{Confessions of a PRetty Social Girl} Hi, My name is Gen-Y, will you hire me?

Image by Sasha H. Muradali. All Rights Reserved 2009.

Have you ever read Paulo Coelho’s The Alchemist?

It’s a really interesting story about a shepherd boy who goes in search of his personal legend and lately I’ve been thinking about it a lot. I’m a Gen-Y you see, who is pretty much jobless and because of the recession it seems like I’m stuck in an endless spiral of confusion and complex whirlwinds I never imagined facing back in December 2008 when I was prepping to gradute.

I grew up with everyone telling me, ‘go to college, get a degree, get two in fact, work hard…you’ll land the job’ — well, a recession changes that now doesn’t it?

Do you ever sit down and wonder, what am I meant to do? Is this it? Will this ever be it? What is ‘it?’

I’m currently looking for a job in Public Relations with no real such luck or prospects. And while, I’ve had some small offers here and there, I do not want to ‘jump straight from the frying pan, into the fire,’ as they say. So I’ve held out.

After reading “Gen-Y: America’s Most Powerful Generation,” I couldn’t be more comfortable with my decisions. Though, when I read the bit about an average of $27,000 in debt per college student, I wondered if Russell was talking about the same America I live in. For I know for a fact, none of my friends have $27,000 in debt from student loans. In fact, for many of us, it’s minimally three times that number.

So yes, that means those educated Gen-Yers, that I call my friends, who are just like me, are sitting on a minimum of $81,000 in debt from university etc.

On top of that, we’re competing with people twice our age for jobs that are supposed to be ours. That’s right, according to the Huffington Post and Careerealism, our jobs, those entry-level, those 0-5 years experience positions are being snatched out from underneath us by the same generations that berate us. By berate, I mean, I’ve read articles where Boomers are anti-Gen-Y hiring at the moment, because some feel, and feel the need to put it out there, that we are lazy, “all about me” workers.

I wonder if there is some fact to the agreement by the Boomers, Gen-X and the Silent to say that we, the Millennial, are “all about the me.”

Could it be because there is no one to look out for us other than ourselves?

When social security has been tapped out, Medicare is gone and we are left with nothing but the craziest debt in American history, and a world coming out of recession, who will be there to pick up the pieces, but us.

There is no choice, just chance, a little faith and some hard work.

My dad has always told me, “you know what you have, but never know what you will get.”

Therefore, I throw caution to the wind. Whether this is right or wrong, I do not know. But with massacring student loans hanging over my head, a recession boiling in the midst of my graduation (BS Public Relations Spring ’07, MA International Administration Fall ’08) – creativity squashes risk, right?

So I’ve decided to blog about my journey: from the halls of education to the shores of the boardroom – Confessions of a PRetty Social Girl…on a job hunt.

Millennial by FJ Gaylor via Flickr

You would think I am bitter or frustrated. A little agitated, yes. But angry? No.

Though, I have always said, I’m sure one day I shall meet someone who works in Human Resources for some company in a bar, and they’ll say to me, “Hey I know you! I read your resume!”

As a millennial, I’ve often read and heard about what a selfish, all-about-me generation we are. And while, I disagree with that to a large extent, I reflect upon myself and see some truth in those assumptions.

The distinctive difference, however, is that I care about myself and that is the selfishness I am guilty of. I care about myself enough to believe that if I believe, if I work hard and if I try my best, I will succeed; and it will be mutually beneficial to myself as well as they to choose to hire me.

Hire me to a position I am not only qualified for, but will pay me decently and handsomely for my work. A position that will allow me to meet people, network and continue doing my passion, what I love to do: public relations.

It sounds simple enough, is rather difficult to do and takes the utmost amount of patience and persistence. But isn’t that the same as trying to find your personal legend? Can I have one giant overall personal legend and a few small mini-ones along the way?

While, not getting all mystical and One Ring of Power here, I ask, is it possible?
Will it be possible?
How long will it take?
Will you hire me?

(*Thanks to Nicole Van Scoten for allowing me her ‘PRetty Social.’)

–

Sasha Muradali runs the ‘Little Pink Book’ . She holds a B.S. in Public Relations from the University of Florida (’07) and an M.A. in International Administration from the University of Miami(’08). She loves Twitter and all things social media, so you should find her @SashaHalima.

Copyright © 2009 Sasha H. Muradali. All Rights Reserved

Comments

  1. I hear you. In this exact moment in time I am in your shoes. Frustration is taking over me and I just feel like throwing in the towel.

