where are you now?

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Every December, I publish “where are they now” updates from people whose questions I answered here in the past year. It’s time for 2012’s version, so …

If you’ve had your question answered here in the last year, please send me an update and let us know how your situation turned out. Leave no juicy detail out!  I’ll post updates as they come in.

And if there’s anyone you especially want to hear an update from, mention it here and I’ll reach out to those people directly.

{ 127 comments… read them below or add one }

  1. Jamie

    Can I just say that checking the RSS feed and seeing only “Where are you now?” for this entry caused me to answer in my head before I realized you probably weren’t talking directly to me. ;)

    Reply
  2. Victoria

    I asked a few months ago whether I could put “PHR – anticipated” on my resume and you said “Sure” (I think it was a Terse Thursday LOL) … several of your commenters admonished that I shouldn’t be too confident as only 50% pass the PHR the first time. Well, I’m happy to report that I passed last weekend, AND also started a new job this week! So it wasn’t necessary to have the PHR to land the new job, but it will certainly help me in this new challenge!

    Reply
    1. Jamie

      Yay! I love updates with good news!

      I want to hear an update from everyone who got the dream job, promotion, raise, etc.

      The other updates are always interesting, too, but there is something so pleasant about an RSS feeder full of hope.

      Reply
    2. Victoria Nonprofit

      Congrats!

      Also, since I’m a different Victoria, I’ll cede our name to you. I used to be more active but it seems you are these days – let’s not confuse people! Henceforth I will be Victoria Nonprofit (to distinguish from Victoria HR :)).

      Reply
      1. Long Time Admin

        Very sensible and considerate of you.

        I used to be “Worker Bee” several years ago on the Working Wounded website, and now I see we have someone here with that moniker. It gives me a little jolt when I see it, but I’m getting used to it.

        Reply
      2. Kathryn

        I did the same thing. I used to use the nickname “Katie” on this board, but someone else started using it pretty consistently, so I just decided to start using something else. Easier that way. :)

        Reply
  3. Andie

    I would like to know if the woman who was upset that the doctor’s office where she was a patient would not hire (the one where she asked the front desk person about her qualifications) ever found a job. That was such a hot button thread. I think there were over 300 posts and the women swore she would never ask a question again but I am curious to know if she ever found work.

    Reply
    1. Ask a Manager Post author

      She’s actually my role model for “come back in a week when it’s all less fresh and read it from a less raw place, and see if the advice feels different now.” She did exactly that and has been incredibly kind and gracious ever since (and comments here sometimes), which I think we sometimes forget how hard it can be to do when a group of strangers are telling you that you’re wrong!

      Anonymous, here’s the link:
      http://www.askamanager.org/2012/05/employer-wont-give-me-a-fair-chance-to-interview.html

      Reply
      1. Jamie

        Yes, she really is an example of handling criticism with grace – far more poised than I’d have been and without any cursing…which I wouldn’t have managed. I admire that too, so much.

        Reply
    2. Amy

      Oh my goodness, why did I allow myself to start reading this post on a quiet day in the office? 400 comments and I couldn’t tear myself away!

      Reply
  4. sab

    I want to know what happened to the guy who wanted to “borrow” his boss’ assistant for help on projects after he was there for about a month (right?). That was an…. interesting question.

    Reply
    1. KayDay

      Yes, I’d like to hear from him to (I think I said some unkind things to that guy). He did come back quite apologetic, but I still would love to hear about it.

      Reply
    1. SJ

      Yeah, I was going to say the same thing. My guess is if everyone suspected correctly, it would be a long time before she would ever realize it and be able to come back and talk about it. But I’m hoping for an update too!

      Reply
    2. ChristineH

      Oh right….I think I remember that one. IIRC, wasn’t she a little perturbed at our suspicions, or did I imagine that?

      Reply
      1. K.

        More than a little – she thought we were all nuts for suggesting that her husband had acted inappropriately, and did a lot of snarking in the comments.

        Reply
        1. A Bug!

          She didn’t just snark. She had a full-fledged meltdown, and then snarked about how worked up everyone else was. It was painful to read.

          That said, I genuinely hope she’s doing well.

          Reply
  5. Jen in RO

    The woman whose husband resigned for her did leave some replies in the comments, but I’d love a follow-up a couple of months after the fact.

    Reply
    1. A Bug!

