Daves' Diary

Welcome to my very own slice of the world wide web. This is an account of my trials and tribulations as I try to forge ahead on this spinning globe and get myself a 'career' in the process. Please read on and make sure your feet are clean. Thanks!

Saturday, 24 October 2015

New job

Now working at Robert Gordon University with all the smart people...

Monday, 28 September 2015

Turning the page...

As I trundle through yet another mid life career crisis I find myself turning the page  and a new chapter beckons. Now, with a new job starting tomorrow what lies ahead?

Friday, 25 September 2015

Next job...

Have secured a temporary job. In another new sector but at least I am not having to move city again. Is this a stepping stone, platform or stop-gap. Only time will tell....

Thursday, 24 September 2015


A year ago I left a job in order to move to another company. I was to be doing a very similar job. What were my main drivers for this move? Better technology, better management and, not a big factor, some more money (car allowance was nice to get). This bold and adventurous move lasted 3 weeks before I was shown the door. Not great. I had walked into a perfect storm of crashing oil prices, a team leader not up to the job and a company that was as bad as, or worse, than the one I had left. Also I believed the location would be better for me personally too. I was duped, did not look before I lept and did not ask the right questions. The last 12 months as a result of this have been pretty tough. I have spent 8 months without a job. This has been very hard and very frustrating. Marie has totally stuck by me and supported me through this. I am marrying Marie because I love her very much and if I don't seize this opportunity to be happy it will be gone.

Monday, 21 September 2015

DSS sign off....

There comes a time in everybody's life where circumstances change. Either for better or worse. On this occasion at the end of a chain, which I see as both fortuitous and just, I am signing off DSS statistics as I now have job. This is saving the government coffers some much needed cash and is reinstating my self esteem. All that glitters may not be gold but I see done shiny lights ahead.

Interview Day Out

Had a day trip to Glasgow today to meet with SSE and discuss a 12 month opportunity as a Resourcing Consultant. Had thought it might be a pretty casual affair with an immediate offer. This made me happy
Turns out it was quite formal. Lots of structured questioning. Actually had met one interviewer (there were 2) at a previous interview. With RBS back in February. Not sure if this is good or bad as I didn't get that job
Think the interview went well but you can never tell. Maybe my technical engineering pitch was good enough to get me invited back?

At least my shoes were clean
Still on train. Getting bored
Cheerio xx

Sunday, 20 September 2015


Well, now I am at another career crossroads having been offered a temporary role with RGU. This is s job I applied for because it was temporary and with a very good institution. Is it another stop-gap or steppingstone (to what....?). Does it bring an end to my high level corporate recruiting skills. Not necessarily. What it does mean is that I get to stay in Aberdeen with Marie. That is what I want and the rest will fall into place. Thank you RGU.

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Interview Day Out

Had a day trip to Glasgow today to meet with SSE and discuss a 12 month opportunity as a Resourcing Consultant. Had thought it might be a pretty casual affair with an immediate offer. This made me happy
Turns out it was quite formal. Lots of structured questioning. Actually had met one interviewer (there were 2) at a previous interview. With RBS back in February. Not sure if this is good or bad as I didn't get that job
Think the interview went well but you can never tell. Maybe my technical engineering pitch was good enough to get me invited back?

At least my shoes were clean
Still on train. Getting bored
Cheerio xx


Still on train

Shoes still shiny

Still bored.....

Thursday, 10 September 2015


I get changed, warm up then off I go. My rind can be good, bad, steady, faster, slower, sweaty....etc. Sometimes I enjoy them and other times I don't but STILL I GO. How does this equate to or help my job hunting?

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

What to do what to do....

Interview in one place
Life in another
What to do....

Coffee shop

In another (my regular) coffee shop. Why? Well, this is where I can relax and plan my day.....actually I can sit and ponder all the great questions of life. What is happening to my career? What changes can I make? Why are my legs stiff? How big is the universe? Can I work for the DSS?

These are all burning issues for me. Not ranked in order but work comes first. At least I have a paper to read and a window to stare out...

Monday, 24 August 2015

DSS irony....

Odd isn't it. I go and sign on always slightly sarcastically but up ear nonetheless. Seems there might be done fixed term opportunities emerging there. These would be ideal for me. It all changes shape. Odd isn't it..?

DSS appt

Good morning 
Quiet today?
Still here I'm afraid
Going ok but no breaks yet

Maybe see you soon but hopefully not.....nothing personal!

