waitingman: (Still Waiting)
The Count

Ever feel like you're just killing time, in between events & waiting for the next thing to happen in a few days, weeks, months...

My life is like that all the time. Well - parts of it are... at different times. At this moment, my professional life is suspended, unable to really progress because we're spending the majority of October in the USA (L.A. to Colorado via the north rim of the Grand Canyon, then Colorado through Arches National Park, Bryce Canyon, Antelope Canyon, Monument Valley, Las Vegas, Death Valley, the top of Yosemite, San Francisco, Big Sur, Carmel & back to L.A.). We have friends to catch up with, friends to road-trip with & cowboy boots to buy (If you are in any of the above areas between the 4th & the 28th of October, you know how to find me...). So there's not much I can achieve in the way of applications, interviews etc... I did land a job as a 'Mystery Shopper' which means I get to evaluate other salespeople's abilities, techniques & degree of slavery to KPIs. I've been mystery-shopped in the past & know it can be a pain when you get the report back from your Boss, so I'm caught between being brutally effective, or giving the benefit of the doubt from a sense of camaraderie. Your god knows I've been on the receiving end of some appalling service, so if that happens, I'll let rip, but otherwise, I'm inclined to compromise within the myriad grey areas retail sales can provide

The loungeroom is covered in suitcases & piles of stuff, amongst the usual detritus any kitten owner is used to... We are on a mission to eat as much perishable food from the cupboards & fridge as possible... not helped by the last-minute round of catch-up dinners we're trying to fit in before we go. Everybody has a shopping list they want to share with us over a meal...

Layla's prognosis is good for now, which is one less thing to obsess over while I'm away. She's down to half a tablet per day, with the option of twice a day if lethargy & pallidity reclaim their dominance. Our cat-sitting neighbours are under instruction to make the best decisions 'for the cat' while we're away... but it tentatively looks like it won't come to anything so dramatic

Fingers, legs & eyes crossed
waitingman: (Orang Utan)
... Remember me?

Been thinking about posting again - like a lot of erstwhile LJ people do, I'm sure, but have finally put fingers to keyboard today, mostly because of this article which probably had loftier aims than simply getting people to 'blog again, but you have to start somewhere, before you leap off the grid entirely to devote yourself to... music, photography, world domination... whatever your 99% project is

Another reason it can be hard to sit down & write:

Breakfast Time?

Layla... my most common view of her. Since becoming an only cat, following the death of her sister, she's... well, not exactly clingy, but very fond of climbing onto me, finding a comfortable spot & going to sleep. Which usually renders one or both of my arms inoperable for anything much beyond stroking her. Especially when I'm sitting at the computer. All part of her masterplan - cutting me off from the outside world so that I remain under her 4 thumbs, only to adore her... & feed her

She's also loving the fact that, yet again, I've been made redundant, so have a lot of free time to be sat on... regardless of whether I'm trying to write an application letter or not. How she'll feel when the money finally runs out, followed by the food, is pretty clear - there'll be one last WaitingMan-sized banquet, then she'll find her way out the door into the world

Redundant - surplus to requirements, un-needed, unnecessary, unsuitable. Having this happen 3 times in almost as many years makes you wonder about reasons - beyond the glib excuse of an unstable industry. After all, the common factor in all of these 'redundancies' has been me. On more than one accasion I've been told that, as a Salesperson, I'm not "aggressive enough", or in other words, I don't railroad people into buying what I want to sell them, I try to find out what they want or need. And that can sometimes take time. More time than the modern sales environment will allow. Apparently. The truth seems to be that, despite many companies claiming to be all about customer service, the reality is that we... 'they' want to fast-track you into a prepackaged box & have you pay for it within 5 minutes of walking through the door. Salespeople just don't have the time to sell any more... it seems

I've been called an 'Old School' Salesperson. I used to think it was a compliment, before 3 redundancies made me realise it's a criticism. Funny... my clients always seemed to be happy. Problem being that I had fewer of them than was desired, regardless of how satisfied they are

So, I've been looking at other things I can do (apart from taking photos & playing music) with all the peripheral skills one picks up over the years. Unfortunately, most of them seem to point in a direction I've been reluctant to go since arriving at the University of Sydney in 1985... Teaching. I've never had the desire, nor believed I have the temperament, to stand in front of a bunch of people & try to inspire & impart knowledge, facts & processes to them. Especially to children, with whom I've never had any empathy - even when I was one

Even so... why is it, when you're out of work & wanting to re-train & try a new track, that courses are so damned expensive??!! I visited the website of a reputable business training institution & was knocked dollar-&-centsless by the cost of a certificate course in corporate training. My severance package wasn't even going to cover the fees, let alone the time required to complete the course whilst not working

If you ever think that nobody cares if you live or die... try missing a couple of payments

We're okay though... Layla won't be having that Grande Bouffe any time soon. Long-suffering Partner is still gainfully employed at the coalface, occasionally thinking about how her pickaxe could be better used hacking at softer tissues than materials that only profit others

Oh to be free as a bird...