      “You judgmental mean people were all wrong, we’re doing great, because I’m back where I belong, which is at home, keeping my children from doing all of the drugs.”

      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        Please don’t mock her life choices. While I agree it does not appear to be the most healthy of relationships and her husband should not have resigned for her, those aren’t reasons to rag on someone’s choice to be with family and raise their kids if they have the means and ability to do so.

        Reply
        1. A Bug!

          I’m not mocking her life choices, nor would I. The focus of that comment is the attitude she displayed in her own comments, the implication of which was that families where both parents work are parenting wrong, and that becoming a stay at home mother is the only way to parent “right”.

          Reply
            1. Ask a Manager Post author

              If I’m remembering correctly, no one had any problem with that for her; as A Bug! says, it was her judgment of others who made different choices that was the issue.

              Reply
              1. A Bug!

                Yes. This is what I was aiming at. In retrospect, I shouldn’t have submitted that comment; I had just finished reviewing all of her comments from that post so it was feeling very fresh, emotionally. If I had waited a bit to let it settle I would have chosen differently.

                I don’t wish to contribute to a mean atmosphere here. I apologize for doing so.

                Reply
        2. Forrest

          No one’s mocking her life choices – A Bug! is mocking what she said re: kids and drugs. She implied that she was better by staying at home.

          Reply
  6. Jamie

    From April 25, the OP whose co-workers were gossiping about another co-worker’s sex life. The Craig’s List pics.

    Reply
      1. Jamie

        Yes – that was it. Apparently ‘best’ and ‘worst’ are synonyms in my mind. Aren’t we glad I’m not doing anyone’s review? :)

        Reply
  7. Update

    I wrote in with the question about letting another candidate go first. I have since had two more interviews but that’s it. I continue to heed AAM advice and apply apply apply. Wish I had more news.

    Reply
    1. Victoria HR

      My best advice, from someone who just landed a new job, is to definitely tailor your resume to each job posting. I started copying text right from the job posting and pasting it into my resume (of course it *was* things that I had experience doing, I didn’t falsify). Or you could go to a word cloud generator and paste the job description in to get the cloud of most-used words, and make sure that they are used in your resume as much as possible. Once I started tailoring my resume as opposed to just throwing the same one at every job posting, I started getting calls for interviews.

      Reply
  8. Question asker

    I had several questions answered by Alison (here and privately) and got lots of awesome advice…wouldn’t know where to begin “updating” :)

    Reply
  9. LL

    Feb 8 – bedbugs in the office

    May 20 – my job offer was revoked before I started — and after I quit my job

    Aug 12 – your employer sucks and isn’t going to change (any of the OPs)

    Reply
    1. K.

      Oh, yeah, the 5/20 one about basically being left high and dry – I’d love an update on that. I think the overall response in the comments was “Wow, that sucks.”

      Reply
  10. jesicka309

    Can we get a list of the ‘hottest’ topics this year? It looks like the comments have exploded this year. Would be great to see which topics generated the most discussion.

    Reply
    1. Ask a Manager Post author

      Yes! At the end of the month, I’ll do a list of the 10 most popular posts of the year, and the 10 least popular (the last of which I for some reason find strangely fascinating).

      And yeah, traffic has gone way up this year — more than doubled from last year (and it was already what I considered high last year), which has increased the comments accordingly.

      Reply
      1. Steve G

        I read this blog almost everyday at work, and I found the ones that have few comments just as good as the ones that had many, many more interesting than the ones with many comments. However, I just didn’t have anything to comment. On the other hand, some of the most popular posts were about things that were blatantly or disgusting, which isn’t as interesting as uncovering something more subtle that can exist without a good manager uncovering it.

        Reply
        1. Steve G

          Oh and I started becoming a very frequent reader after sending in a question last December on a new employee that wanted to quit, then decided they didn’t want to, and how to handle the new employee – did they decide to stay because they wanted to, or because of money? Was it an empty threat, or would they be looking? How do I approach them?

          As I recall, their were over 150 comments, and many accused me of being snobby and that I must have somehow been condescending due to the way I wrote, and other posters defending me – even though I never thought anything I wrote was condescending or rude to begin with.

          Regardless, I did my best to accommodate the newbie the next few months. We got a shipload of new customers in March and the newbie blossomed into my vision of what they would be, working 10 hours/day, doing field visits to monitor techs, handling many customer and payment issues, etc. in addition to a slue of excel reports. However, they always were taking things people said the wrong way and analyzing them to death, and there was always the silent treatment being given to someone for some stupid reason.

