Marketability articles are a common phenomenon, but what if you enjoy unemployment? Fresh from the depths of the Raindance archives comes the perfect article for you.
In 2009 Raindance intern Charlie Burroughs shared these 10 brilliantly unfruitful tips for staying unmarketable. If you heed Charlie’s thoughtful advice you won’t just be among the unmarketable, you’ll be the lowest of the low.
If your goal is to continue wallowing in your joblessness, no need to budge an inch. Pull out your fuzzy slippers and set up office on your sofa, and read on.
1. Hate Twitter
First there was MySpace, then came Facebook and LinkedIn, and soon Twitter came tweeting along. Maybe you’ve had enough of the social media craze and are avoiding Twitter on principle.
It’s also possible you or your friends have said something like this, “This looks stupid, and it doesn’t make any sense.” This is one line of thought that is a great way to stay unmarketable when out of work.
It’s true that you don’t want to live your life 140 characters at a time, but a little Twittering a day could line you up for a job opportunity. In fact, Twitter now advertises “tweets” of job vacancies for specific companies. When a job is available, Twitter sends you a 140-character “tweet” with a short description and link to the job’s website.
Check it out here: www.twitjobsearch.com
But like I said if you want to stay unmarketable, then refuse to join Twitter, don’t share your thoughts on a blog and get rid of your LinkedIn account.
2. Watch Repeats of Your Favourite TV Show
Not that you should be doing too many things at once, but if you want to double-up on your unmarketability, TV is great for multitasking. For example, you could watch repeat television while not joining Twitter. Aren’t you an unproductive little beast!
Even Charlie enjoys The Simpsons or Seinfeld double features. But admit it—even though these shows have great story structure, chances are you are probably watching them for catharsis. If you want to stay unmarketable then curl up in a ball with a bag of Walkers and a soda and watch all of Seinfeld’s season two.
Here is a great article on the story structure of Seinfeld.
Not to say you shouldn’t take time off to relax with a Simpson’s episode. Charlie’s favourite is the episode in which Homer gets a crayon lodged in his brain, revealing his true high IQ.
But why not watch something new that furthers your insight into screenwriting or story structure?
3. Don’t Rent Movies or Read Scripts
How often have you run into this person:
You: “So what do you want to do with your life?”
That person: “I want to make movies, like comedies and stuff.”
You: “Awesome, me too.”
Now how often do you or said person read scripts or watch new movies? If your answer is never, then you’ve mastered one great way to stay unmarketable.
Some might advise you to join one of Raindance’s fantastic courses.
But wait! Assuming you don’t have a job that option may remain too expensive. Instead, teach yourself how to write screenplays by reading the script then watching the movie. Raindance’s member section offers hundreds of scripts.
Note: Never watch the movie and read the script at the same time; it’s far too confusing.
4. Do Sudoku Puzzles
Both Charlie and I used to work at newspapers. As more and more newspapers fold, Sudoku may be all that is keeping the papers open.
Thousands of papers a day are discarded but for the 4×4 tear out Sudoku puzzle located with the crossword and comics.
Beware that reading a newspaper is a great way to stay marketable. Just tearing out the fun games and laughing at the strips is not.
Keeping fresh with the news and being aware of the local scene may lead to some great conversation starters. In addition you come off as a more intelligent individual. Your perceived intelligence might make you more marketable. As a marketable person, you might begin reading newspapers on the morning route to your job. It’s a vicious cycle.
Another great exercise, not guaranteed to enhance your unmarketability, is to perform a story scramble. This exercise was handed out to members of the Raindance Writer’s Certificate Foundation.
First, search for a short story in the newspaper. Then figure out the setting for the piece: e.g., wilderness, village or oppressed city. The process is further detailed during the course. Finally, find another equally appealing news story and try to combine it with the first story. Already you have the making for a great movie. But then you might become more marketable and take my future job.
Better yet, here is a Sudoku for you:
5. Become an Alcoholic and Use a Lot of Drugs
One of the best ways to stay unmarketable is to do hard drugs and drink all day. Yes, this one’s obvious.
On the other hand a great way to stay marketable is to network at a pub. Look for social groups that interest you and join them on a night out.
Regardless of your opinion of the movie, Wedding Crashers Rule Number 27 offers great networking advice: “Don’t over drink. The machinery must work in order to close.” Although potential employers are not the rule’s original targets, the advice is practical when talking to a future boss.
Here is a good take on how much to drink while networking by Tami Reiss.
Alternatively, to further your unmarketability ambitions, or lack thereof, get completely knackered and attempt to network at a pub. You might still get some cards, but it you’ll stay unmarketable if the names on the cards mean nothing to you the next morning.
6. Don’t Bathe
Staying unmarketable is like being single in a foreign country. You’re not as desirable to the market or opposite sex, and you don’t know the company lingo or just talk funny.
Not to make you an overachiever, but not bathing will make you both unmarketable and undesirable at once.
No one loves a smelly filmmaker. To stay unmarketable, shower as rarely as possible. And don’t use soap, or change your clothes—ever.
An offensive body odor ensures that in the unlikely event you should encounter a potential employer in your quest for perpetual unemployment, said potential employer will run away from you, far away.
7. Don’t Learn New Computer Skills
Depending on your market and preferred job another way to stay unmarketable is to have no additional skills. For instance not being able to use Adobe Photoshop or Microsoft Excel is a way to get a leg up in keeping unmarketable.
Plenty of how-to books or online videos are available to teach you most Microsoft, Apple and Adobe Suite programs. You don’t have to become a Final Cut Pro expert, but having some basics down may create an advantage over the competition.
Of course, you aren’t looking for an advantage, so continue to live in prehistoric computer times. To stay unmarketable computer-time is best spent playing games like Frogger, or following the next tip.
8. Spend Your Free Time in Online Role-Playing Games.
The title says it all.
But for clarification, if you have some extra free time you could use it to build your resume. Some consider volunteering at a local non-profit organization a great resume builder.
To stay unmarketable, though, it may be best to camp out in your basement with your stereophonic headphones. You might run into another troll from Gandor during a World of Warcraft session who offers you a job.
9. Use Buzzwords in Your Resume
Career coaches might tell you filling your resume with buzzwords and clichés is not appropriate during a recession. But these people are the enemy; their goal is to make you marketable!
Your resume is your chance to sell yourself. For example, instead of saying “achieved exponential growth for commercial sales department,” say “grew commercial sales 20% during the slowest quarter of the year and during a hiring freeze.”
But if you want to stay unmarketable, then use the same tired format for your resume as everyone else. You are guaranteed to go nowhere.
10. Post Provocative Pictures of Yourself Online
Are you a part of any Facebook albums titled “Just turned 21, about to get ****ed up” or “Stan’s bachelor party: last night of debauchery”? Great, because then you may be as unmarketable as they come.
Sometimes it’s hard not to be caught up in a Facebook album. It’s hard to avoid that friend who loves to take candid shots at the party. You may have just been casually drinking a beer, but it doesn’t help when the tagline reads “the first of many” or “here we go again.”
If you have friends that post these pictures, thank them now, because they may be ruining your chance at a future job.
If you did want to find a job, then you could create your own album from a night out. Any bar scene or concert shot in black and white can become a work of art. Albums can be a great way to show you’ve been places and experienced life.
In this photo, taken outside at Covent Garden’s street performances, you don’t see anyone drinking the beer, just a picture.
Whether unmarketability is your life-time dream or a new hobby, this article has everything you need to be all you want to be: jobless. You’re welcome.