The Return Of Bruce?
waitingman: (Debtor's Prison)
Before & Behind

First photo with the new phone - the Sony Xperia 3, after my old phone gave up its ghost... & SIM card

I've decided I'm not really in love with the new job. It reminds me of the last time I worked for a large, national corporation - too many chiefs, not enough indians, the indians are badly paid &, as a result, are all eager to climb over each other to become a chief. So I've started looking at the job e-mails & sites again - got a rejection e-mail from a recruiter today for a postion with an international audio company... damn... but maybe I've been out of that particular field for a bit too long & am out of date. There have been a lot of developments in the audio-visual world in the last eight years or so

"But if you ask for a rise, it's no surprise they're giving none away... away... away"
waitingman: (Still Waiting)
Morning All,

A busy end to the old year & a busier start to the new one. The new job seems to be finally kicking into gear, meaning I've been getting home absolutely ragged... & then, between Christmas & New Year, it was time to take this guy for a walk/splash/frisbee-fest



Yes, Pirate was staying with us while his owners headed south for the Season. Love that dog. I really do, but wow - we both sank into the sofas on the day he returned home & didn't move for hours

Other job opportunities thought dead & buried before taking up this new one, have come back to life in the New Year (surely Easter is the time for that?). One is still appealing, one is... not so much, but I may jump through the hoops for the practice at least
waitingman: (Still Waiting)
Well, that was a surprise...

I thought I was just going to introduce myself as a potential candidate for a job. turns out they would have loved me to start immediately - this morning - if I could have. Fastest interview ever. Probably helped by the fact I'd come recommended by a colleague & another colleague was at the place this morning when I showed up & he recommended me as well... It's good to have friends. And a good reputation!!

The downside is I just made the call to the company I was due to start with on Monday & boy, were they unimpressed - basically telling me that I couldn't do that after having "accepted a job" with them. I'd signed nothing, had no official offer made, just an e-mail from the Recruitment Agency telling me to front up on Monday. So, legally, I hadn't accepted anything... only the fact that I'd be working for a bad company with a worse name in their industry. An uncomfortable conversation, but... Bullet dodged

I now owe 2 guys either some serious favours or something pleasant from Dan Murphy's...
waitingman: (Still Waiting)
Blerp... The morning after the night befpre...

Not hung over - didn't drink very much at all last night, but definitely emerging from a food coma. December is traditionally spent with various friends & colleagues, at various tables, having food plonked in front of you, which you plough through as you review the year that was... & last night was no exception

The last Wafflers meeting of the year is always a buffet affair & I've spent this past week organising numbers, doing seating arrangements & liasing with caterers, making sure that the 73 guests would all get something they like to eat. For such is the job of Dinner Secretary in the Club & I've been doing it for nearly 2 years... & boy, does it take a toll

Most months we have somewhere between 30-40 people & even that can be a bit tricky, 'cause everyone has their preference as to who they sit with, what they can & can't eat... L-SP & I have dubbed the 3rd week of the month 'Wafflers Week' & have learned that any disagreements we have, about anything, can be put down to the stress of dealing with that finicky bunch & are not to be seen as anything other than pressure relief, So finagling with almost twice the usual number means that this week, it's probably been best for L-SP to not talk to me at all... except that, because of the aforementioned social nature of December, we've probably talked more than usual. No black eyes, or divorce lawyers though... I'd say we've come through rather well... fed !!

Can't wait for April 2015's AGM, when my term on the Committee is up & they'll have to find a new Dinner Secretary... Boy, will we give 'em hell with our requests...

An 11th hour reprieve might be at hand for my career too. I got a call just as we were heading out last night, from an immediate past colleague, with news of a job opportunity with a much larger & much more reputable company than the one I'm starting with on Monday... & in the same product range that I've been working with over the last 2 years. Which is good, because I wasn't looking forward to emptying my head of all the technical info I've gathered on it, so that there'll be room for the new stuff I'll be flogging. Anyway, hopefully off to see a man about a horse this morning. What does one wear on a Saturday when going to see a potential employer, but it's not actually an 'interview' as such, more just an introduction & fact-finding field trip?
waitingman: (Still Waiting)
And here I sit, on my lopsided office chair, now with 2 wheels missing, physically getting a new slant on the world's goings-on

