Well, I didn't get any of the jobs I interviewed for over the last couple of weeks. But hey, at least I'm getting interviews ... it's just so frustrating that none of them are going anywhere. So after a lot of thought, I've decided to do a few things:
One: Start registering with temp agencies. I've temped before, and I liked it; there were always new people to meet and new things to learn (and add to my resume). I'm seeing an awful lot of employment ads these days for temp jobs that "could become permanent", and I have a suspicion that most of those employers are just trying out one temp after another until they find someone they like enough to keep. And I want that someone to be me!
Two: Get some coaching. There are a few placement agencies that specialize in coaching and assisting older workers - and I certainly qualify! - and although I don't like to admit it, it's very possible that my "interview skills" or lack thereof are what's holding me back.
Three: Put quite a bit more work into my appearance. I do keep up with colouring my hair / touching up my roots on a regular basis, but I think it's time to get the Big Guy to cut it again. (He does a good job, and it keeps him from complaining about how much got cut off ...) It's also time to get my eyebrows done - and then keep them up - and try to grow some better fingernails and keep them in shape. I do prefer to keep them very short, but that (and house & yard work) makes my hands look, well, less than professional.
Four: Make an investment in my working wardrobe. There's nothing wrong with my office clothes per se; I've had them a long time but always tried to take good care of them and keep them looking nice. But I've been putting off getting new underthings for too long, and I think it's time to invest in at least one real suit instead of matching up things that almost look like one. Black slacks and a black blazer are fine for ordinary work days, but the fabrics are visibly different; and my other "suit" is a pair of charcoal slacks with a navy pinstripe matched up with a navy blazer. Nice, but again, not really professional. With a real suit, I can wear any nice shell or blouse, and dress it up or down with the right accessories.
So here's my plan for the rest of the week:
Tonight - clean up and organize my teeny-tiny workroom so I'll have room to work on the weekend's projects. This is not going to be easy, and I see myself climbing up and down the attic ladder many more times than I'd like ... I'll try to think of it as good exercise. If I get brave enough (and figure out how) I'll post before-and-after pics on Sunday.
Tomorrow (Thursday): Go over the budget and figure out exactly how much I have to spend. Then shop; underthings first, then put on new ones, a nice blouse, and my office shoes before shopping for a suit (or two, if they're on sale and I can afford two). It's nice that Mom lives right by the mall; I can shop for undies, go and have coffee with her, and change before the suit-shopping ordeal. I'm glad I bought new office shoes just before the layoff!
Friday - Register with as many temp agencies as possible, and get recommendations from them regarding interview coaching and so on.
Saturday - Touch up the roots, get Big Guy to cut my hair, get my eyebrows done, and start working on tidying up my nails. Oh, and find my old gardening gloves and start wearing them religiously again!
Sunday - Go through my wardrobe ruthlessly, and donate everything that doesn't fit properly, is visibly outdated or worn, or just doesn't suit me. Make an inventory of what I have left, make a list of what else I'd like to have, and go through my stash of patterns, fabric and yarn to determine what I can make without spending any more money.
And then, of course, come back here to report on how everything went!