          In June, a younger employee who was not fit for their job was messing up a revenue stream for us so badly it just had to be taken off of him. It ended up getting dumped on newbie. Very unfair. Newbie was so busy as it was, and was working 10 hours day at that time, while the younger employee was coming in 9-5, so not even a full 40 hour week when lunch was taken into account. Newbie felt very dumped on and overwhelmed. Actually, anyone would have in the situation, but situations like this were magnified 10X in newbie’s head.

          I launched a personal campaign against younger employee’s laziness and lack of concern for us making money, and re-did some of his work to show his manager he was dragging out simple tasks to avoid more complicated/unpleasant work that was supposed to be getting done. I was at a point where we were either going to take said revenue stream off of the newbie, or share it temporarily amongst 3 people until the backlog of issues and mistakes caused by younger employee were fixed.

          The day before we were to discuss this in a group meeting (a very busy day all of this could have been put on the back burner, BTW), newbie stormed back to younger employee’s manager to hash it out on their own. I was unaware of this. As per younger employee’s manager, the newbie was reasonable in the beginning, but it quickly escalated into a much more dramatic drawn-out talk than needed to be. When I was done with back-to-back calls in a conference room, I came back to find newbie gone.

          Newbie never came back. It was a shame the issue newbie walked-out over was going to be solved that week anyway. Actually, newbie had so much other work going on that they could have completely set aside the problem work for the rest of the week. But some people just want to fight it all out, here and now, and can’t mentally rest until it’s all done.

          I worked 60-70 hours/week (Really, like until midnight on fridays for ex.) to fill the gap until we found ideal newbie #2 in August. She is a dream. She glosses over any negative or ackward situation with poise and humor. She is everything a boss would want. In fact, we all got a kick out of her making a sales contact in a cab her 2nd week, because she was so utterly unprepared to do so, and she is not in sales.

          As per younger employee, he left 1 month after newbie, so original newbie would have been vindicated if they stayed!

          Reply
          1. A teacher

            It sounds like they were dealing with a classic case of burnout: emotional exhaustion with too many duties and too much time at work, depersonalization in that they were just a role filler that got dumped on (and maybe kept out of the loop on ypur meetings to fix the situatuin, you dont specify), and total lack of personal accomplishment or feeling ineffective/out of control when things got dmped on them. Some people handle stress (or burnout)differently. They may have just finally had it with being dumped on…did they know you were meeting about resolving it or were they kept out of the loop? Not saying hashing it out on own was a great idea but sometimes it does feel like the only option.

            Reply
            1. Jamie

              This is what I was coming to post but A Teacher said it first and better.

              And can I tell you it makes me feel so much better when a teacher’s iPad is also challenged when it comes to spelling? Sometimes I read my posts written on mine or my phone and I just cringe.

              Reply
              1. A Teacher

                I did my master’s thesis on it so burnout is something that I find fascinating to study (not that I want anyone to experience it) and to teach to my students

                Reply
                1. Jamie

                  I really think this is something about which more managers need education.

                  One sign of bad management, imo, is when sub-par performers are tolerated indefinitely and excellent performers have to absorb the slack because they are the path of least resistance. This isn’t just a morale problem – it’s a cause of burn out in many cases. Sure, the work is getting done – but if the work load is so inequitable that some people are doing the work of others (incompetence rewarded) something is going to give at some point…and that’s how you lose high performing people.

            2. Steve G

              Maybe it was burnout, but the person wasn’t even doing the extra work then, there was only talk about it. And I didn’t give them more details about my meetings on the extra work (newbie knew they were happening) because newbie analyzed everything everyone said, and I didn’t want to create more friction with newbie being angry at someone for something I told them they said, perhaps without thinking, in a private meeting.

              Not that I was perfect, still trying to make sense of it.

              Reply
              1. A Teacher

                You don’t have to be doing more work in order to experience burnout–there can be an imbalance in roles–which you stated the newbie was experiencing since they took on a second person’s role–and that’s just for the emotional exhaustion component. They could also have had stuff going on at home that they didn’t mention–poor work/life balance can contribute as well. People that analyze and become cynical (glass half-empty) also are more prone to burnout as well…at least in the service industries.

