Re: What's A TW Got To DO To Get A Job Around Here?!

Subject: Re: What's A TW Got To DO To Get A Job Around Here?!
From: Tom Murrell <trmurrell -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sun, 24 Feb 2002 18:23:00 -0800 (PST)

--- Bonnie Granat <bgranat -at- editors-writers -dot- info> wrote:
> I'm going to have to move, I guess. Nothing here in Boston for which I
> qualify. Very few jobs advertised. Very depressing!

You know, I've been following this thread with some interest. Lots of
interesting opinions and lots of unemployment angst. Certainly the anxiety that
comes from being unemployed, which most of us have felt at least once and some
of us have felt several times, is a real thing. Nothing cures it but the next
job. Or so it seems, though I commend to you the advice someone gave that your
self worth as a person is intrinsic to you; it is not based on what you do.

All of that said, I want to know why so many writers are looking a job posting
to see what they're NOT qualified for. I would like to suggest that you're
looking at the wrong parts of those job requirements. As several people have
pointed out--and this is true in both the good times and the bad--almost all
job requirements are dream lists of the perfect person. Paint a red S on their
shirts, and you have the total picture.

Look at those job postings to see how you DO qualify. I'll bet that many of you
qualify in 8 out of 10 of the listed job requirements, maybe even 9 of 10. But
you focus on the one thing or two that you are either weak in or don't qualify
in. Take a job that you think you don't qualify in and break it down to a
bulleted list. Then list the areas where you match. You will find that you are
MUCH MORE QUALIFIED than you're giving yourself credit for.

Both my current job and my previous one involved industries/fields about which
I knew nothing. I worked in telecom for four and a half years, but when I
started I could barely spell telephone. Same thing for my current job in credit
processing. I've learned a tremendous amount about how all that works.

But then I don't market myself as someone who needs to know everything about
everything. I view the job of Technical Writer as one where I'm supposed to
learn about things so I can explain them to others. I see the job of writer as
one where first you learn, then you teach. So what I offer is good writing
skills, decent tool knowledge, and the ability to get the job done. I can't do
that if I focus on the one or two things I don't know.

Do I get every job I apply for? Hell no. But that's not the point. The point is
to focus on what you bring to the table. If the prospective employer/client
likes it, you're in. If not, move on to the next one.

Tom Murrell
Lead Technical Writer
Alliance Data Systems
Columbus, Ohio
mailto:tmurrell -at- columbus -dot- rr -dot- com
Personal Web Page -
Page Last Updated 02/11/02

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Re: What's A TW Got To DO To Get A Job Around Here?!: From: Bonnie Granat

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