Hey. It’s me again. Yet another job applicant. Only I’m not. None of us are.
You see, to you, another application is just that. It’s another résumé you will or will not glance over. Another applicant you may or may not actually consider. A person you will consciously or subconsciously judge based on a name, a font choice, or even your mood.
But to me, this is so much more. In exchange for that paper that you’ll skim, I gave years of my life—my best years, arguably. That, right there, is all I hold to my name. It’s the money I couldn’t spend on a social life or a well balanced meal because I instead opted for an education. It’s the mental exhaustion I endured during my countless internships that I spent fetching coffee or in the mailroom instead of doing the actual work I was there for. It’s the late train ride back home after a long day of classes, work, volunteering, and social activities I was told you’d appreciate. I tried to keep things assorted for you, in case one of those skills spoke to you more than the others. Between the languages I’ve learned, the softwares I’ve mastered, and the interpersonal qualities I’ve acquired, I can’t really remember if I did them for me, or for you. All I know is, I’ve shaped myself into the person that I am now so that I can attract you.
It’s funny, when I take a step back, it almost sounds ridiculous in a way. I read all your posts and company updates and apply to every position that I am qualified and over qualified for. Then, I stalk your personal LinkedIn profile hoping to find a mutual contact that might introduce me to you and start what I fantasize as being a long lasting and fulfilling relationship.
Now, I know what you’re thinking: even if you do give me a chance, the final call as to whether I will or will not get the job is not determined by you. You’re so silly! Don’t you think I know that already? This isn’t my first rodeo! I’ve been around the block so-to-speak. I know the process involves impressing you, then impressing your peers, then impressing your superiors. If this were The Hunger Games, the odds aren’t really in anyone’s favor. That’s the ugly truth, but I’ll still volunteer as tribute.
You may be wondering why I am this desperate in the first place. I mean, at the end of the day, it’s a job I’m trying to secure, not a grand prize trip or something. More or less, it’s a 9 to 5 death sentence that is bound to slowly crush my spirit and rip me of the very little optimism I still hold. To that, I’ll give you a point. You’re right. The system is…well, flawed. You know that. I know that. Everyone knows that. But you see, the clock is ticking and soon enough my first student loan payment will be due. So, despite how it may seem, I don’t have that many options aside from to sip the poison.
I’ve already moved back home and taken on random jobs while I wait to hear back from you. If you’re wondering how I’ve been holding up in the meantime, the truth is, I haven’t been that great. My mind is not in a good place and my anxiety is at an all time high. I mean, put yourself in my shoes. Ever since I can remember, I’ve been doing everything I can so that when we meet, you’ll fall in love with me. But so far, all you’ve done is ignore all the attempts I’ve made to reach you.
Is it me? Is something wrong with me? Is there a piece of the puzzle that I’m missing? A part of the code that I have yet to crack?
It’s the only logical explanation I can find. You asked for years of experience, and despite its illogical timeline, I gave them to you. You asked for a college degree, I offered you two. I flooded you with skills and extracurriculars, and made you a promise to selflessly work and to do all I can to represent your company in the best way possible. I’ve aligned my character with your mission and I’m serving you a platter of professionalism with just the right amount of creativity to top. And yet, I still haven’t impressed you.
All I ask is for a response. It doesn’t have to be an emotionally-drenched love letter. Seriously, you’ve numbed my emotions— a generic automated reply will do. Something along the lines of:
“We’re not interested in pursuing you”
“it’s not us, it’s you”
or even a simple “thanks, but no thanks”
I don’t think it’s a lot to ask for, especially after everything I’ve done for you. My résumé aside, the application you had me work on took all night. Manually inputting all that experience into your portal takes more time than you might think. I mean, is it torture at that point? I already gave you my résumé, why do I need to type it all in again? Is it to remind myself of the everything that I’ve put myself through or some sick “professional” way of sprinkling salt into our job application wounds? Whatever. It’s fine, I guess. I won’t take that part personal. I know you probably have nothing to do with it.
Anyway, I know this long, and I doubt you made it this far. I’ve respected your no-call policy and I’m keeping my distance, but I needed to get this off my chest. Whoever you end up choosing, whether it’s someone you knew before or someone you stumbled upon in the slush, I hope they make you happy. I hope they live up to your expectation. But more importantly, though, I hope you treat them well. Because even though I don’t know them personally, I know they must have fought very hard to impress you. I hope you never take that for granted, and even though you may think it at times, don’t you dare make them feel replaceable.
Good luck with everything. I hope I hear from you soon, but deep down, I know I won’t.