while in school and raising for kids with my practice wife. Anyone here wanna see my résumé?

muraii wrote:

Hey, so, I have a degree and worked at The Olive Garden for four years while in school and raising for kids with my practice wife. Anyone here wanna see my résumé?

While I am not one who appreciates people saying, "Well my experience," as if that proves anything... I'll in this one case say that I would murder to see someone walk in the door with four years of work in the same place on their resume. Right now, I'm fortunate if anyone we're hiring can at least come up with an interesting story about their spotty job history.

I'm sad to hear this is not something that seems to be valued so much elsewhere.

Jayhawker wrote:
CheezePavilion wrote:

Or we can spend a page discussing how some college kid's optional experience at Starbucks where mommy and daddy can come bail him out at any moment is nothing like Chris Rock's desperate high-school drop out experience at Red Lobster. Or you can not seek out what you think is a semantics argument and then complain about the argument being about semantics by ignoring what I said about ladders and focus on what I said about how Starbucks is not the college for anything. Even SNL isn't the college for comedians--it's more like a Rhodes scholarship.

But you know--choose to continue the conversation down the path that you supposedly want to avoid at all costs. THAT certainly makes you look like an expert on personal responsibility.

I think I already offered a worthy response to the silliness of debating the Matt Walsh letters. I thought you agreed.

I just gotta respond with shock-and-awe anytime the S-word comes up, lest that get out of hand again.

Bloo Driver wrote:
muraii wrote:

Hey, so, I have a degree and worked at The Olive Garden for four years while in school and raising for kids with my practice wife. Anyone here wanna see my résumé?

While I am not one who appreciates people saying, "Well my experience," as if that proves anything... I'll in this one case say that I would murder to see someone walk in the door with four years of work in the same place on their resume. Right now, I'm fortunate if anyone we're hiring can at least come up with an interesting story about their spotty job history.

I'm sad to hear this is not something that seems to be valued so much elsewhere.

While I held a few different positions (through promotions), 10 of the ~14 years I've spent in my post-college working life were spent at one company.

muraii wrote:

raising for kids

Full-Stop. ---> Shredder. Next!