    Your post has shown me that “I'm not the only one.”

    Thanks!

  2. tomokeefe1 says

    Sasha,

    I'm looking forward to reading about your journey towards jobdom. I'll likely be in your shoes about a year from now! It's a tough time for all, but you seem equal to the task and you'll be successful soon enough.

    Thanks and please keep up the great work on the Little Pink Book.

    -Tom
    @TomOKeefe1

  3. Great post. We're all feeling the pain. Why not blog for a living?

  4. This is a great idea, Sasha! And an inspiration as well! I know a LOT of people that can relate to this and would be willing to learn whatever they can from your experiences! This is a great example of why Gen-Yers are so amazing. We take what little we have to work with and turn it into something innovative and spectacular. We won't just sit idly by while older generations drown us deeper into this recession by snatching up our entry level positions. We worked hard for our degree(s), dangit! And we deserve a great job! Using your tools and talents to find new approaches to success is what this generation is all about, and having to do so in these hard times will make us better, more creative professionals in the long run. So, thank you, recession, for challenging our generation and forcing us to really use our brains to obtain our goals. We'll be better off for it in the end! Good luck with your PR job hunt! I'm excited to hear about the journey!

  5. Thank you Jess!

    That is a very positive POV. I would have never thought of saying, “thank
    you recession for the challenge.” But I do believe you are right.

    Well, in time we will see!

    If you have any ideas for future installments, please let me know 🙂

  6. marydemingbarber says

    Sasha,
    I recall so well the challenges I faced finding that first job and wondering why no one appreciated what I know.

    That was 30+ years ago. However, if you're not already doing so, I would suggest volunteering your time/skills to a local nonprofit in need of your PR skills. You can show them, your board and potential employers your skills and commitment. In addition, get involved in PRSA so you can network with everyone in the area and get your name/reputation out there.

    You're probably already doing most of what I've suggested but since others are reading your blog too I figure it's worth sharing.

    I think it's really important to realize we were all where you are at one point in our careers. While I didn't deal with the recession, it wasn't easy finding that first job. And, we've worked really really hard to get where we are too.

    Good luck to you. I'm sure something will come your way soon.

  7. J.T. O'Donnell says

    Graduating in the last recession (90's), I can relate. It really is frustrating to sit there ready to go and have no place to apply your energy and excitement.

    One idea that is coming in to play with Gen Y these days is commission-based work. You find a local company in your area who could use your services and pitch (a.k.a. volunteer) to do one project for free as a way for you to gain experience and put it on your resume. Then, you tell them at the end, depending on how happy they are, you'll want them to provide you with a recommendation. AND, if they think a small commission would be in order for your efforts, they can make one. It's a way to get a place to try you out. Like an internship, but since you've graduated now, I'd focus on you being a consultant-for-hire who is willing to do a 'free' gig as an intro to your abilities. I know several recent grads who have done this kind of project work and landed jobs out of it.

    Best wishes and I also look forward to reading more about your journey!

    PS – Thanks for mentioning CAREEREALISM in your article – I'm glad you are a fan!

  8. Some great suggestions for recent grads in the comments here.

    Also, If you're not already, you should consider doing some freelance PR work. Offer your skills to smaller businesses who don't have (or have had to lay off) PR people. It could be anything from a single press release to an awareness campaign. Use your Website to display some of your work. I began doing freelance work when I was in between an internship and my current position, and it was a great way to make use of my down time. It gave me more stuff to build my resume/portfolio, and I made a little money too 🙂 Just something to keep in mind.

  9. abschoff says

    I am in the same position as you, an unemployed Gen Y girl looking for a PR position. It's so frustrating to find a job listing that seems perfect for you (number of years of experience required, skills needed, etc) only to find that you have no chance because someone with twice the number of years of experience needed wants that same position. It's hard to compete with that.

    I've recently focused my energy on finding a paid internship with a large PR agency. I've already completed two previous internships, so my friends/family can't understand why I'm looking for another. It really seems like the best opportunity at this time, though. Contrary to popular belief about Gen Y'ers, I am not above being a degree-holding intern.

    Good luck with your job search and keep up the great blog!

    Abby

  10. Solid Work!

  11. Solid Work!

  12. Hallelujah! Thank you for posting this! I came across your site today, and am thankful I found it. Great blog. Thank you.

  13. Hallelujah! Thank you for posting this! I came across your site today, and am thankful I found it. Great blog. Thank you.