The job applications continue to flow from my outbox, with little in return but automated replies that my application has been received & most likely sent straight to a junkmail folder which is automatically emptied every 20 minutes. I've been to 1 interview on the western outskirts of town, where a 'nice' lady told me how many hours I'd be working officially & how many site visits I'm required to do per week outside those hours, how many weekends I'd never see & how my trim little beard would have to go, in accordance with company dress policy. If I had the full, hipster bushranger birds nest, I'd understand, but... really? In the 21st Century, we're doing this? No Sikhs working for the company then, I'm guessing

I went to visit the office I'd be working from yesterday & met with the Manager. I'd only wanted to pop in for a recce - 5 minutes tops, but he took me through to the lunch room & started giving me sales tips & jargon while making his sandwich & trading in-jokes with his other staff member. I managed to extricate myself after half an hour & he said he'd be calling the 'nice' lady to give her 'feedback' on what he thought. Up to that point, I hadn't realised I was being interviewed... I thought I was checking on them!!

To be honest, I don't want to work for them - their reputation isn't great, with regards to both their products & their conditions. Long-Suffering Partner looked them up & sent me a couple of links to less-than-impressed forums & reviews. Even though the office would be local to me, the official hours eat up most of the day & the extracurricular site visits could add at least another 90 minutes to that. All for the absolute minimum salary they could offer without being laughed at, or reprimanded by the Fair Work Ombudsman

The other shoe is, of course, that some income is better than none. I wonder when/if they'll call...
waitingman: (Still Waiting)
So what a year it's been

As prevously mentioned, I was made redundant twice this year, which accelerates the trend started in about 2008, when the bottom started to fall out of the Sales industry... or at least in the sectors of it I tend to work in - goods that are nice to have, but not really life-essential (though you try living in a house with no carpets, television, heating or a BBQ out the back!!)

I can lose count of the jobs I've had in the last 6 years without trying terribly hard, which is not a good thing to see on one's CV... & potential employers always ask about it. What frustrates me about that is when I explain the circumstances to them & ask them about the stability of their company & its plans to ride out this downturn, there's always a rosy picture painted... & yet, here I am, 6 months after starting my newest role, banking my latest small redundancy cheque & wondering where to now?

When I close my eyes & picture my perfect job right now, I see a desk with a tray on the left full of papers & a tray on the right that's empty. At the end of the working day, I see a tray on the right full of papers & an empty tray on the left. Repeat 5 times 'til Friday, with breaks for lunch
waitingman: (Debtor's Prison)
I have only two things to say::::

'May your balls turn into bicycle wheels & backpedal up your arsehole'

And...

'May your chickens turn into emus & kick your shithouse down'

Enough said
waitingman: (Droopy!)
A letter of offer & an employment contract landed in my Inbox tonight. Accepted & signed

Starting on Monday next week, I am, once again, a contributing member of society... so can feel fully justified in complaining about how my tax dollars are mis-spent, like everyone else does

Man... that was a long six months...

Late

Feb. 15th, 2013 09:25 am
waitingman: (Mother's Milk)
Oops... time got away from me last night & I forgot to update... You can all stop holding your breath now

An odd Valentine's Day really... I had an interview in the City, which has yielded another one today. Then the Loved One & I had lunch at a pub at Circular Quay, before I rode the ferry back to Manly &, eventually, the bus home

The Loved One had to work last night, so no candle-lit dinner or romantic post-prandial strolls on moonlit beaches (it rained last night anyway... Hope none of you Lovebirds out there caught a cold!!). As it turned out, the beef & Guinness pie I had for lunch was substantial enough to tide me over dinnertime anyway. A visit from my Father, who wanted to escape Downton Abbey at his place... He arrived carrying a DVD of the original True Grit ~ the John Wayne one... Unfortunately, I saw the Coen Bros remake with Jeff Bridges last year & couldn't help comparing the two. John Wayne was actually pretty good in his ~ seems he finally learned how to act in his last few movies ~ but Glen Campbell was hammy & awkward. Robert Duvall fared better, but was the victim of 'Stage Musical'-style wardrobe, way too clean cut to be a villain on the run. The girl who played Matty Ross was good, but a little annoying. In the end I actually wanted her to suffer the fate Matty does in the new, closer-to-the-book version (Spoiler:~ she doesn't), whereas when it happened in the new movie, it was a shocking heartstring-puller because her character is better written & better acted...

Into town after midnight to collect the Loved One from work, then back home & zzzzzzzzzzz

Now, which tie shall I wear?
waitingman: (Still Waiting)
Interview 2 for a job well within my abilities, but I'm not the person who has to believe that...

Today has been one of those days when you wish you could just fast-forward to the next stage of your life because this current one is getting frustrating, boring, annoying & old

Next...
waitingman: (Mother's Milk)
For those Asian friends of mine...