Wednesday, 19 August 2015


Despite all my negative background noise about the council I quite enjoyed the interview. Told them always best to employ the first candidate. Was quite light hearted whilst keeping a serious face. Might work for me. Might work against me.....again!

3rd strike

Have interview number 3 with Aberdeen Council today. Getting selected is good but am I applying for anything I see? Haven't felt a spark with any of these jobs. They would pay the bills (just) but not much else. Where's the excitement and stimulation in being an Admin Assistant?

Sunday, 9 August 2015

New perspective

Got engaged this weekend. Pretty grown up decision. Smartest thing I have ever done.

Thursday, 6 August 2015


Was told I would hear that night or the next day. The next day has come and gone. Still no word.....?


Public sector v private sector. Two different beasts 

and I have worked in both. Can see good and bad in all. I have one or is it better not to consider the minutiae of life too deeply? This public sector interview (in one hour from now) will keep me in Aberdeen, give me an income and, ironically, a pension. Don't forget self esteem and adding new skills to my profile (will lengthen  my CV too!). More importantly it means a lot for me and Marie.

Tuesday, 4 August 2015


Student Loans Company interview in Glasgee. Sitting in Costa coffee doing my prep and looking out window at Pret a Manger (next to Run 4 It). Confidence, fulled by caffeine, is HIGH!!

Wednesday, 29 July 2015


Coffee shop research is ongoing. Currently leader is Pret at only 1.75. Going to be hard to beat...


I am not a free man..

Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Kept on file...

Not all applications are successful so I am kept on/in a file...
Better than being stuck in the bin...


Given my current period of penny watching and increased spendthriftyness (due to lack of income generating employment) I am researching the best, most affordable, coffee shops for my daily cuppa Americano. Today I am in Cafe Nero. Coffee is ok (they are remarkably similar from shop to shop) but at £2.10 it is not the most financially friendly. I like my window seat though. Research is ongoing.

Wednesday, 22 July 2015


Thinking about diversifying and building a new career. Possible avenues:

The choice is, seemingly, endless. Need to give this done serious thought.

Monday, 20 July 2015

Career choice

Maybe I should have been a golfer....?


After careful consideration we have decided your face does not fit. In addition we are giving you no feedback at all. Best of luck in your continuing job search..

A. N. Employer 

Thursday, 16 July 2015

What's for you....

....won't go by you.....

Luck... make your own....


When I apply for jobs I tend to do absolute full of confidence that I will be progressed (except when I applied to Downing Street - that was slightly tongue in cheek) so imagine my shock/horror/surprise/confusion/dismay when this does not happen?! 

It does happen though and helps keep my aspirational feet grounded. Mind you they are all wrong in their decisions!

Wednesday, 15 July 2015


Have another interview today. Have had a few recently but this is the first one actually in Aberdeen. That makes it more important. With the council so stable, sustainable and secure. Personally it will help me to stay in one place and put down some roots. Wish me more luck!

Friday, 10 July 2015


A bus came along today. I had my ticket booked but didn't get in. Felt it was taking me too far from my intended destination.

Thursday, 9 July 2015


They say that buses come along in twos when none have been seen for ages. Have to make sure you have the right fare and the bus is going the right way. Don't want to get off at wrong stop or sit next to wrong person. Never be rude to the driver. Be smartly dressed and have a wash just before the journey. Buses are just like jobs. Analogy ad nauseum....

Monday, 6 July 2015

Here we go....

This is not a football chant but more of a long pissed off sigh. I am revisiting my job hunting routine. Same DSS palava, coffee shop visits and head scratching. Need to revitalise my attitude as I have had interviews recently with more coming up..Snap out of this downbeat 'life is tough' attitude. What would John Wayne do? Give up or get on his horse and charge?

What works.....

In the interview/job search 'process' what works best? Having the right experience, qualifications, competencies, suit, shirt, tie and shoes. Get the perfect storm right by being in the right place at the right time and world is yours...

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Saturday, 20 June 2015

NCR contracting....

In my final 2 weeks. Was only ever a 3 month role so cannot complain. It is disappointing because it is obvious they need someone in this role in Dundee. So why not me.....? Poor decision on the mangers part stem from a lack of understanding of the North East recruitment scene. I want a perm Job anyway and not an extension but what will be will be. Have interviews set up so just focus on them. Keep reading!

Monday, 15 June 2015


In the world of business recruitment will only ever be seen as a transactional function. It is never the core income generator. For this reason it is never going to be fully supported and allowed to become a deeply embedded core function.