                By leaving the newbie out of the conversation, he/she probably felt some lack of control (I’m not them so I don’t know) over what was happening with their lives. Depersonalizing your employees to just be that roll filler can be hard if you’re the employee that experiences it.

                I’m also not saying you’re a bad manager…I don’t always let my high school kids take part in decision making and sometimes I make decisions and keep them out of the loop until the last minute but I also have to recognize that my decisions can help or hinder their success. I’ve worked in organizations in corporate America and the biggest fault I found with my managers was when they would not get that their decisions had a direct impact on us.

                You also commented on the hours–I left corporate America and part of it was I didn’t want to work 60-70 hours a week. In your OP you stated that you on average work that, it works for you, maybe not for the newbie. I also look at my career and the jobs that fall within that career as a part of my life and not my life, it is my way of staying sane–but that’s also JMO.

                Reply
          2. Ask a Manager Post author

            Wow — very interesting! It sounds like it might be another demonstration of “where there’s smoke, there’s fire” … i.e., when someone is setting off alarm bells for you early on, it’s often for a reason! Thanks for this update!

            Reply
      2. Lydia

        I suspect the low comment ones are those which have been answered so perfectly that there is nothing more to add ;)

        Reply
  11. Mints

    I’ve asked a few boring questions that nobody will remember (how to answer the phone; wording for how to convey bilingualism). I’d like to thank Alison and commenters for sort of giving me a sense of how offices should be. The questions are things I’d ask my mom or something, but she’s not American so we’re both usually at a loss for office conventions. This is not an update (I succumbed to retail for now), just a thanks!

    Reply
    1. Anon

      Accurately describing bilingualism was of interest to me. It’s a conundrum because to some people it means m0ther-tongue or almost in both languages, while to someone who speaks only English, any moderately functional level in another language might be considered bilingualism!

      Reply
      1. Laura L

        OMG Yes!

        I wonder if this is an American thing or if English speakers from other countries do this as well? I know Americans are notorious for not wanting to learn other languages.

        Reply
        1. Anonymous

          It’s not that I don’t want to learn another language, I just have no need/drive/use to. I’ve been in Spanish class from 6-12th grade and 2 semesters in college. I can’t remember anything past basic spanish…kind of. I just NEVER use spanish. I don’t know a lot of people who speak spanish…when they could just use english. My job doesn’t require me to speak spanish. I can’t afford to travel to a spanish speaking country. It frustrates me to try to read a book in spanish where i spend most of the time looking up every word. :(

          Reply
          1. Laura L

            Americans as a whole, I meant, not you, specifically. :-)
            Also, I’m an American who only speaks one language, so I get it.

            But, yes, in many places in the U.S. you don’t need to learn another language to communicate with anyone, whereas, in Europe, all the countries are so close together that learning multiple languages is useful.

            I wonder if it’s similar in Australia and Canada? Although, I guess Canadians in Quebec learn French.

            And I wonder how it is in the UK, since they are closer to other countries with different languages.

            Reply
            1. Zahra

              Canadians in Quebec learn English, mostly. The few anglophones do learn French, though. Usually, employers will note if you need to be fluent in both languages (written and/or spoken) and people will often ask you to rate your ability on a 5-point scale (1 being minimal skill and 5 being fully fluent).

              I don’t know how it works for Canadians outside Quebec, but I do know that a lot of jobs in the federal government require some level of skill in the minority language (English if in Quebec or a French-speaking county, French elsewhere) on top of being fully fluent in the dominant language. There’s even talk of making it mandatory for the top named federal officials (Supreme Court justice, attorney general, etc.) to be fluent enough in both language to understand them and be understood, even if it’s not perfect.

              Forgive me if anything isn’t quite clear, English is my second language and though I consider myself bilingual, some words will sometimes elude me. Specialized language (language restricted to a particular domain, such as insurance, IT, law,etc.) is the downfall of many pluri-lingual speakers, including myself.

              Reply
            2. Anonymous

              Quebec is 80% francophone, so if they’re learning any ‘foreign’ language, it’s English. :) It’s the rest of English-speaking Canada that learns French.

              Reply
                1. KarenT

                  It is mandatory for English speaking Canadians to take French in school from grades 4-10. (It’s part of each province’s curriculum). It leaves you with basic French skills, mostly coversational. Of course, Many forget everything they learned as soon as they finish, and many continue on with it throughout high school and university.