So a trip to a Buddhist temple in Wetherill Park today, became a trip to a second temple in Cabramatta. Feeling very devout now... if unenlightened

Having trouble typing as I have pain in a tendon running from my left wrist into a couple of fingers. Come on Nurofen+ do your damned job!!

Speaking of which, an interview tomorrow for a nice little earner. A safe job, eh guv'nor??!!

Bedwards...
waitingman: (Waitsing Man)
On with the business attire, into the city, up to the eleventh floor & through the motions required to get past middlemen to the decision-makers...

Who I'll be meeting with on Monday

When did this all get so complicated??!! And could someone please explain why I have to go through an interview with a 'consultant' who's never been in Sales & knows nothing about either the company or product I'd be working with... My young friend ~ what is the point of you??!!??
waitingman: (Mother's Milk)
So, Filipino food... Quite tasty in fact. Goes well with coconut water

Waiting... waiting for employment news, good or bad. Either is better than nothing
waitingman: (Still Waiting)
The wild weather has returned... Outside now, the wind is actually howling. We had a huge downpour of rain for about twenty minutes before it settled into an hour-long shower, as well as some impressive flashes of lightning & thunder which shook the Manor when it was right over us

But it's an old, sturdy house this... brick, concrete & a solid roof. With any luck, this weather will do some damage to the McMansion owned by the family over the back fence, for whom I have little time, no regard & couldn't find a redeeming quality in if you threatened me at gunpoint... which would only give me ideas...

An interview for a part-time counter-jockey job today, which went well. As I said to the Loved One afterwards ~ "If you aim for the stormwater drain, you'll at least hit the gutter"
waitingman: (Dark Times)
Well, the good news is that last night's Indian meal had no after-effects. No Gandhi's Revenge, no Delhi Belly, no Black Hole of Calcutta. Nope, naan of those...

Now... Of all the dozens & dozens of jobs applied for over the last few weeks, I had one interview for a sales role I really wanted & I had a phone interview for a part time counter-monkey job that I only went for as a worst-case-scenario liferaft. As cruel Fate would have it, I have a second interview for that one... never heard back from the one I wanted. O fortune, how you mock me!!
waitingman: (Still Waiting)
Wishing & hoping & praying... & waiting... 'cause that's what I do

Surely someone has to end this drought & offer me employment some time soon...
waitingman: (Dark Times)
Well, managed to get some sleep last night, without resorting to a boring book. In fact 'World War Z - An Oral History...' is, after an evening & morning's reading, turning out to be far from boring...

Otherwise, a typical day of ups & downs ~ the death of my printer, with a paper jam error message unsupported by physical evidence & no amount of torchlight inspection, 'ER'-style histrionics, threats, swearing, or little taps with a little hammer revealing any lost, strayed, or recalcitrant fragments causing physical detriment. Nor did a websearch yield anything more than the usual advice of "Press several buttons in a random fashion & see what happens" variety

Resisting the urge to swear even worse & louder when the phone rang this afternoon was a wise decision, as it helped line up an interview for gainful employment. Nothing new, nothing fancy, just more of the same... but no less welcome for that... All I require from an employer these days is to see their five-year plan. They're always asking me for mine & then the damned place falls apart after two or three years, so I think I've earned the right to some guaranteed longevity

... After all, according to my birth certificate, my middle name isn't anything remotely like 'Jonah'

Been reading an online biography of Robert Fripp... my guitar hero & unofficial Life-Coach. Musically, personally & even emotionally, it seems we have many similarities, although I find myself operating on a less rational & more organic approach to a common goal... due, as far as I can see, to differences in personality, certainly, but mostly to circumstance. Life seems to be a lot more layered & complicated now than when he was able to make the decisions he did. But then, isn't it always..?

The question then becomes:~ How does one simplify life & eliminate distractions enough to make valid choices about direction & approach? Things like income... & all the lifestyle choices & obligations associated with its level...
waitingman: (Dark Times)
Not as hot today as expected, but still warmer than Summer's generally been up 'til now. Here on the coast, we had a southerly breeze & occasionally wind for most of the day

Another domestic day ~ washing sheets'n'shirts, clearing kitchen cupboards, then heading out to re-stock them & pick up supplies for a stir-fry dinner... the body was crying out for crunchy green things (& not the green things we cleared out of the cupboards!!)

A couple of movies from Foxtel this evening:~ The Adjustment Bureau & The Adventures of Tintin. Both okay in their ways, but I don't think we missed anything by not seeing them in a cinema. Glad we watched them, but don't need to see them again

I'm sure I used to go out on Saturday nights... I'm sure we will again, but it makes fiscal sense to raise the drawbridge & not venture far from WaitingManor when times are fiscally tough. I sent out about a dozen job applications over the last few days & have only had one automated reply... which was a rejection

Ah well... Chin up, chest out, soldier on...

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