Help wanted?


No sense beating around the bush this morning — I’m unemployed for the first time in over 25 years; involuntarilly separated from my employer after over eleven years of very-enjoyable service.

If you are expecting any sort of rant about this — fagettaboudit; this is my take on applying for unemployment benefits with the State of Minnesota and seeking employment. Things have changed a lot since my last experience, now instead of going to the Minnesota State Unemployment Office and applying in person, one may (and is encouraged to) apply on-line.

I knew I was in trouble when on the first page I was expected to know my exact date of hire. Month [mm], day [dd] and year [yyyy]. You must put something in each space. It’s been nearly 12 years! I don’t remember the day of the month.  Not an option.

Some people can remember even the most obscure days in their life; the date, day, time of day, what they were wearing, who they were with and how they felt. I may have once had those memory skills; I don’t remember.

I do remember the year: 1999, and the month: May, so I guessed. I’m sure it was a good guess; within 31 days good.

I don’t remember every question I had to answer on the form; I do remember having to go back and make something up — just to fill in the space. Blank spaces are not an option.

They did cover all the methods of the past in seeking and obtaining employment: Want ads, door-knocking and papering the area with resumés — all manner of relatively useless methods — save one: networking. Almost every job I’ve ever had was obtained because I knew someone who knew someone who had a position to fill.

In case you hadn’t noticed — I’m networking right now with this post (that’s a hint).