like to discuss my friend’s current situation. He
is a US citizen and a California resident. He obtained his
MBA degree in business and bachelors in computer information
systems from an accredited university in California.
He has been struggling to get a suitable job in his field
but has had no luck so far. He had been unrelenting in applying
for various jobs but had no response or acknowledgement
from anywhere so far. A whole exasperating year has passed!
How do you see his situation?
Finding the perfect job can certainly be a daunting task
at times. Although there may be specific situational factors
that are preventing your friend from finding a job, I will
address some “best practices” here that may
help him in his job search.
First of all, there are numerous job seeker resources that
your friend has probably utilized, local help wanted ads,
websites such as monster.com, careerbuilder.com, and dice.com.
These tools not only allow you to apply for jobs, but also
to showcase your resume...and the resume of millions of
other job seekers around the world. Although these are wonderful
ways to reach potential employers, it is important to realize
that the sheer number of faceless applicants for any particular
position can make it very difficult for any one applicant
to stand out in the crowd.
As a result, networking with other professionals in your
field has taken on an even greater role.
Networking can be in the form of job fairs, professional
conferences, or even social parties.
Appearance, knowledge and etiquette are key to making a
good impression, because you never know who you’ll
meet or where those connections may lead.
There are also various “headhunter” organizations
that may be able to help your friend find a job. These recruiters
specialize in finding people to fill positions at local
companies. They help with resume writing and interviewing
skills so that job seekers gain a polished and professional
Resume writing, by the way, is an art. Always make sure
that your resume is neat, easy-to-read, and free of spelling
and grammar errors. A resume needs to quickly and efficiently
lay out a person’s education and work experiences.
The bells and whistles can be a nice touch, but they should
not be distracting. Be aware of the overall look of the
resume. That includes the fonts, bolded text, use of white
space, etc. As a recruiter once told me, sometimes it’s
not what you have in your resume, but how it is presented
that makes all the difference.
And finally, since your friend has a graduate degree, it
may also be worthwhile for him to pay a visit to the career
center at his alma mater. Collee career counselors can provide
Although finding employment can sometimes be a full-time
job on its own, it is very important for your friend to
stay involved in professional activities, so that his resume
does not reflect a long period of unexplained unemployment.
He can contact temp agencies that may be able to help him
find temporary jobs while looking for a permanent position.
He should also continue to take professional development
courses so that he remains current on the trends in his
field. This will increase his marketability to potential
And remember, depending on his financial situation, sometimes
a lower-paying job can be better than no job at all. Most
successful individuals in the United States have held odd
jobs at one point or another in their careers. Good luck
to your friend and happy job-hunting!
(Are You Looking for
Advice, but Don’t Know where to Turn?
Dear Nausheen wants to hear from you. So many of us suffer
in silence, looking for answers to life’s personal
struggles. Sometimes, we just want an impartial ear that
will listen. Other times, we need someone who is willing
to knock some sense into a convoluted situation.
Dear Nausheen is an advice column that will address the
unique personal, social and cultural perspectives of South
Asian Muslims in the United States. Nausheen Pasha-Zaidi
is an author, teacher, mom, and mentor. Born in Karachi
and raised in New York, Nausheen has lived and worked in
a number of states in the US. Her experiences have provided
her with a balanced, no-nonsense approach to life that is
tethered by her ability to regard the validity of multiple
“I don’t see the world in black-and-white, but
in glorious hues of pastel.”
If you are at a crossroads or have an issue you would like
to discuss, send us your thoughts. We encourage you to use
a fictitious name for yourself and anyone else you mention
in your letter. Your contact information will not be disclosed.
Selected letters will be edited and published in Pakistan
Please address your letters seeking Nausheen’s advice