            3. jesicka309

              Most people in Australia stop learning another language in their teens.
              In primary school, the compulsory language was Indonesian (!) as they are our nearest neighbour. The only good use I can think for it is for when you go to Bali on holidays, and even then, almost everyone speaks English!
              In high school, the options are more varied. I did Indonesian through to year 12..thirteen years of the damn language, and I can barely write a sentence now.
              Other students learn French, German or Italian (all useless unless you move to those countries). The useful languages of Chinese and Japanese are taught, but VERY few go on past year 8, due to the high difficulty involved in those languages with writing the characters and so on. Most people who continue are of Chinese/Japanese descent anyway.
              So yes, learning another language is a bit of a crock in my country. :)

              Reply
              1. The IT Manager

                I did Indonesian through to year 12..thirteen years of the damn language, and I can barely write a sentence now.

                Wow! I don’t feel so bad now. Three years of French in high school and 2 years living in the Francophone part of Belgium and I can’t speak French. In my defense the working language for my two years in Belgium was English so I would have only needed to use French in evenings and and on weekends if I was out and about.

                Reply
                1. Not usually Anon

                  I’m in the same oat, without the awesome living in Belgium part). Years of French but my skills about zero.

                  French is such a beautiful language but with the exception of a summer abroad in high school I’ve never had occasion to use it.

                  If I knew then I’d end up in manufacturing I’d have definitely learned Spanish. That I would use every day.

            4. Twentymilehike

              I just had to comment on the “no need to know another language in America” thing … I found it amusing that multiple people had that perspective while I live within miles of neighborhoods where no one speaks English. Not even the signs in store windows are in English! It can be really frustrating, as all it’s lead to is segregation of communities rather than integration immigrant cultures. I hear NY is a better place for integration, while California has more segregated communities. There a a lot of jobs here that require people to be bilingual English a pnd either Spanish, Vietnamese, or mandarin.

              Reply
              1. Laura L

                Thanks for that. I was going to post about that and use California as an example. But I thought it would make my comment too long. So I qualified it by saying “in many places in the US.” :-) I know it’s not the case everywhere.

                Reply
                1. twentymilehike

                  Oh for sure! Of all the traveling I’ve done, there isn’t anywhere else like California. They say California is not like the rest of the nation, and I really think that is a correct statement. We get a really strange rap, yet so many people in other countries see CA as a representation of the US as whole. Probably because CA is so prominent in the media.

  12. Kathy

    What about the blogger who broke her foot? Where is she now?

    Hope you’re still improving and able to enjoy the season.

    Reply
  13. anon

    I wrote in June about having a coworker who added everyone in the office on Facebook and I didn’t want to accept her request.

    I ended up just ignoring the request as recommended since she “probably would never say anything about it”. This worked for a few months until Facebook got brought up in the office. She said something to me about not accepting her request and I used the “oh no, I had no idea, don’t worry I don’t use Facebook alot anyway” excuse and the “it’s nothing personal, it’s just ingrained in me to keep personal and work separate”. Neither of those worked. She begged and begged me to open Facebook so she could prove she sent a request. I finally gave in. She literally walked over to my computer, took the mouse, and accepted her own friend request.

    Hindsight – fake a stomach bug as soon as any kind of social media awkwardness comes up at work.

    Reply
      1. Laura L

        Seconded. She sounds like a person who has no sense of boundaries.

        You can also choose to reject a request (rather than ignoring it and leaving it in your requests inbox) and Facebook will ask if you know the person in real life. If you say no, it will automatically block them from trying to friend you again.

        Although, I’m sure she’ll realize what you’re doing and make a stink about it, so I’m not sure that’s the best idea.

        Reply
      2. Anonymous

        If she does notice I’d suggest saying, pleasantly, “I’m making a New Year’s resolution to spend less time on Facebook, so I’ve pruned down my friends list.” (It’s probably a safe bet. I’m sure that “Spend less time on Facebook” is now right up there with “Lose 10 pounds.”) Then if she fusses, “I appreciate you feel that way, however I’ve made this New year’s Resolution, and I really want to keep my friends list short.” Repeat as necessary, refusing to be drawn into discussing or defending your decision, blamed for her hurt feelings, having to reassure her you really do like her, etc . . . the broken record assertiveness technique. And check your settings for “friends of friends” visibility, if she has collected everyone else in the office.

