Help Wanted

'Face it - we can't run this place on our own.'

Here’s something that I think will be really interesting. Lets make a help wanted ad. The idea being to put out a notice of employment for someone that would effectively take your place in your life.

Why? Because I think this will really help us to define ourselves. If we can look objectively at what skills, talents, and attributes are required to be who we actually really are, it might be a real eye opener. It might even give us a deeper appreciation of ourselves.

Here are some guidelines to get us started:

1 – Begin with an attention-grabbing headline.

Use positive language and action-oriented verbs, and include specific details about the position and employer.

For example, a help wanted ad headline reading, “Secretary needed for realty office,” could be more effectively reworded in this way: “Dynamic Executive Assistant needed to organize, manage and oversee office procedures for busy, uptown real estate firm.”

2 – Provide the basics.

Before you get into the more creative aspects of writing help wanted ads, it is important that you provide readers with some basic information that will give them a preliminary idea of what your ad is all about:

  • Give your company name and location.
  • List the job title, along with specifics like job level, full/part time, temporary/permanent, night/day shift, salary range, application due date and date needed to start.

An example of a suitable help wanted advertising opener would be, “ABC Corporation, located in Capital City, is currently seeking a full-time, entry-level Specialist to assume the night shift on a temporary contract basis. Salary is market-competitive and commensurate with experience. Applications must be submitted by March 1, as this position is expected to start on April 1 and run for a total of 6 months.”

3 – Summarize what you are looking for in an employee.

Qualifications include any expertise that may be required for the job, such as knowledge of computer programming, familiarity with specialized equipment, proficiency within a certain skill-set and or an understanding of job-related terminology.

For example, your help wanted ad qualifications list may read like, “must know how to use basic accounting software, able to use a 10-key with 100 percent accuracy and familiar with billing/coding terms.”

List any formal training requirements. Help wanted ads should include details about college education and/or special certification courses that apply to the position.

Be specific about the type of experience you are seeking in prospective employees. In addition to employment-length guidelines, also include generalized experience requirements. For example, you may say, “Candidates should have at least 2 years of hands-on experience working in the industry, and should be able to prove focused experience in the areas of customer service, recruiting and training.”

4 – Describe what you offer employees.

This is a chance to sell yourself, and should include a number of components:

Say something about your company’s history and/or reputation. For example, you may include something like, “We are the industry-recognized leader in providing customized, effective marketing solutions, in business since 1977.”

Expound on the company culture. For example, you may choose to point out the open-door policy of management, the casual office atmosphere or the importance you place on team building.

Offer details about the benefits of working for you, such as advancement opportunities, insurance, 401K matching, bonuses and incentives plans.

Include a standard equal-opportunity employer disclaimer.

5 -Close your help wanted ad with a call to action.

Instruct interested prospects on how, exactly, to move forward with the application process. You may want them to fax a resume, email a letter of interest or complete an online application.

Provide readers with a contact name, phone number and email address.

I thought this might seem a little daunting, but it was actually a lot of fun. I really encourage us all to do it, and am sharing my ad here because I’m hoping it’ll give everyone some good ideas, and the desire to write one of their own. Feel free to share yours in the comments.

Here’s My Example:

Amazing and talented individual needed to take over for reclusive, anti-social, eccentric artist, blogger, and dropout from society.

Shirley Twofeathers, located in the middle of nowhere USA, seeks a full time worker that is capable of:

  • Writing a ridiculous number of posts every day for an overly ambitious website.
  • Creating as much cool art as possible from overflowing boxes of art supplies and junk.
  • Spending 3 to 4 days a week bathing dogs, cleaning up nasty messes, waiting on customers,  answering phones, keeping up with payroll and paper work, and being happy to do it.
  • Caring for 2 birds, 4 cats, and a great big dog.
  • Minor and not so minor home repairs.
  • Outside renovations involving fence building, landscaping, gardening, trash removal, mowing, and more.
  • Meeting all family obligations, as well as spending quality time with children and grand children.

Must also be intelligent and interesting, have a sense of humor, be easy to get along with, and fun to hang out with. Great cooking skills would be a bonus. The right candidate will also be someone who enjoys hanging out in grave yards at night, meeting the Spirit of the Corn in a cornfield under a full moon, skipping rocks across a pond, and screaming at the top of their lungs for no particular reason.

This full time position requires overnight stays, an absolute commitment to stick it out no matter what, and comes with these amazing perks:

  • A huge library of books, music, movies, and TV shows on DVD.
  • A large piece of property to enjoy.
  • Bird songs in the mornings.
  • A loving family.

The salary is adequate to meet basic needs with enough left over for a few luxuries and some fun stuff.

Shirley Twofeathers was founded in a moment of madness when she decided that it’d be a great idea to come screaming into life with lots of big ideas, and a propensity for epic fails. She pretty much raised herself, and is dedicated to remaining true to that self.

She is an equal opportunity employer, wiling to give just about anything or anyone a chance to prove themselves. If you wish to apply, leave your resume in my mailbox and then tag me on Facebook. Please feel free to leave a comment if you have questions about the position.

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