As an attempt to try to master how to fit in recruitment situations, since I wasn’t very successful at finding a job that corresponds to my curriculum, I thought that I might have been lacking skills in this particular field - job hunting - so I enrolled in two different job search programs this year.
The first program was provided by Le Pont, a non-profit center for women in Trois-Rivières. They gave me a ‘diploma’ at the end of the 2-month training, although I found no job.
Everyone from there had no clue what open government is about. They had never heard of it before.
Furthermore, these women told me they had never seen a resume like mine. They said that I am a special case, a sort of strange phenomenon. Out of the box. These women did not know what to do with me.
I had to do a recruitment simulation, as part of this program. They set me up with the ex woman director of their center. They called someone of a high caliber to interview me.
She probably did not understand what is the open government philosophy, but she told me that I can convince. She said that I have these skills. I felt relieved by this comment, because I do not talk much in real life. Besides my strong presence in social media, I can go days without opening my mouth, and it’s fine with me: I like just Being. I can spend hours with someone without saying a word, just observing this person, listening to her talk and enjoying her presence. This is not really the kind of individual found in the sphere in which I would like to be successful. So I had very serious doubts about me.
This recruitment experience and job training center did not help me to get a job, but it gave me wings.
Two weeks after completing the training, I spent my savings to go to Edmonton, Alberta, and meet with open government advocate, Adriel Hampton, and several other advocates and government officials.
And shortly after that, I met John F Moore, CEO of Government in the Lab. I ended up doing a lot of volunteer work for TheLab, because we couldn’t find the money to pay for my work.
I was getting increasingly nervous, I thought that I did everything the wrong way, because I could not come to reach any financial success in my numerous business development efforts.
To make a long story short, in September 2011, I decided to enroll in a second training program. There must have been something that I had not learned well yet. So I went back to school.
This program was different from the first. It was more condensed, and it was open to both men and women. We had to follow a strict procedure. There was a strict scenario for everything, and they made sure we were respecting it. When I made a phone call - I tried my luck with municipalities in my area - I was transferred directly to the mayor of the city. The proposed scenario was not designed for self-employed or consultant workers. It was for employees, such as secretaries, salesmen, mechanics, etc.
Furthermore, mayors did not know about the open government philosophy, and they did not know that the provincial government was studying and analyzing possibilities of open government policies. I ended up having to do free public relations for the government, before getting the chance to introduce myself. I failed respecting the scenario code. I was unable to convert my story into their given script.
Participants of this program had to do a filmed interview (simulation of a recruitment). I was asked to make a simulation as if I applied to a Communications Officer position. Something I did at the beginning of my career. Sweeping away my professional experience of the past 20 years. All the questions revolved around ‘how do you get into the mold’. I was not able to answer. I realized that all my life, I was out of the mold. After failling at this recruitment simulation, I am a little ashamed to admit it here, but I was promptly fired from the training program. They said that they have only one approach, and that I do not fit.
I applied to another program, for self-employed workers in a precarious financial situation. My application was rejected for the following reason: “I am too good and authorities do not know how to handle me.” They changed their answer, three months later, after I tried to convince several members of the National Assembly, to “the project does not fit business criteria”.
In my previous attempts to find a job in the pandemic preparedness field, I was told (from a government stand point), in recruitment processes that “only the government is allow to think about these things”, and that “only the ideas proposed by the people on their committees are retained”. The last word was that these things were immature and not credible. A consultant firm, located outside the country, hired me as a pandemic analyst, and ended my term for lack of contracts, a similar situation that repeated itself with Government in the Lab (although this time, there was no money to hire me).
I would like to be able to stop being out of the box. But it’s too difficult. It seems impossible. After my 2 job training fails, I was so discouraged with myself that I saw a social therapist. She explained me about spiral development, and told me there was nothing wrong with my brain, nor my choices. I followed this path for a reason, that goes back to the day I left Architecture school at McGill University. She showed me that I did this for a good reason. She recommended me not to accept any job, just for the money. She said that it would be a bad idea to let go of my open government dreams. She suggested to go back to school a couple of years, do a masters or phd, the time that the situation at the government evolves. Uh. More school hey. I have exhausted a large chunk of my savings. Unfortunately, I cannot afford this option.