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Tuesday January 15th 2019

Jobseeker Account Of A Day At The Job Fair

A New Awakening

Written by: Shafie

Posted: 10/06/2010 by wheresmymanual in My Journal (reproduced with permission)

I was at a job fair recently. I have a better idea of   the job market  now and the possible discrimination I may face. I made a conscious effort to plan carefully as I do not wish to spend another fruitless day at the fair.  So,  basically,  my plan was to avoid companies that employ based on ethnicity and age.

As I pored over the job-fair website, I  narrowed down those companies which did not specify ethnicity  and age as their selection criteria. I also ensure that  I would be eligible for the vacancies based on my qualification and skillsets. In all fairness, there are other companies that did not employ based on race but they were looking for newly-minted graduates. I do not wish to accuse them of being ageist but it did felt like they were looking for the younger set of workers.

So with a fool-proof plan (or so I thought), I went to the job-fair on the opening day and headed straight for  the three  companies that I have narrowed down.

The first one was looking for an operations assistant, but unfortunately they claimed the position was already  filled up before they were able to update their brochures and job status on the website. Feeling slightly angry with this silly revelation or excuse, I headed to the second company.

This company is a healthcare service provider and ¬†I was interested in an administrative position. There was only one person sitting by the booth¬† and I greeted her warmly with a ‚ÄėHello‚Äô and a smile. However, I was largely ignored by her. Feeling embarrassed, I assumed she may be another job-seeker and the recruiter must have left temporarily. So I waited and rifled through their brochures¬† waiting for the recruiter to return.

Soon, another job-seeker came to the booth and to my surprise she jumped from her seat and proceeded to attend to the ¬†the job-seeker‚Äôs queries. I stood there dumb-founded but tried to listen in to their conversations. When the job-seeker left, I tried to get the recruiter‚Äôs attention but she ignored me again.¬† I¬†was¬† frustrated and angry but¬† did not wish to create a scene for fear that I may lose a job opportunity.¬† I just stood there and stared at her…as fiercely as I could.

Another¬† group of job-seekers came by the booth ¬†and again, the healthcare recruiter jumped from her seat to answer their queries. However, I seemed to notice she ignored the queries from two people in that group. And the others in the group started to notice too. One of them pointed this out and told the recruiter it was rude of her to ignore his friends. And she finally revealed that ¬†her organisation would not take people with a high ‚ÄėBody Mass Index‚Äô (BMI) or in layman‚Äôs terms‚Ķ‚Ķ.they would not take fat people. The whole group was stunned in silence and I did noticed that the two people she ignored in that group were slightly rotund. So, I guess this was probably the reason why ¬†I was ignored too. Feeling wearied and discouraged by now,¬†¬†I proceeded to the third company hoping that my luck would change.

Feeling less confident now,  I could only accord a meek greeting to the recruiter. I was slightly taken aback however by his cheerful and chatty manner and it cheered me up considerably.  I proceeded to ask him more about an Admin Assistant job position in one of their retail shops. However, the recruiter claimed I seemed to be a right fit for a management trainee position and requested that I filled up some forms which I cheerfully did.

After I was done with the forms, he took it and informed me he will pass it on to his ‚Äėsenior‚Äô. I thought to myself, ‚ÄúCould this be finally it? Will I finally get a job after all these months?‚ÄĚ

¬†The recruiter returned¬†after a while but ¬†the look on his face troubled me. The smile and cheerfulness were now¬†gone. His tone changed when he asked for my resume. I asked him why the sudden change? Hhe could only muttered, ‚ÄúI‚Äôm sorry, we are looking for a specific person for the job‚ÄĚ.¬† I left the booth feeling speechless and crestfallen. Words can‚Äôt describe how I felt then and I wondered aimlessly in that massive hall – trying ¬†to recollect myself and regain my thoughts.

As I wandered  aimlessly, I chanced upon a booth at the corner of the hall. The company runs one of the rides in our island theme park. There were five people at the booth and judging by their T-shirts, they were probably employees/recruiters of the company. I wondered why they were there as they were not mentioned or maybe  I might  have missed them on the job-fair’s website.

Curiosity got the better of me and I mustered a smile and walked with my head high straight to their booth. I greeted them with a robust and cheerful ‚ÄúHi guys!‚ÄĚ It must have startled them and they all looked at me and replied cheerfully back “Hi There!”

I threw caution to the wind and promptly asked: ‚ÄúSo what are you guys looking for?‚ÄĚ One of them said they needed an “Instructor”, another said a ‚ÄėCustomer Executive‚Äô. Another promptly asked if I knew what they do, and I admitted that I saw their rides but never tried it before. And he explained their¬†hiring ¬†requirements and job hours which I felt, was something I could easily do.¬† I passed my resume when he asked for it.

I left the booth and went home feeling better after that.

Will I get the job? I do not know as my resume was not tailored for such a job in a theme park.

Did I do the right thing by not following the ‚Äėinterview protocols‚Äô? I do not know that either, but I felt since they run rides at a theme park, they¬†must be ¬†looking for an energetic and ¬†cheerful person.

So why did I felt better  this time round even though  I’m still jobless?

Previously, I would wallowed in self-pity and fall into a depression after¬†been¬†disappointed again ¬†at the jobfairs. And it would take¬† me some time to get out of that ‚Äėemotional hole‚Äô. It has not been easy for me as I could never understand why I do and act the way I did since I had the¬† memory loss due to the recent stroke.

I kept questioning myself: “Am I the one to be blamed for¬† my own failures?”

 However, I felt the recent personality test I took had helped me to understand myself better.  This time, I did not let my emotions get the better of me  when I was rejected by the first three companies. I have  kept an open mind and tried to be flexible while out searching for that elusive  job. In essence, it has been a new awakening and beginning  for me.

I guess  it is time to stop searching for who I was and constantly  living in the past  and to become the person that I can be  and start living  for the future.

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2 Responses to “Jobseeker Account Of A Day At The Job Fair”

  1. [...] Shafie in his article Jobseeker Account Of A Day At The Job Fair  commented: “I  narrowed down those companies which did not specify ethnicity  and age as [...]

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