 This business model is damaging I believe and recruitment, when properly run, can help an organisation succeed and become an employer of choice. Until that happens  I will always be a transactional transient. Sad face.

Saturday, 6 June 2015


It goes on and on. My current job, after months of searching and worrying, has taken me from one extreme to another. Have never had to work so hard. How is it going I hear you yell? It has been very hard and very demanding. I am rengineering my work ethic and skilksets. Contract finishes in a month. Will it be extended......wait and see!

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Flip side...

My enforced and prolonged period of recent unemployment (nearly 6 months) saw me wrestling, once again, with job market. Made more difficult by the crash in price of crude. Aberdeen was entering its own black recession and I was in the middle of it.

How was this time for me? Pretty terrible. Struggling to get 'traction' or useful leads. There was nothing to get a grip on so no leads were to be found.

These were bleak and desperate days. I applied for jobs, had some interviews, went running and baked banana cakes. All designed to keep me sane, useful and hopeful.

I had two major advantages. My mother, as always, supportive and understanding. My girlfriend Marie was especially wonderful. Unstinting love and support. Even with my tears and raised voice she stuck by me.  Truly wonderful. I love Marie very much.

Thursday, 14 May 2015


What is the correlation between fitness and work?

The harder you work at fitness the fitter you get.


If you are working hard (at your job) then the less time you have to keep fit so you get unfit.

I have been very fit in years gone by so have obviously had too much on my hands. I have not worked hard enough. QED.

In my current job I work very hard. My fitness is less than before. The balance is complete as is the circle. I prefer being fit....!

Monday, 11 May 2015

Wednesday, 29 April 2015


Today I am reaching out, connecting and eating free food.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Day 1

First day at new (temporary contractor) job with NCR yesterday was fairly typical but at least colleagues in my zone are are good to work with. IT coming together. Smallish steps....

Monday, 30 March 2015

Breaking out...

5 months unemployed has seen me, again, develop a semi-comfortable routine/rut by which to live my life. I now have to break away from this and build a new work focussed rut...!

Saturday, 28 March 2015

Longevity 2

In a previous post I considered staying in my 'long term' job. I didn't do this and moved on. When I got 'released' from the new job after only 3 weeks my world came crashing down. 5 months later and I starting a new job journey.....!

Friday, 27 March 2015

Got job details

Only by phone
No handshake
No eye contact
No competency
No suit
No tie

No waaaaay.........!


Got job with NCR in Dundee today. So happy/relieved/exhausted that I am drunk....!!


Might get a job soon. Vibes are running at about 62% positive (highest for last 6 months) but we will see. Historically I can read situations poorly! Will probably have to leave Aberdeen (for how long....?) if I want to put a red pen through this chapter of my life!

Thursday, 26 March 2015


The long wait is pretty hard to handle (I am discovering this again and again....) emotionally, psychologically and in any other way. Do I relax and let events just unfold? I am inclined to get involved where I shouldn't, think too much, work myself into a quiet frenzy and shed silent tears. Not dealing with situation very well....!!


Waiting for feedback from interviews is tough. What is happening, how long, turnaround times, plan plan plan.......still better to be stressing about this than get no interviews at all..!

Thursday, 19 March 2015

Telephone interview

Thinking about face to face interviews can be stressful. All the prep, research, presentation, hair, choice of suit, choice of shirt and tie, eye contact and firm handshakes. All quite tough going. Not to mention perspiration.

Telephone interviews require same prep but can be done naked if you choose.


Had telephone interview today (NCR as last week) and it went much better, again, than I had anticipated. I am being a bit too glass half empty rather than look at possibilities and opportunities. Is this a Scottish trait or just me? Because I felt last weeks manager handled it poorly I expected same again but surprise surprise I was wrong. Manager was good and we spoke at length. Reasonably confident in a pessimistic way....

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Yesterday's effort....

Interview with Prudential in Stirling. Went better than anticipated. Competency based conversation went well. I did not perspire or cry (only on the inside). Would be very pleased to get an offer. We will see..!!

NCR Interview no.2

Had a telephone interview with NCR in Dundee last week for a 3 month gig. Kinda odd as was speaking to German lady in London. Was unsuccessful and got no feedback (see a previous post/s) so wrote them off my list of prospectives. But, wait, halt, stand easy.... They have a second opportunity for which I am being interviews tomorrow!

Monday, 16 March 2015


Long (3 hour) drive to location. This job will mean moving away from aberdeen. Early arrival. Check out venue. Drive into town. Find tesco. Buy sandwich and deodorant. Eat sandwich and change in car park. Still early so writing this!

