I Failed At My Career. Miserably
So I like to think I’m pretty good at what I do. I mean I won multiple awards during my time at ITEC Employment for getting the most people into work, I was promoted within two weeks at Darwin Skills for my ability to engage young disadvantaged youth into employment, I also received a $20,000 pay rise within my first 3 months on the job and have bulk client testimonials from clients thanking me for helping them to land their dream job. Pretty good, right?
Thing is, it wasn’t always so. To be specific for the first 10 years of my career history, I wondered daily when I was going to get fired because I was such a bloody failure. My first job occurred in high school when I started working at a local bakery. Customers terrified me (I can’t explain it, I was just really shy and scared of speaking to people I didn’t know), I kept mucking up the manual cash register and I always freaked out that I was slicing the bread too chunky. The boss agreed with my own self-assessment and fired me for my “lack of customer service skills” within a month.
I’d like to say my next job flipping burgers at McDonalds went better but the truth is I was too slow and could never get the burgers ready in time for peak hour traffic. I resigned before my three month review because I knew they would never keep someone so slow around. After that it was a stint at the Chemist, this went a bit better but I was always overlooked for the promotions, mostly because although I was a little better at talking to customers, I was still painfully shy.
Eventually I went to work for three years at an abattoir. Yes, you read that right. I spent three years making boxes and packing meat into it. I still wasn’t very fast and was frequently told to “fu*king move faster” but it was the abattoir. I mean no one ever got fired from the abattoir. Hell, someone put a firecracker in someone’s smoke and sent the guy blind for a bit and the union still managed to keep him in his job.
I could go on, it’s a huge list of failures from cooking in a shearing shed to working behind the bar. I once even completed the start of a diesel fitter apprenticeship before I forgot to put the sump plug back in after servicing a major piece of machinery. The thing is I had zero idea of what I was good at. I didn’t think I had any strengths and really thought I was doomed to work jobs I was hopeless at for the rest of my life. It was a total fluke that I found what I was good at.
I had always been able to find work, I was self-taught on how to write a resume and could talk the talk at interview time. In fact, I could usually find a new job within a few hours. The most is ever took for me to find a new job was 4 days and that was in a tough economic climate in a town where you actually had to wait for someone to die before they would hire anyone new.
Anyway, so I was about 25 years old and I found out this employment agency let you use their computers and copiers to print off as many resume copies as you wanted. All you had to do was have a free consult. So I had my consult and they wrote a resume up from scratch for me and I thought “Holy Cow Man! I know more about this than he does”. That was it. I set my sights on an employment consultant job and had one within a few weeks. They actually created a position from scratch for me because they were so impressed by my resume and cover letter (I cold called them).
I was good at it, really good at it. I always exceeded any target they set for me. At one stage when one of the consultants left, they didn’t even bother replacing him. They just gave me a pay rise and handed me his caseload because they knew I could manage both. Now, I’m not writing this to boast. I’m still shy by nature and beating my own drum makes me feel uncomfortable. In fact writing this feels really vulnerable or something.
The reason for this post is to demonstrate to those of you who have been at it for years and still feel they are never going to be good at anything, that it is 100% possible to find a job you are great at. Also, I have a short cut for you. One I wish I had known about years ago because it would have saved me 10 years of trial and error.
It’s called psychometric testing or career testing and it will show you what you are good at right now so you don’t have to work in a freaking abattoir just because they won’t fire you. These tests work because I’ve done them as part of my work and guess what they said was the ideal job for me? Employment Consultant, Human Resource Manager or Writer. How freaking accurate is that?
So if you are stuck or even if you are curious as to if the job you are in is really the best fit for you, check out the career tests below. One hour of your time to answer the questions sure beats 10 years. And even if you know the job you are in is the right fit for you – career tests have the added bonus of giving you heaps of juicy information that you can use in your resume, selection criteria or when it comes to the interview. Win-Win.
Want to save yourself 10 years and have something awesome to help you write your resume? Click here to take the test: http://careerfitter.com/free_test/careerbuilder/index_affiliate_com.asp?afid=5329
To Your Success