Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Why we're getting 'mad as hell'

Another day, another couple of résumés sent off into cyberspace, never to return to Earth again.

Or so it feels.

Which is why I took such absolute joy at reading this item from a former financial services guy who has been laid off longer than I.

The headline (not his original) certainly speaks to those of us who share his situation: Hey, Employers, It's Time You Got Some Manners And Started Responding To Job Applicants Who Take The Time And Effort To Apply.

It's something anyone/everyone who is/has been unemployed would like to yell at least once.

I'll blame the current jobs picture for the urge to be uncivil.

The country still is losing jobs month by month, although at a slower pace than at the height of the Great Recession. In January, the unemployment rate dropped a bit, the Labor Department said last week, but revisions made to 2009's numbers now indicate we've lost 8.4 million jobs since the recession's start in December 2007.

What's more, says a report from the Economic Policy Institute, "In a testament to both the enormity of the current crisis plus the very weak jobs growth of the 2000-07 business cycle, the U.S. labor market started 2010 with fewer jobs than it had a decade ago..."

That's pretty astounding.

The EPI report included this diagram:

So, yeah, we job-seekers (there now are 6.1 of us for every available job, according to EPI) can get a bit testy.

Our applications go unacknowledged; the references you ask for aren't contacted; you choose to hire someone else and we hear about it when the successful candidate announces his new job online (happened to me); we show up for a scheduled interview only to be told the job was just filled (also happened to me).

I'll resist the temptation to embed a clip from the 1976 movie "Network." Instead, I'll leave you with this really creative take on the famous "mad as hell" speech by Howard Beale (Peter Finch), as posted to Vimeo by a young guy from Texas.

Mad As Hell! Kinetic Typography from Aaron Leming on Vimeo.


Joel L. Young said...


Great post. I'm the "financial services guy" you reference. The data you present is fascinating and grim, though not surprising.

Best of luck to you in your search.


Joel L. Young said...

By the way, the title, as displayed on The Business Insider, was their construct. Naively (I'm not, obviously, a professional writer), I failed to specify a particular title. It occurs to me, though, that my original title may have elicited a similar response.




Thanks for your comments, Joel, and good luck to you, too, as you search. Although you say you're not a "professional writer," you write from the heart and your prose sings.