Bob chance mon Amis!!

Thursday, 12 March 2015

No CV please....

Aberdeen Council has a recruitment system that does not need you to submit s CV. Cannot decide if this is good or bad. Don't think it does me any favours with my fragmented past and present situation....

Monday, 9 March 2015

Aberdeen University job

Unsuccessful in my half (quarter) hearted attempt to secure/win this job. This saved me some anguish and a bothersome decision. The feedback was highly generic snd no use at all.

Anyway they didn't shake hands or offer water (see previous 'etiquette' post)....not unhappy but sad not to have s job..!!

Sorry but....

Sitting in coffee shop (where else...) reading notes for telephone interview later today. At the table opposite (I am earwigging) a young man is being let go by his manager. Interesting to hear as it is being dealt with very professionally. All about opportunities, strengths, the grass is always greener....

Have also been to DSS for my earlier (unnecessary) signing.

How much busier and exciting will my day get......JOB SUCCESS TODAY!!

Love a trier....

Saturday, 7 March 2015


Have an interview on Monday for good job in Dundee. This excited me greatly so I rushed out and bought a new suit (having ironed mine shiny for my last interview..) as mine needed replacing. URGENT change and interview is now by phone. At least I have a new suit.....maybe new job too!!


I have a phone interview on Monday for temp job with NCR in Dundee. Job is absolutely what I do and know. It is in Dundee and this intrigues and, sort of, excites me (middle age does funny things). Wouldn't see Marie so regular but we have discussed. Might actually make us closer or even bring a deeper intent from me. We will see as haven't got the job yet....

What, pray tell, excites me about Dundee...? Actually, sadly, think it is the job that excites me (another mid-life conundrum..)

Stay posted for updates...

Thursday, 5 March 2015


At an interview I expect at least a hand offered to shake. After the strenuous hand shaking ceremony a glass of water would've nice. I got neither at today's interview....

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Wednesday, 18 February 2015


This battle goes on and on and on. Like looking into a black hole for a ray of light.....

Monday, 16 February 2015

Magic pill....

Today I have to meet with s DSS adviser. I will be advised on job searching. All I ever do is search for jobs, search for for joy! What will I learn?

For now I am in cafe Nero after another morning spent online battle with the modern recruitment process.

Have an interview with Aberdeen Univesity next week. Maybe I should think about this while I sip my tea and chew my biscuit...!!?

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Job situation...

As ever with this ongoing life story things are not as they should be yet. Might have to relocate. Rolling stone keeps on rolling.....

Competency interviews...

Had one of these yesterday. Not the most pleasant experience ever....

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

history we go again....

repletion as a sign of madness.......

Thank you for your recent application for our Account Manager vacancy.
After careful consideration we regret to advise you that you have not been shortlisted for interview as other candidates more closely matched the job specification.
Please don't let this put you off applying for other positions now or in the future with PETERSON .  
Thank you for the interest you have shown and we wish you every success in your search for a suitable role.

and more........

Hi David
Apologies for the delay in getting back on this, I was out of the office yesterday.
Unfortunately they have moved on to second stage interview with a couple of people so unless things don’t work out there it seems unlikely they will schedule any more interviews.
I will let you know if I hear anything further

more..........different words.......same story.....

Hi David,
Thank for your interest in this role and for expressing an interest in joining us. I am currently looking to fill one specific desk, and fortunately I've been able to identify a number of individuals with experience of recruiting within this specific area. Due to this, I plan to bring these people in for interview in the first instance.
I wish you all the best with your search and do feel free to contact me if we can assist further.
All the best,

what light through yonder window....

Hi David,
It was good to speak with you today, thank you for your time.

As discussed, please find attached a copy of the job description for the current vacancy.
Please get back to me if you are open to discussing the role further and I would be pleased to follow up.
Kind regards,


Dear David,
Thanks for your response.
On that basis, I would like to invite you to attend a short, 30-minute telephone screen with myself on Tuesday 3rd February at 10:30pm.  I will call you on number 07801 074851
The conversation will be biographical in nature, and will enable me to find out a bit more about your skills and experience, and how these relate to the role(s) we are recruiting for.  You will also have an opportunity to ask any questions you may have about the role and working with the Bank.
Please let me know by return of email if this date/time is convenient

Multiple messages....some good and some not so good.....grab a chance!!

Monday, 12 January 2015


Large chunks of my life now seem to be dedicated to the purpose of job searching. Kinda fed up with this. Love a challenge though!