If you've been reading here for any length of time you'll know that since finishing university almost five years ago (holy cow, I feel old!) I've only ever worked contract jobs. My summers were always spent at camp where I worked as the assistant director. My winters were most often spent working a super boring, well paying office job. And my springs and falls were a mix of the two depending on that years budget for both organizations. Towards the end of this summer I knew something needed to change. I was exhausted from bouncing between jobs and totally switching gears every 4-6 months and I needed something more consistent. So I started looking.
More than anything I wanted to stay in camping. I had a degree in camping. My entire existence revolved around camp. As much as I hated the thought of relocating far from family and friends it was a sacrifice I was willing to make. I applied to and interviewed for jobs in almost every province, plus a couple of states. And none of the worked out.
Sometimes I made it to second round interviews, sometimes I sent off an application and never heard a word. To say I was disheartened and discouraged would be a massive understatement. One thing that I kept coming up against again and again was candidates who had prior experience with the organization. So when I saw a posting in early November with a non-profit that I have been interested in for years and that is known for hiring from with in I didn't bother applying. And then I got turned down for a position that I thought I had a really good chance at. And by got turned down I mean that I had an interview that lasted an hour and a half, they seemed really pleased with my answers, discussed setting up a second interview and potential start date. And I never heard from them again.
Reluctantly I quickly changed a few words on my cover letter and resume to make them less campy and sent off my application to the previously mentioned non-profit. Weeks went by and I didn't hear anything. I assumed that they had an extensive pool of internal candidates and/or they couldn't see how my camp experience would translate to the position they were trying to fill.
I reached out to camp and said that I was essentially done with the job search, I would most likely be returning to my role as AD in the spring (or sooner depending on the budget). After much discussion the decision seemed obvious. All of the no's were clearly an indication that I was supposed to spend another summer at camp. The day I was planning to publish a post announcing my decision I got an e-mail from the non-profit offering me an interview.
I accepted and felt confident that I did a good job, but knew that most (or all) of the other interviewees were internal, I wasn't expecting anything to come of it other than give me something to do on a Thursday morning.
I was pleasantly surprised when I was invited for a second interview. This one was entirely scenario based. Again, I was confident in my responses but knew that I probably could have done better with more direct experience within the organization.
And then last week I got a job offer. If you had of told me at the beginning of all this the end result would be a position with an international non-profit for disabilities as human resource coordinator I never would have believed you. I also wouldn't have believed you if you told me that instead of trekking across the country or continent I'd be relocating two hours from home.
My first day is Thursday and I'm still not entirely sure what I'm getting myself into, but I'm trusting that this is the way. The next few weeks will be full of change and transition and general chaos so stay tuned for many tales of adventure.