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One of the neat things about being unemployed is that you get a lot of e-mails. Just sign up for CareerBuilder.com or any other job search site, and all of a sudden everyone wants to help you land a gig. Just yesterday, I received e-mails from Career Alerter, Jobungo, JobSerious, and something called Wullo. Unfortunately, most of the job postings are not exactly the result of what you would call a targeted search. Nursing Assistant, Truck Driver, Cook and Information Technology Specialist are some of the more common recommendations. As soon as I learn how to not burn waffles in my toaster oven, I will probably apply for that cooking gig.
Even more discouraging are the unsolicited e-mails from actual people you don’t know, usually with promising titles like: “You Future Starts Today,” “Be in Control,” and the cleverly deceptive “Following Up on Your Interview Request.” A lot of these have to do with realizing my lifelong dream of starting my own agency for an insurance company. These intimate-sounding e-mails usually read something like this:

Hey Stephen,

We need to talk. As you already know, Greatest American Hero Insurance Corp. is in the process of a massive, nationwide expansion. In the Midwest alone, we expect to open more than 2,000 offices in the next year.

Here’s where you come in: we are searching for enterprising, entrepreneurial, innovative and motivated self-starters to open agency offices for Greatest American Hero. I’ve seen your experience and I know you have the people skills and passion to become an outstanding agent. We at Greatest American Hero would give you to tools you need to start your office, market our menu of policies and build up a loyal customer base. Get on board, because opportunities like these don’t come around very often. Please call me today at 1-877-OUR-HERO. Don’t be afraid to achieve excellence!

Forest Berrington
Director of North America Sales

Not to look a gift horse in the mouth, but I don’t think I would be an ideal candidate to start an insurance office. I can’t even get through a 30-minute policy review with my State Farm agent without my eyes glazing over and the need to take a little nap. I have not done sales since high school, when the Greenville News-Piedmont would drop me off in the poorest neighborhoods to hawk newspaper subscriptions. That job lasted about six weeks.

So I haven’t yet responded to Forest’s e-mail about the Greatest American Hero opportunity, but I’m saving his contact information. You never know where a job search might take you.