[rescue] Re: Perverse Question

Sheldon T. Hall shel at cmhcsys.com
Tue Jun 17 11:40:12 CDT 2003

Phil Stracchino said ...

> I got a rejection on a very promising job the other day specifically
> because, basically, I've been out of work too long.  I've been wondering
> when that would start happening.
> I have a nasty suspicion it's all downhill from there.

I think you just have to change your approach.

I got canned from a job that had become distinctly "un-fun" in 1990.  Since
I got a nice "exit package" and had some experience solving problems that it
seemed folks would like to pay me to solve, I turned to consulting.
Primarily, I did contract system development, using the same tools my former
employer was using, and in whose development I had a hand.

Things went swimmingly for a number of years, but I wasn't really keeping up
with industry trends very well.  About 1997 I hit a prolonged slack period,
and went looking for a job.

Most of the rejections I got, and I got a bunch, boiled down to "you and
your experience are too old, and you've been away too long."

I managed to limp along, consulting, until I got into a slightly different
"circle" and met folks who work for my present employer.  We're not cutting
edge, but experience, especially experience crafting stuff that works the
first time and doesn't cause problems later, is highly valued.  I couldn't
be happier with any employment situation.

So ... my advice is to get out more, network more, and aim for places that
are about the same distance behind the cutting edge as you are perceived to

And, if you're in the mid-west, or want to be, let me know.  We're not
"always hiring", but it's a smart, private company that has the good sense
to hire good people when it can find 'em.


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