        Reply
    1. Anon

      I’d have no compunction in saying that I prefer not to add work colleagues on facebook, and refusing her request.

      Another option if this is too awkward is to add her but put her in a contact list that has very restricted privacy settings. So maybe she can see your holiday photos but nothing else, for example.

      Reply
      1. twentymilehike

        Oh yes … I do this! I post everything on “friends only, except restricted” and keep “those people” on my restricted list. I post some random “public” things periodically to keep them appeased LOL

        Reply
        1. Yuu

          I agree – put her on your restricted list. She’ll still be friended but won’t be able to see anything. (you can preview what she can see).

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    2. Anonymous

      It was the summer before freshman year in college for me when facebook was “invented” so I added everyone I knew from high school. Several years later (after graduating from college) I defriended a lot of people I had never seen or heard from again. 2 summers ago (this is like 3 years after the facebook purging) I run into a high school classmate at a wedding and he says “OH I GUESS YOU DELETED ME FROM YOUR FACEBOOK SINCE I CANT TAG YOU IN THIS POST!” Awkward….

      Reply
      1. Laura L

        Ha! I’m glad I was already in my 3rd year of college when Facebook was founded. Very few people that I had no desire to be in contact with tried to friend me. And those that did have long since been deleted.

        Reply
    3. Ivy

      I feel like I might have said this when you wrote in last time, but seriously just increase you privacy settings with her. That way she won’t get updates from you, and she’ll only see the information you want her to. This would support your claim that you’re not on fb much (or just say you deleted a lot of info if she’s already seen your full profile). This is an alternative to unfriending her and hoping she doesn’t notice.

      Reply
  14. Question asker

    I want another update from that teacher who’s friend was throwing a party for her old coworkers……I think alot of ppl thought it was a troll thread based on the OP’s responses.

    Reply
  15. LMW

    I’ve actually asked a few questions as follow alongs to comments or in the open thread, and Alison’s answered a few for me privately (I think they were whether I should use my supportive boss as a reference as I looked for a new job, responding to a low offer, asking about uniforms in an interview…). I ended up not using my boss as a reference because I didn’t want to put her in an awkward situation, turning down the low offer because they wouldn’t negotiate at all…and landing a wonderful new job that was exactly what I wanted with a HUGE raise.

    Reply
  16. LMW

    Sorry! That cut off before I gotnto the most important part: the huge thank you to everyone who chimed in with advice, and especially Alison. This was a big life changing job change, and the advice from this blog helped me get here. It took a really long time to happen, but it was so worth holding out for the right opportunity instead of just the next job.

    Reply
  17. A teacher

    I just want to say thanks for having such an awesome blog and great commentors. I teach high school/junior college vocational education and use your blog in my class to facilitate discussion. I’ve also recommended it to other career/voc ed teachers! The scenarios and talking points are invaluable in a classroom that doesn’t have text books and where I want to apply real-life information.

    Reply
    1. twentymilehike

      I teach high school/junior college vocational education and use your blog in my class to facilitate discussion. I’ve also recommended it to other career/voc ed teachers!

      That is So Awesome.
      I have witnessed first hand the mis-information going around in colleges regarding job searching and career advice that comes from people with very little real life experience. When you are a young person, you really don’t know what it is to be professional or handle things in a professional manner. I bet reading this blog is a great way to prepare them.

      Reply
  18. Sara

    Several of my questions were published including: not wanting to get a minimum wage job, and my email exchanges with Alison that detailed my frustration with an interview process. I also had a few answered in teh short-answers, not to mention the millions of emails between us that have really helped me see things in a different light.

    Min wage: I did open up my job search to retailers but wasn’t called back for anything. I also went to a few places in the neighborhood that had “help wanted” signs…I worked for 3 weeks as a cashier/pharmacy tech for free with the assurance that I’d get hired–only to be told on my “start” date that their regular person returned and they don’t need me anymore. I had had lots of misgivings but because I was desperate, I took it and just hoped for the best.

    Literally, the next day, a friend told me that a contact of his needed help in the office. I started working right away–there was no formal interview, nothing. That job was ok. Pay wasn’t much more than minimum wage, and the hours were very unpredictable, so flexibility was required, which I had. I put in as many hours as I could. I was able to save a little bit of money, so while I’m not in the best position, I’m still in a much better position than when I first wrote in. Hiring for the tax season has started so I am looking for those positions. Unfortunately, I did not get admission into the college of my choice so my plans for school are deferred yet another year…I’m still trying to figure out what to do with that. I still have the desire to go back to school.

