Thursday, February 9, 2017

Getting The Job

When I moved on from soap work to work in other genres, I rewrote my resume constantly. I understood that my skill set wouldn't necessarily be obvious to employers in other genres, but I believed that with some explanation and proper presentation, I could get past that. Turned out, it was a harder road than I thought. I began to joke that people were saying "you've only worked on 42 minute shows, but we have a 41 minute show--how could you possibly know how to do THAT?"

I had some good interviews and some awful ones. I was reminded daily how much I didn't know and how little what I did know was worth to some people. And over and over, I worked to prove myself.

When I woke up from my midday post-work nap earlier this week to find out about the confirmation of a cabinet appointee with a resume not even close to fitting the position and a televised "interview" that made some of my worst interviews look darn good, I was more shocked than I probably should have been. The voices of opposition had not been enough to change the course of events as I thought they might be able to. My kids and countless other children and families would be paying the price. And perhaps almost as shattering, a job candidate who was ill-suited for the job AND woefully unprepared for her interview had gotten the gig, as if none of those things mattered.

Obviously, my horror at the injustice of the hiring process is the least of the concerns here. But in the context of "you've only done 42 minute shows," this was an assault not just on the educational system, but on the labor system as well. For the common person, qualifications and preparation would matter. For the common person, respect for the system and the people affected by it would matter. But here, only money and politics mattered.

There have been, and will continue to be, many reminders that what we, as workers and as re-inventors of ourselves, go through isn't expected of those with money and power, that the standards that should matter are waved when it's convenient. As people who had more expected of us, we should expect more. And as people who fought through the letters and the resumes and the interviews, we shouldn't stop fighting for dedication, preparation, humility, and respect (for those interviewing us, and for those we will serve), to count. That's what should matter in getting the job--and getting the job done.

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