it’s your Friday good news

It’s your Friday good news!

1.  “I had been alternating between being miserable and being indifferent to my job for several years. I knew I wasn’t happy but I just felt stuck and I didn’t think I was capable of finding something better. I also didn’t really know what I wanted. That feeling worsened the longer I was there.

A couple of months ago my misery came to a head and I decided I had to do…something. I started applying all over the place, not so much because I wanted all those jobs but because I was desperate for some sign of change.

Last month I saw a LinkedIn posting from someone I had done an informational interview with a few years back (yes I’ve been looking for a while), saying she was looking to fill a role on her team. I reached out and got an interview. I knew that my interview skills were weak because I’ve had several interviews in the past that haven’t resulted in offers. However I really wanted to get this job and realized my old approach was not working, so I went over AAM material and took the advice to start filming myself on video practicing my prepared answers.

Watching myself was excruciating at first! But the practice really gave me confidence and Alison’s specific advice and sample questions really improved how I came off. I definitely pulled out the “what makes someone in this role great” question in an interview with a VP.

Well this Friday I found out….I GOT THE JOB!! The salary will be a 50% (!!) raise over what I’m currently making, which is just completely mind blowing to me. Just a couple months ago I was entertaining calls from recruiters for crappy contract jobs just because I was so unhappy where I’m at, so I’m very grateful for the advice at AAM.

I definitely learned that 1) you don’t have to be a ‘natural’ at interviewing to succeed as long as you put in the time to prepare and practice, 2) even though practicing interviews seems very weird at first, it ABSOLUTELY pays off, and 3) building a professional network is so important. If I didn’t know the hiring manager I never would have guessed that this job even existed and I wouldn’t have tried to apply. This job was listed in another city but I asked if they were open to remote workers and they were. I will be the first remote worker on their team.

I’ve found the Friday Good News very inspiring especially when I was depressed about my own situation, so I want to tell others that if you take effective advice from people like Alison you can change your course. Best of luck to everyone out there!”

2.  “My son recently graduated with his AA degree; he has been applying for jobs, but not getting any interviews. After several months, I offered to review his resume and provide suggestions; he accepted. Using advice from here, I suggested several updates, including things to remove and others to add. His first application with the updated resume was submitted on Tuesday; he received an email response Thursday asking if he would like to schedule an interview. They called Friday to set up a time for early the following week. Over the weekend, I shared the magic question. Well, two days after the interview (which he thought went very well) they called and are starting the final phase of the application process (reserved for their preferred candidate).

Update: He was accepted into the position, though his start date was adjusted to coincide with a second hire they were making. While their other hire has several years of experience, my son had none and is a brand new rookie. He started two days ago, 3 1/2 months after putting in his application (this seems to be a normal time frame from others I know in the field).”

3.  “This is a short one, but I wanted to share it because it’s a wonderful example of great management. I work for a professional association that has made the transition to providing services during the pandemic successfully, and we are doing fine financially. We had one team member retire a few months ago and recently a junior team member gave notice as well. This is very unusual for us — for 6 years we had no turnover whatsoever.

Our managing director explained that we are working on filling both positions as soon as possible, but due to the tight job market, it may take a while (the more senior role is pretty niche). He divided the work up so that we can mostly get things done, took on additional duties himself, and said that he knows certain things will need to take longer or be pushed aside during this period. He just asked that if we can’t do something because of the work-load, we communicate with him about it. Then today (a mere 10 days after our junior team member gave notice) he told us that we would all be getting an additional substantial salary bump during the transition period to recognize the additional work we are all contributing.

If my boss were a regular boss, and not a superboss, I’d likely be seeking to leverage the hot job market. But because he does things like this, I am staying. And that, people, is how you ensure employee loyalty!”

{ 27 comments… read them below }

  1. Bookworm*

    Thank you to all the LWs for writing in! It’s always nice to end another long week with some happy news! :)

    1. Sariel*

      I agree! Especially when it’s been a really long week (like on Wednesday, it felt like it should be Friday already). Thank you for sharing your success stories!

      1. TinaTurner*

        What we often don’t realize is how much our bad job is demoralizing us, depressing us, sapping our energy and creativity. Applying for a job can jolt us out of our rut, and we might even get the job! And I actually had asked for a 30-hr. week because I knew I wasn’t going to want to be there 40! But I still didn’t see how bad it would be.

        I ended up going to a job counselor after I left that soul-sucking job and it was so close to there I could have been dropping in all the time while still working! But I wasn’t aware of it. Just getting outside my own head and the bad energy I was in would have been really helpful.

    2. SofiaDeo*

      Yes, thank you so very much! Really needed some happy news after this particularly nasty week I’ve had.