    With my first question, I had been interviewing for an organization I temped with and before the third interview, I was told I was not getting the job. the blog post helped me realize that everything that happened was very very normal. I got over it of course–and eventually I realized that I was better off–after more interactions with others from the org I realized there was so much unprofessional behavior going on. for a long time I had thought that I was the worst employee ever, when that simply wasn’t the case.

    Basically ever since I started reading this blog in July and communicating with Alison, it’s helped me gain a better understanding of hiring and how it works. There were some things that I had already known, but what really has changed is the emotional factor–I’ve learned to not let rejections get to me as much…There have been some truths that were hard to swallow but still valuable nonetheless. I really wish one day I can give a real amazing update!

    Reply
    1. Yuu

      Some unasked for advice: Regarding college, you might want to try enrolling/applying for a state school, and then apply to transfer into your dream school. If you can get stellar grades/transcript, you might find it easier. Of course, work experience might help you decide where you want your life to head, so it can be a great way to give yourself direction in a way that a lot of college kids don’t do for themselves. (I was one of them!) Good luck!

      Reply
  19. bingo dauber

    I’d like an update from the poster who: played off job offers from employer A (current) and employer B, accepted B, took a counter-offer from A, emailed their resignation to B the day before they were supposed to start, realized A wasn’t working out, and wanted to contact B again.

    Reply
  20. Chocolate Teapot

    I think there was a batch of updates earlier during the year wasn’t there? I seem to recall the saga of the Bodybuilder and the Nosy Nutritionist.

    Reply
  21. Tara B.

    This was a commenter in another thread and the whole situation unfolded in the comments, but I SO wanted an update on her. This was a call-center supervisor with contractors reporting to her. One of the employees was lazy and uncooperative and got downright belligerent when talked to about her behavior stated something like “snitches get stitches,” definitely a threat of some kind. The commenter wanted her gone asap but either her employer or the contracting company said she needed 3 write-ups before she could get rid of this woman. I’m curious as to how that one turned out.

    Reply
  22. ReaderUK

    I don’t have a specific update to request – I would love to see updates for so many of the questions this year!

    But I did want to say thank you to Alison for such a good blog. I read the whole archive when I found it and absorb everything I can about how be a good manager! Even though I’m in the UK so the rules are different, your advice is so clear and sensible it’s got to be good :)

    Reply
  23. Anon

    I’m the one who asked if she should wear her ring to interviews.

    I haven’t found a permanent job yet, but I’ve had good luck with a couple of recent interviews and with using the strategies outlined on this blog. I can keep my temp gig as long as I need to (long term assignment where they’d hire me if they had the budget) and I’ve been casting my net out. People in my professional network have been giving me a ton of help and I’m finding opportunities. So, more of a “not out of the woods yet, but I’m closer,” update.

    Reply
  24. Lily

    On the one hand, I hope you don’t remember me, because I fear I made such a strong impression as a bad manager in the comments section of a post, but on the other hand, I would like to thank you for your advice!

    I was able to set limits recently. The prerequisite was clear communication about what paperwork I needed by when if someone wanted to do X, followed by a clear reminder, followed by a gentle “no” for the ideas I hadn’t previously agreed to, because it is too late in the game to change our minds. I even informed the higher ups in advance and got their approval about what limits I would set on anyone who might try to bill the company for what they decided to do rather than what I asked them to do.

    It is easy for people to claim misunderstandings when communication is verbal. The time investment of writing down the details was worth the accountability I am now able to demand.

    Reply
  25. Worker Bee

    I haven’t read all the comments, so if I dupliacte it, I apologize. But I’d really like an update on this one: “Can I get my wife’s ex-boyfriend’s company to sent me the emails they sent each other?

    Reply
  26. Not an Impostor

    I wrote to ask about impostor syndrome a few months ago, and I have just passed my probation with flying colours! The job is much busier and the organisation more hectic than I’d thought it would be, but it’s still enjoyable, with never a dull moment.

    Thanks to Alison and to the letter writers and commenters over the year – this forum is a fantastic resource.

    Reply

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