Apparently we don’t do written references any more. Instead you list three referees with their contact numbers. The first challenge is finding THREE people. Once you get past your last two bosses that third one is tricky. Is it OK to list a colleague? I suppose they can attest to the team player criteria “oh yeah Janine was a great member of the team, she kept us entertained each morning with stories about her latest disaster at home, laugh, god she made us laugh”.
The second challenge is remembering to email your three referees each time you apply for a new job, you don’t want them getting a surprise call with no idea of what the hell job it is you’ve applied for this week. “yes Janine is a highly creative individual with a great news sense and a keen talent for writing scripts … oh right secretary in an accounting firm … well yeah she’d be good at that too”.
I suppose the bonus is my increasingly desperate emails regarding the latest application are causing my referees to invite me out for drinks and/or lunch. They are obviously feeling sorry for me.
I miss the good old written reference you attached to your applications. It was a little heads-up to the potential employer that other people had found you at least adequate in a working capacity, just a little bit of positive reinforcement from an outside source rather than the convoluted selection criteria responses you have to write about yourself.
I found some of my old references from a past life yesterday. It’s been so long the paper had actually gone yellow but people I was AWESOME.
Janine’s pleasant personality, adaptability and willingness to assist in emergency situations make her a valuable and versatile employee. – Radio Executive
Janine was completely adept at dealing with the 1001 unusual situations (and people) which seem to be part and parcel of a prime time personality radio programme. Janine was at all times thoroughly efficient, completely loyal and a cool head in a crisis.- Radio Broadcaster
Janine was always a thoroughly efficient and highly organised person. I always found her friendly and a highly motivated “ideas” person. – Radio Broadcaster/TV Personality
I have found Janine to be extremely diligent and conscientious with above average office skills always undertaken in a pleasant manner. – Film Company Executive
See this is where I feel sorry for young folks nowadays. Without anybody committing anything to paper what are they going to do when they hit a mid-life crisis and begin to question their abilities?
They won’t get to spend a morning rifling through old paperwork, remembering people who inspired, irritated, educated and amused them. They won’t have evidence that once-upon a time they possessed a variety of skills worthy of employment.
Do you remember references or am I the only dinosaur left? What was the nicest (or worst) thing anyone ever wrote for you in a reference?