After nearly a month, I finally got to see one of the career coaches that JobLeaders offers to its card-carrying customers. He was a short, gimpy-walking African-American guy, probably in his 50s, named Jermaine Brown.
The first thing that Mr. Brown pointed out to me is that my résumé stinks.
- It contains an unnecessary Career Objective paragraph that would better serve me as a cover letter.
- It includes that call center job at Affinion that I worked for nearly one month and quit because I wanted no part of a credit card company’s swindling of its cardholders. That job would come up in the job interview, and I would have to shoot myself in the foot trying to explain it.
- It doesn’t contain a long enough Employment History, covering only 3 to 4 years instead of going back at least seven.
- It also contains three outdated references that belongs on a separate sheet of paper, to be given to the employer only upon request.
He put me on the list for the next Résumé Workshop next Tuesday morning, and booked me for a return visit the day after that.
Okay, so I went back home to my computer and I pulled up my most current résumé. My brain got quite thoroughly shell-shocked. What the hell am I going to do with my employment history?
I am confused. Mr. Brown has forced me to face squarely the fact that my past job experience has been all over the place, leading nowhere. Security officer. Inventory counter. Internet troubleshooter. Jack of all trades, master of none. Reynard Swindlehurst’s urging back at the end of 2003 to seek training in something useful in business has done nothing to break me out of the habit of settling for any job I can get fast. To this very day, I have no overall direction to my career.
What to do? Well, I really can’t think of anything except to take a hard look at my résumé, and try to whip it into a functional one, and go to that workshop.