Thinking Outside the Box: Rejection – It’s Not Just for Writers…

This has been a rough two weeks. First, I was dealing with the deafening sound of crickets in response to the numerous resumes/applications I have sent out over the past six months. Then, this week, my in-box and mail-box have been filled with “…while your credentials are impressive, you have not been selected…” responses. At least the crickets have been silenced.


As some readers know, I was displaced from my job in September as a result of a corporate restructuring and massive head-count reduction at the Fortune 100 company where I worked. I know I am in good company. The latest report on the unemployment numbers indicates that there are 13.2 million people out of work in the US. (United States Department of Labor, (2009, April 3). The unemployment situation: March 2009. Bureau of Labor Statistics News. Retrieved April 3, 2009, from:


What can a person do to get out of the mountainous pile of resumes received for each opening and in front of a hiring manager? Or, better yet, what can one do to get an interview?


All the experts will tell you that the trick to landing a job, especially in this type of job market, is using your network to get in the door at your targeted companies. In addition to networking like crazy, I have decided to get creative.


One of the networking groups I belong to sent out a query on behalf of a reporter for personal stories about coping with unemployment. I contacted the reporter and gave an interview, which may be published later this month. I have also registered with a radio station in my home town that is featuring an unemployed listener each week and helping that person promote themselves to prospective employers on the air and on the station’s website.


Sort of unusual tactics, and even more unusual when you factor in my introverted nature; this is way outside of my “comfort zone” under any circumstances. My hope is that a prospective employer will see that I am able to “think outside the box” and willing to take a risk. My hope is that a prospective employer will recognize these strengths that can be hard to demonstrate on a resume. My hope is that a prospective employer will realize that they need someone like me in their organization.


Will it work? We shall see, but that is the beauty of the successful creative thinking – you never know if it will work until you try.



Mairead Walpole is the pen name for a somewhat introverted project manager who has 20+ years of business and technical writing under her belt. In her spare time, Mairead reviews books for Crystal Reviews ( and writes paranormal romance. Her first novel, “A Love Out of Time” is available through Second Wind Publishing ( or


Filed under life, Mairead Wapole, marketing

3 responses to “Thinking Outside the Box: Rejection – It’s Not Just for Writers…

  1. You’re right, in bad economic times a job search does become very much like trying to market a book to publishers and agents. When the competition gets tough, it’s difficult to find ways to make your product/qualifications stand out from all the others. But, like landing a book contract, you never know when some little connection will lead to a job opportunity. During my career, which spanned the “merger mania” era of job insecurity, I was hired by over a dozen companies. Very few of those were the result of mailing a resume. Most offers came from knowing someone or being in the right place at the right time. I think your networking approach is a wise choice.
    Best of Luck

  2. Networking is vital in anything where you want people to pay attention to your product–be it a book, a physical product, or you and your skills being the product. Crickets is a horrible sound to hear when you’re wanting the attention of those ‘buyers’. You find yourself thiking, I DID send out those resumes, didn’t I?

    Getting creative is the only way to go and it will take a lot out of you. The thing is, you never know who will bite. Sometimes it’s word of mouth, oh did you see this? It’s from some woman in VA. Really? hmmm, interesting. So the orginal target audience may not be the one you’ll get what you want from, and sometimes, the offers are not quite in the areas you envisioned. Thinking outside the box sometimes get you jobs that are outside the box too.

    Good thing is, you aren’t sitting in your corner going, oh woe is me, you’re making waves and who knows which connection that wave will brush against and give results.

    Wishing you success!

  3. Mairead

    Norm & Sia,
    Thanks for your words of encouragement. This is a tough time to be looking for work and keeping an up-beat perspective can be trying.

    I did get two calls today from two different consulting companies about the same job – one is going to be putting me forth for the job. Hopefully, I will hear something positive in the next few days.

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