A Thanksgiving Story
November 24th, 2008
Matt Mecs is a smart, successful, generous and giving person. He is juggling a million things right now yet he volunteered to write a guest post to celebrate Thanksgiving. We are thankful to him.
Like many other people who suddenly find themselves out of work (some estimates say it could rise up to 10% of the population), I find myself having to vigorously ‘network’ which I find quite distasteful. It just seems phony that five minutes after meeting someone, you ask what he or she does and offhandedly ask, “oh by the way, do you mind forwarding on my resume?”
Then you have to walk that fine line between being persistent and nagging to make sure it actually gets done. Few things are more degrading than being a supplicant…
However, it has to be done, and I find myself pleasantly surprised by how helpful relative strangers can be. Perhaps it is because they are doing so with no sense of obligation, but because they want to help. There was one woman at a top company who met with me once, and it was a total waste of her time since I was unqualified. However, I wrote her a thank you note afterwards, (apparently a dying practice), and we parted on very pleasant terms.
This was a few months ago. After getting laid off, I reached out to her yet again, and asked her if she would not mind keeping her eyes open for me. My motivation was to cover all my angles, as opposed to actually expecting anything of it. She wrote me back 10 minutes later, stating 6 companies that she had forwarded my resume to.
I don’t expect anything to come of this, but that is not the point. She is just so sweet and nice to do this, and I feel enormously grateful to her. I wrote her a 2nd thank you note for all her trouble, and said that I hope one day I can help her out in some way. This is not out of any sense of debt, but because it gives me great pleasure to help someone who helped me.
I am too cynical to tie this generic story specifically to Thanksgiving, and besides that, this is a feeling that can happen any time of the year.
It is truly a warm, human, feeling to help someone, and such a pleasant surprise to be helped.
Happy Thanksgiving all!