The Better Cover Letter

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A Light In The Darkness

Altruism is the new ambition. What other reason could there be for the deluge of applicants for paid positions in the non-profit sector? Organizations which rely on donations to carry out their mission attract top talent, and for good reason. The profit driven life is drudgery for the individual contributor who toils without purpose under the specter of corporate budget cuts.

Saving the world from itself requires strategic thinkers who get things done. It also takes money, lots of it. This is where a talent search can pay off for the savvy leader who hires me to implement a proven strategy taken straight from a successful playbook. I am an experienced professional who understands that adversity and opportunity are perennial.

The future of a global economy is very much rooted in the past. Global powers are not more connected now than they ever were. It only seems that way because instead of waiting months for an envoy to deliver news, all that’s required today is a tweet.

Funding for a wide range of non-profit missions is extremely competitive. The cost of fundraising, which is criticized by skeptical donors, forces non-profits to work a global economic puzzle without all the pieces. How to do business without funds for the cost of doing business is a challenge that can drive non-profits into the ground.

The current model is unsustainable for organizations operating day-to-day in crisis mode. We don’t need more studies to tell us what we already know. What the NGO world needs now is cooperation, vision, and action to get the mission accomplished.

 

 

Friday Fictioneers – Off The Rails

Credit where credit is due, this week’s Friday Fictioneer prompt was provided by C.E. Ayr. Many thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for keeping the challenge running on time. Off The Rails seemed an apt title for my contribution this week. I assure you, every word counts. More FF stories are here. Thanks for reading.

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PHOTO PROMPT © C.E. Ayr

Off The Rails

On a gloomy Tuesday, Cooper called Lou. Lou set down his phone. He was stunned. He felt used. A ticking time-bomb he couldn’t defuse had been tossed at his feet, there was nothing to do but go home to his wife and tell her the news.

“That Cooper should have to walk a mile in your shoes!”

“I know you are shocked. I’m dumbfounded too.”

“What happens next month when the mortgage is due?”

Lou smiled at his wife and held out his hand, “We’ll figure it out, Dear. I love you.”

“Sure we will. I love you too, Lou.”

*****

The Real Deal

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Watching your hard work go unexpectedly up in flames can have a traumatizing effect on a person. One minute there is praise that raises your confidence to new heights, and the next you’re burned to a crisp. Nothing damages your ability to trust more than getting blind-sided by the very person who shares in your success, even profits from it, all the while holding the knife soon to be thrust into your back.

Greed has a cascade effect on the lives of those who unwittingly contribute to it. Carrots may keep employees coming back for more, but once the memo about doing more with less begins to circulate, it’s time to update your resume. A word of advice: Beware of the stock option incentive plan, the mother of all carrots. Companies that use the promise of future reward for past performance exploit loyal employees without regard for the impact it has on families when indiscriminate number crunching hits even the most exceptional performer right between the eyes.

Staying positive in the midst of uncertainty is critical. For seasoned, even well-seasoned, professionals this can be a challenge. The “not my first rodeo” attitude only gets you so far. Fortunately networking strategies abound on sites like LinkedIn and AARP. It may be a dog eat dog world, but if dog fights aren’t your thing and you’re unwilling to let a lifetime of professional experience go to the dogs, take heart, the dog days will soon be over.

Keeping fear and anger under control after a job loss requires a particular skill set. Roosevelt got it right when he said, “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” He went a step further and identified the fear of his day as “—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.” Seems there’s nothing new under the sun when it comes to fear. It is my firm belief that we can prevent fear from paralyzing and use the emotion of anger to propel us forward.

I was once told by an unscrupulous boss that perception is reality. I refused to accept that notion then and I do not believe it now. I will concede that the difference between reality and virtual reality is almost imperceptible. Almost.

 

 

When Living In The Moment Is A Bad Idea

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A diligent job search becomes an urgent one when two experienced professionals find themselves in the midst of a storm. There are no hard feelings, no feelings at all, for the decision maker who does not comprehend that in order to create value for an organization, one must cultivate loyalty. This action, of course, requires trust, a concept which may be irrevocably damaged by the prevailing climate of deception gripping corporate America.

Once upon a time, the “company man” (no gender intended), was the standard bearer for what made the American workforce great. This brand of employee, not necessarily given a corner office over the span of a career, was certainly rewarded for loyalty and definitely not cast aside on the whim of the shareholder.

Are the days when the words “value added” meant that everyone profits from efficiency and innovation gone forever? Has the definition of value been corrupted through synthesis of “core values” – integrity, loyalty, and transparency – nothing more than window dressing for a global store front?

In this moment, it seems so.

 

Side Effects Of Mediocre Poetry

A project I worked on for one of my anthropology classes has provided me with a great deal of material, some comic, some not so much. Ever since I scrapped the Drunken Poet’s Campout story last week, I have been unable to shake the ring and rhyme that has infected the muse attempting to safeguard my sanity during the conflict inducing, merry making season that is upon us. So, this week’s Friday Fictioneer prompt seems a good reason to share some of my research on the history of human conflict.

How humans express what matters most to us is an important area of study for anthropologists. Art, in its many forms, attempts to help us understand ourselves as well as the rise and fall of civilizations throughout recorded time. I use writing and photography to make sense of the world around me, since Apple has pretty much ruined music for me.

Many art forms have been used to commemorate the conquests of great civilizations, dance, painting, photography, poetry. Cultural artifacts curated in museums around the globe, where acts of treachery and bravery are on display for all the world to see, give us a magnificent pictorial record of humanity’s triumphs and tragedies. The ancient war depiction at the Karnak Hypostyle Hall is the standard by which war scene art is measured.

The horrors of war are at our fingertips. So, why do we continue to ignore the warning signs? I don’t have an answer. I can only guess it has something to do with mediocre poetry.

Wrong All Along

Greedy and Stingy sittin’ on the sea

F-U-S-S-I-N-G

First came land

Then came chattel

Then came tribes with a sabre rattle

See what I mean? That is enough to instigate a playground scuffle.

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King Alfred’s ships fighting marauding Vikings: Battle of Ashdown 8th January 871 AD in the Danish Wars: picture by Harry Payne

 

Thanks to Rochelle, who rallies the troops, and her childhood pal Lucy for this inspirational prompt. More Fictioneers are here. For my 100 word story, look out below!

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Copyright Lucy Fridkin

Landfall

The commander commands, “Pillage the village! Plunder the town! Turn the world upside down!” Teams move out from the shoreline.

Beyond the buildings and parking lots there are miles of unexploited territory. Orders are to fill ’em full o’ lead and kill ’em good-n-dead. Players are motivated to show what they’re made of. They gouge the stoney ground and feed their bloody lust. They crush the citizens into dust.

It matters not the weapons at their disposal. They simply use what’s on hand for the grand proposal, until vulture and vermin victory spied. The battle is over and everyone died.

*****

Interesting Links:

http://www.metmuseum.org/connections/war_and_conflict#/

http://www.bowdoin.edu/~ktravers/projects/heijiscroll/intro.html

http://www.pacsa-web.eu/about-us/

http://www.colorado.edu/csilw/arapahoproject/dancemusic/ghost1.htm

http://learner.org/courses/globalart/theme/3/index.html

http://www.britishbattles.com/danish-wars/battle-of-ashdown/

http://www.berghahnbooks.com/title.php?rowtag=BrauchlerCyberidentities

Credit: Bayeux Tapestry animation by David Newton
Music and sound design by Marc Sylvan