Top Five Things NOT to Say to an Unemployed Person

For starters, if you have never been in this unfortunate position, you would not completely understand the dynamics of the situation. Whether you are laid off, fired, looking for a new job, or whatever your situation is, the opportunities out there are slim pickings and have been for some time. It is frustrating enough to get an interview, much less a secure job, but there are some things that people say to you that simply do not help this process.

5. “You didn’t like your last job, so you got what you wanted.” Nobody asks to be broke. Getting out of a bad situation is ideal, of course, but landing in a worse one would definitely not be considered the grand prize. I know what you’re saying, but this does not help.

4. “Damn, you haven’t found nothing yet?” Self-explanatory.

3. “What have you been doing?” Well, I’ve just been propped up in bed, eating ice cream, tuned in to Jerry Springer, and watching the days whiz by. People don’t realize how insulting this question is. Just because I’m at the crib, doesn’t mean that I haven’t been productive in my job search. We do live in the age of technology and most jobs require your resume to be emailed or they have you do an online application. Would it make you feel better if I went to the library and applied on their computer instead of using mine at home?

2. “At least it’s a job.” Accepting whatever job in order to pay the bills is last resort. The goal is to find either the same job as the last or better, not settling. Would you say the same if you were talking about a person? “At least you’ve got a boyfriend.” NO. This is a no-win line. Yeah, you have a job, but you probably have to sacrifice your sanity and happiness.  This rationale does not work for everybody.

And, once you finally secure some kind of job, what’s the worst thing that you can hear?

1. “Your check has not been processed yet.” Need I say more?

So, what did you learn today… Unless you have something productive to say, such as “So and so is hiring”, “I can write you a recommendation”, or “My friend so-so can pass on your name/resume”, don’t talk.