  2. Gracely*

    LW3, I am so happy for you, and happy to hear not all bosses think the way the head of my institution does. (When asked about salary bumps to deal with staff workload/retention because we’ve been bleeding staff, we got “everyone always thinks they are the only ones dealing with an issue, when in fact every employer in the country is dealing with the effects of the Great Resignation. Some offices used to have 11 people, and now they have 6, but they might discover that they never needed 11 people in the first place.”)

    Having an employer who appreciates the extra work you do is so, so important.

    1. OrigCassandra*

      Wow. I cannot imagine an answer more finely calibrated to drive more people out of that organization. Heckuva job, Institution Head.

      1. Anonymous4*

        Could be that the boss is going to discover that they really never needed 6 people in the first place, either. Or 5. Or 4.

        “Work harder AND smarter! Wait — where are you going?”

        1. Elenna*

          Exactly what I was thinking! “Oh, well, in that case I guess you really only needed 5 people. Bye.”

        2. The_artist_formerly_known_as_Anon-2*

          Yes, I was yelled at once for cutting corners and getting workable solutions into our customers’ hands — we documented everything properly but instead of using the quirky support system – got the customers the solutions, and THEN went in and logged what we had done.

          Our ratings were high (mine, other co-worker on team). And our customers loved us. BUT … but…

          I guess we were making too many others look bad by our good work. So for a joke I hung a “Work Harder, Not Smarter” sign in my cube. They got the hint. Another “Dinner Table Story”.

        3. The_artist_formerly_known_as_Anon-2*

          My point is – if others had worked as we did and not followed the cludgey (sp?) procedures, there wouldn’t be a need for as many tech consultants. But it was all about “The Empire”.

  3. Momma Bear*

    Great letters all the way around! Nice start to the weekend.

    We have all heard that people quit bosses and #3 shows that people are willing to work hard when they are appreciated.

  4. Sara without an H*

    OP#2 — we’ve had so many examples at AAM of parents giving their children really horrible job search advice, it’s great to hear from a reader who’s been able to use this site to actually help their kid. Congratulations!

  5. Diatryma*

    #3: your boss is amazing in a way I didn’t think employers were these days. Please let them know that the internet admires them and want to use them as an example.

    1. Palliser*

      I’m OP3 and I have seriously considered showing him this posting and thread. Honestly, he’s just the best. We had someone apply for the more senior open position who used to be my old boss. Superhero boss scheduled time with me to ask how I would feel about working with this person again, and if I anticipated any weirdness because of the new dynamic (oldboss would be my peer). Every review I spend the last 5 minutes telling him how much I appreciate his management style.

      1. Momma Bear*

        Can we clone him?

        Does your company do anything to give feedback up the food chain? If so, I would try to get that documented. Sometimes if I have a particularly good interaction I will email that person’s manager to let them know. If you haven’t told your grandboss that he’s awesome, that might be a good way to do it.

        1. Palliser*

          He’s pretty much the top of the food chain but I do write amazing things about him in my review in hopes the president will read them. I would absolutely be in favor of cloning, though I’m now sure what he and his family would think of that idea ;)

  6. BB8isBBGreat*

    Long-time Reader, First-time Commenter!
    Funny thing, I was actually drafting an email for “Good News Friday” but I just didn’t have time. But then I read LW#1 and their situation was almost identical to my own! I was in the same position of hating my job and being indifferent to everything. (Partly because of COVID, partly because of a lack of job growth, and partly because of undiagnosed depression.) Like them I used AAM to tune up my resume, get good interview advice, and even request time off at the negotiation stage, and get the job. I also will be getting an almost 50% pay increase with my job too!(Honestly it was a little crazy reading the letter, I thought I’d posted it in my sleep or something.)
    I’m so happy that you found a great job that suits you better LW#1! I hope that it fulfills you and gives you great opportunities!

    1. Ozzav*

      I’m also in this situation. Either don’t like my job on bad days or be indifferent to it on good days.
      Unfortunately I’m the owner, and even if I close my store and search for a job I’m living in a dying city, so I’m not sure if I can find something serious; my skillset (smartphone and tablets repairs) can give me an edge, but since it’s what I don’t like about my job I don’t want to use them.
      Sorry for the rant, just feeling stuck.

      1. SofiaDeo*

        Are you interested in training/teaching those skills to others? At least for a short time, unless/until you figure out something else? “A change is as good as a rest” and some sort of break/reprieve from repair repetition might be helpful?

  7. The Million Roses*

    Thanks to all for the good news!

    I’m struck so much by this sentence, which perfectly sums up my situation but in a much better way than I could express: I had been alternating between being miserable and being indifferent to my job for several years.

  8. RAM*

    LW3 – As someone who has “absorbed” 3 different roles in the past year and whenever I ask for extra help am told “we’ll get to that eventually but everyone is understaffed..”, your letter makes me hopeful that there are better companies out there.. don’t leave it!

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