Overqualified and Underappreciated: Part Two

Last week when I dropped off some papers at the town office, I was chatting with the town clerk, and when I told her about my new seasonal job, she said, with a knowing smile, “I know.”

“How do you know?”

“Word gets around fast.”

“No, really, how do you know?”  Certain information may get around town fast, but this surprised me, as I hadn’t talked about it in town yet.

“I work there.”

Ahhh…. So someone saw me interviewing?  Or saw my name on a list and recognized it?  And the gossip spread – she’s applied for a job here?  Was it a neighbor?  Someone related to my old position? There’s quite a network of connections with this company.  I wonder who noticed me

I asked her for more details.  She’s a year-round employee, and she’s been working with the company for 15 years.  She currently does the night shift, from 7 pm to midnight.  I got some inside information about the advantages and disadvantages of the position.  If the worst is dealing with irrational customers, I’m ready.  I have lots of experience calming down irate people and finding solutions – this is a strength I bring to this job.

Unfortunately, it is not to be.  The next day, during a call from my assigned supervisor to confirm my attendance, it turned out that a training schedule conflict I have is a deal breaker.  There are five days of training.  Out of 4 full days of training and one 4-hour session, the 4-hour session falls on the day I am out of state for a memorial service for my father.  (We’ll be spreading his ashes in the sea at that time).  It’s the last scheduled training, and they are inflexible about it.  I tried to problem solve with the supervisor, suggesting this or that arrangement.  She could only repeat that they know what works best and that it has to happen on this schedule.  She’ll let me know if anything changes.

Back at the town office for a meeting today, I reported on the situation.  One listener (who has worked with me) was appalled. “People in retail are stupid” she said.  (She has experience in business.)  She had told her husband that I would probably be running the company within a week, given my skills.  I appreciated her support, as well as information from another quarter about the supervisor.  You have to wonder how much expertise a company loses because of the inflexibility of low level managers, who can’t think outside the box, who follow regulations inflexibly.  On the other hand, they claim they have a system that works, developed from experience, they perhaps have enough people applying who don’t have schedule conflicts, and it’s possible they don’t need (or value) the overqualified ones.

On to other opportunities…


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2 Responses to Overqualified and Underappreciated: Part Two

  1. bethanyk says:

    This has been enlightening to read and see how hard you, one individual tried to find a job and put in so much effort and time and thought just to be either overlooked or like you said under appreciated. So many people don’t even try at all and just give up and yet your perseverance is incredible

    • SpruceKnob says:

      Thank you for all your recent comments and ‘likes’. I have avoided reading and writing blog posts for long periods of time, but I’m trying to reconnect. I have the urge to write and reflect, but I procrastinate at length, even though I feel better after posting. The garden blog acts as an release valve, but this one is what I need to return to.

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